Chad Mossholder Non-Site Specific Review

Chad Mossholder Non-Site Specific Review

General Information:

Artist: Chad Mossholder
Album: Non-Site Specific
Genre(s): Ambient Industrial
Subgenres(s): N/A
Released: 2014
Length: 57 minutes
Language(s): N/A
Label(s): Artificial Music Machine

Track List:

01. Fennel
02. Slope
03. Framework
04. Nephilim
05. Azoth
06. Cobweb
07. Oracle
08. Ataxia
09. Nascent
10. Chymia
11. Illuminated
12. Illuminated (Richard Devine’s Cylindrical Modular Mix)

Chad Mossholder Non-Site Specific Cover

Chad Mossholder Non-Site Specific Cover

Chad Mossholder Non-Site Specific Review

Non-Site Specific site is the debut solo album by American ambient industrial musician Chad Mossholder. It is an unconventional combination of ambient sound-crafting, unidentified noises and electronic manipulation expertly woven together into a series of atmospheric tracks.

They immediately conjure images in the listener’s head of abandoned factories, mechanical insects scuttling around in the wilderness, desolate cityscapes and seclusion. Nephilim comes to life with sounds that are reminiscent of small rodents squeaking around inside something, somewhere not readily identifiable. By contrast Cobweb has an almost percussive quality interwoven with spontaneous noises that ebb and flow from parts unknown. Each soundscape is crafted with remarkable attention to detail that will paint the listener’s mind with vivid imagery. The layers of textures and effects that come in and out of being over the course of Non-Site Specific can be just as rewarding on the first listen as any subsequent revisits.

However, it should be noted that none of these recordings can be considered songs in any conventional sense and, in spite of the variety on display, they can easily blur into one another because of their formless nature. Non-Site Specific is a cerebral expedition for those that dare tread out into the realm of the unconventional. Another example of this is Oracle. Full of echoes and signal-like sounds coming from a machine repeatedly trying to connect to another one, only to become enveloped and ultimately replaced with static noise in the process.

Nascent, on the other hand, teems with small life underneath a distorted backdrop of more signals, pointing to a bigger mechanical presence in a derelict environment. It is a bizarre blend of seemingly biological on-goings and mechanical processes that has been derived entirely from the technology used to create everything present in the recording.

Non-Site Specific is an honest title, with appropriate cover artwork, for the soundscapes contained within. When listening, it is best to do so in a quiet, darkened room without any distractions and a good pair of headphones to experience the meticulous craftwork involved bringing everything to fruition. In some ways it is the audio equivalent to a time-lapse video that depicts the development of a garden over several months. It is a gradual, unfolding process that operates in a similar fashion and is rewarding to the patient listener.

A casual listener will struggle to get beyond the first couple of tracks before throwing in the towel. This is their folly and those that press on, along with existing fans of both soundscapes and unorthodox compositions, will be rewarded for their efforts and hear these recordings as something akin to auditory vignettes.

It is not often that a highly untraditional album, in terms of content and techniques used in the creation of said content, can elicit such imaginative scenes in the mind of the listener. Yet Non-Site Specific, created with computer programs and lacking any formal structure, defies convention and does exactly this in an undeniably paradoxical fashion.


Chad Mossholder: Programming

External Links:

Chad Mossholder Homepage

Non-Site Specific on Bandcamp