Matt Weston “Four Lies in the Eavesdrop Business”

Matt Weston’s new joint is massive. Even if it only clocks in at a little over 50 minutes, the depth and the maze-like journey it goes on feel huge. I tend to associate Weston with percussion-based work and while that is a major element of Four Lies in the Eavesdrop Business, his sonic weaponry is varied and compositions dense. Each step in the process is carefully considered, yet the album teeters on the brink of blowing off the rails at any minute. It makes for an engaging, exhilarating listen.

Weston blasts out of the gate with the 10-minute “We Are Armed” and he’s not joking. Cut to shreds and left in the cesspool to die, “We Are Armed” blitzes through sliced samples and grating electronics, desperately searching for a way out. Tense rhythms shoot through the mud for a brief moment of clarity before the crunching noise overtakes everything again. It’s disorientating. Industrial drones groan in the distance, a monster machine waking up, and then the bombs start falling. Weston cranks up the drums and zigzags through the debris field, finding tenuous safety in the glitched-out embrace of “Your Limp is Waiting” (before it gets wiped off the planet, too).

So much of what grabs me about Four Lies in the Eavesdrop Business is how unexpected it is. Weston stitches together moments that lead to insecure reflection after experience fear and anxiety in equal measure first. The short but potent “For Andrew Cyrille” is a claustrophobic tomb, creaking and bowing beneath the strain of the Earth above. Muffled percussion echoes in the hollow cavern, but in the pitch black, it’s as if the walls are collapsing. “You Tried to Fix the Paranoia” buzzes with delusions with full-fledged psychosis piercing the veil every so often, the aural wall holding it all back crumbling every minute. The reward, though, is in the quiet, watery confines of “Solitary Vulture.” It’s still an eerie landscape, but in its slow progression, there is time to breathe. In 15 minutes, Weston runs the sonic gauntlet. 

I’ve listened to Four Lies in the Eavesdrop Business many times and I’m still discovering new tonal passageways and emotional weight in the dingy corners. Weston saves the best for last, though, as shrill electronics wail and wobble, plodding along heavily on “Fear of Insomnia” until he gives up and finds a polyrhythmic groove. It’s oddly cathartic, bouncing along on waves of textured drones collapsing beneath the malignant gravity of it all. Four Lies in the Eavesdrop Business is one hell of a wild ride.

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