Six drones comprise Glenn Ryszko‘s album Machine, but they’re only drones in a very general sense. There is texture, percussion, and even form — yes, form, the seeming antithesis of drone-craft — inherent in these works. Take the fourth track (“Machine 004” — that’s how they’re all titled, just the number changing, like pieces moving off an assembly line), for example: There’s a lazy sway to its thick warble; it moves like a sine wave doubling as a kid’s swing set on a hot summer day. But this drone, even at just under three minutes, doesn’t merely stick to that. In time, a higher-pitched tone enters, like a distant prayer bell — and the piece’s fadeout is so slow, that it’s not merely a matter of closure; it’s akin to narrative, as each constituent sound slowly disappears (MP3).
The opening track, another favorite, has a telegraph pulse, all variable static and meaningful patterns, but there’s also a stereoscoping beat in there, like an old-fashioned metronome, or the faraway clank of a slow-moving railroad car (MP3).