by Alex York
Lars Lundehave Hansen’s LP Terminal Velocity opens a true warp in the listener’s perception of space—in the informal sense—and time. Venturing through twenty-one tracks in around forty minutes, each piece is truly indivisible by standard structured means. The performer is not beginning or ending the pieces; they are each being unveiled to you, and you can see, hear, and feel that they’ve existed long before you came to realize.
This album goes beyond intellectual prowess; it is overtly emotional. No passive listening experience can be had with Terminal Velocity. The execution becomes irrelevant. You can only focus on what you hear and the vision of each universe as you pass through it. The timbre and tempo of the drones, and their constant motions paired with cold sine waves push you between it all. Always engulfed throughout, you’re floating and surrounded. The space is endless; nothing comes near or far, but rather just churns and evolves from all directions.
The temperament of Terminal Velocity is power in the most somber sense. The ominous dread is familiar, but the gasps and fluttering high tones bring you away from the receiving end into that of an onlooker. The whole story being painted for you sets itself apart from other ambient, dark ambient, or drone recordings. Like life, even in the most dense and depressive states there are things to admire, or in the least, observe as separate from the adulterated. You can choose to make this part of the terror, or a break in the chorus.
I would like to note that this record must be enjoyed in a true stereo setting. The recordings aid the listener more so when you can experience the motion of sounds. Being surrounded is deliberate. Headphones would be optimal, of course, but my experience sitting directly between two speakers was enough for me to feel paranoid that maybe I was still stoned from earlier in the morning.
I don’t think I have been as floored by a release since John Wiese’s Deviate from Balance. I cannot recommend tracking down a copy of this LP enough!