Artist: Terminal Sound System
Label: Relapse Records
Summary: Minimal ambient glitch. Lonely, tranquil sounds.
As you can probably guess from its title, RH-8SB is a pretty unusual
album. It features a minimal soundscape, comprised for the most
part of only cold pads, clean sub-bass and, for percussion, loops
made up of what sounds like a pulse dial telephone and a detuned AM
The result evokes images of an icy landscape and feelings of isolation
and loneliness, while the sounds themselves are reminiscent of
obsolete communications technology. Consequently, these tracks are
perfect for listening to while you trudge through the snow on a cold
This is a quirky album, but for the most part it's also tranquil.
A few of the cuts are a bit loud and clangy for my liking, but tracks
like Silt and Ghost have a compelling beauty. If nothing else,
Terminal Sound System has proven that clicks and glitches needn't
sound piercing and abrasive.
The only other album I can think of that is in any way comparable
to RH-8SB is The End of Tel Aviv by Faction. While it employs glitch
sounds to achieve a similar laid back effect, it doesn't have RH-8SB's
minimal simplicity or cold atmosphere, instead sounding more melodic
If you want to listen to something cold yet peaceful, RH-8SB is an
interesting oddity that deserves a place on any ambient fan's shelf.