The Exhaustion Of Emotion

by Derek Rogers

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It might be the front cover image of gloaming LA that did it, but I was quickly reminded of Angelo Badalamenti’s work on David Lynch’s films – and Mulholland Dr. in particular – on my first listen to this. The drones are deep and ominous but, on tracks like ‘Primitive Honor’ and ‘The Exhaustion of Emotion’ in particular, they’re underpinned by intoxicating, woozy synth tones that stir in the listener the kind of emotional response that Rogers evidently drained himself of in order to lay it directly onto tape. ‘Unto The Keeper’ is a euphoric blast of hope and optimism but that feeling is gradually overcome as the tape progresses and the drones grow deeper, darker and more threatening. ‘We Know Not The Error of Our Ways’, which closes Side A, presents a roiling cyclone of static that puts paid to any thoughts you might get of this being romantic stroll down Sunset Boulevard. Side B is a dreamland, knocked-out loaded, lost and amnesiac and ‘Firm Implantation’ is exhaustion manifest; the tape itself seems to drag itself around here, as if suffering from a bad case of sticky-shed, and it does fall apart Basinski-style as the synths rise up to bury it.


released June 1, 2011

Rogers skillfully takes subtle chord progressions that softly tug at the heartstrings, buries them beneath mounds of static shrapnel and carefully dismantles the wreckage as it becomes too heavy to bear any longer. A swelling undercurrent of melody churns and swirls below the harsh, robotic buzz of crunching machinery until the elements of serenity and discord are separated once again. This prolific Texan sound artist presents seven concise compositions of thoughtful drone that burst with an emotional storytelling nature that so many contemporaries lack.

All tracks recorded/created by DR in early 2011 in Austin, TX, and released on Bridgetown Records as Bridgetown #44. Special thanks to Kevin Greenspon.



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Derek Rogers Dallas, Texas

Derek Rogers (b. 4 September 1980) is a musician active in electronic composition, drone, free-improv, ambient, and noise textures. He utilizes computer processes as well as traditional instrumentation and field recordings to create emotionally resonant work, tending toward long forms and soundscapes. ... more

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