Earlier today, William Basinski updated his soundcloud.com account for the first time in roughly a year. The track is “Cascade Excerpt.” It is characteristically elegant, somehow both angelic and desolate. As the track’s title suggests, and is often the case in Basinski’s music, the sound is that of a deeply echoing, richly refracted environment. Each sound is heard retreating and decaying in warbling stages, and the routine yet variegated nature of this decay makes the exact start point of a given cycle increasingly difficult to focus on, as if collected distant echoes in turn combine to form a new initial step of the ongoing process. The sound is like that of some majestic crystal cathedral shattering in exceedingly slow motion, forever.
According to the brief accompanying liner note, the track was posted as a result of the “premium direct to fan solution” website limitedrun.com, so perhaps Basinski has something new coming. A longer video of “Cascade” was posted at the website of the New Yorker late last year: