Mohammad: Som Sakrifis (Pan)
Mohammad is a trio that seems to truly triangulate between its members’ strengths. Coti K plays contra-bassoon, Ilios (owner of the Antifrost label) plays oscillators, and Nikos Veliotis plays cello. For Som Sakrifis, the trio migrated to Pan instead of Ilios’s own Antifrost imprint. This is my first exposure to their music, but it’s a logical fit on Pan, veering into the fringes of experimental and drone music with a heavy emphasis on timbre and texture. Most of the time, Coti K. and Veliotis play in sync, with droning, extended tones that bend within one another, creating a beguiling result that certainly sounds acoustic but otherwise can be difficult to identify specifically as to what exactly is creating the sound. “Sakrifis” starts it off with 7 minutes of gliding, deliberate, dirgelike tones that culminate in a swell of sound with vocalizations underneath. “Lapli Tero” continues along those lines but with a more compelling, hypnotic refrain that sounds as resolute as it is hopeless. But perhaps the most evolved piece is the last of the three: “Liberig Min” is seventeen minutes long and starts unassumingly with a rhythmic tweet and a slow, steady crescendo of cello and oscillator tones, one which persists throughout the track, punctuated by prolonged rests and near-silence. Som Sakrifis is nothing if not consistent, with its languid arrangements and morose disposition, but the trio really work the sound to their best advantage.