Crown of Cerberus “Flowers Emerge from Every Step She Takes”

A sporadic 2010-2012 project of Mack Chami, the end of 2022 and the start of 2023 is seeing a rebirth/reevaluation of the Crown of Cerberus moniker. Now a weirder, brighter, and more nimble animal, this tape steps into a freewheeling alchemy of breakcore sounds and Warp aesthetics.

Having recently more heavily leaned into the slower meaner nuanced industrial God Is War material, and definitely known for his more straightforwardly aggressive material, here Chami has that energy channeled into explosive extended bursts of flowing discovery, a kind of beautiful mania.

Somehow crafted out of the bare elements of melodic soundscapes and morphing skittering beatwork, across the whole of Flowers Emerge from Every Step She Takes there’s a very real feel of investigation. This is probably clearest on “Dream of Dreams,” where the beats are alive and restless but still punchy as fuck. Echoing the space-searching movement of drum and bass, the rhythms are like tendrils touching the corners of the production, more like extensions of the senses than percussive patterns. Here Crown of Cerberus is genuinely wide-eyed and exploratory in an energizing and very open way. 

There’s an awareness and use of IDM structures and sounds, too, perhaps most obvious on “Walking up During the best part of a dream” and “Pierre Lapin,” the bass drum aligning itself with somewhat conventional movement. The latter of those two has the pounding-est bass drum but still feels like the most gentle track; perhaps the relatively straight beat, despite its very relentlessness, makes it seem that way. The sense of movement is apparent throughout; on the spinning mercurial liquid sounds of “Venetian Hares,” there’s an upbeat militancy to the sound, an inconstant psychedelic dance that melts into IDM tones.  

The tape’s unsteady, digital breaks pulse like they’re organic rather than programmed, rollercoaster rattles that turn and dip while glitching and twisting. This chaos of sound never feels like it’s been crafted painstakingly or controlled by Chami, rather that it’s evolving under his gaze.

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