The seed for CONFINES started with the union between techno and industrial, fog-filled noir nights in goth clubs and a collaboration between like-minded musicians. Looking to expand away from the worlds of punk and hardcore while still applying that aesthetic and ethic, Phersonae was born with the focus of creating an aggressive industrial-techno counterpoint to previous work. Soon thereafter the solo project CONFINES, was born to explore the dimly-lit corners of techno with fist-clenching beats, gut-rumbling bass kicks and a layer of caustic fury with doses of misanthropy.
Starting as a mix between performance and DJ, CONFINES took gigs across the city pairing with JK Flesh, Vatican Shadow, Container and more, all while refining the work and understanding the congress between performer and audience. With a strong understanding of the dividing line between populism and the confrontational, the result is CONFINES new effort the Geography of Nowhere EP.
The concept behind Geography of Nowhere comes from the artist’s rapidly shifting home base– New York City. During a lifetime lived in the area, CONFINES experienced seismic shifts in the face of the largest city in the US. By witnessing these rapid demographic changes due to gentrification and it’s ripple effects, it became darkly comic that the artist had become a stranger in the strangest land of them all, a place called home. Furthering the concept of Geography, CONFINES is in itself an exploration– the first step into the industrial and techno worlds by a confessed “hardcore kid.” Furthermore, CONFINES culled found sounds, field recordings, tooling and everyday objects to make the bulk of the record– worksites, construction areas and the “sound of progress” made for a further ironic twist on the gentrification theme. All workshop sounds were recorded in the family workshop, another ironic nod towards the theme.
While names like Einstürzende Neubauten and SWANS come to mind when discussing the basis for CONFINES– whether field recordings, sounds from the worksite, metal on metal or other industrialisms– the project thrives on diversity. With a basis in Latin music from the golden era ruled by Fania, CONFINES also takes influence from the city’s crucial Paradise Garage scene, the immortal Larry Levan and others. It’s this baseline understanding that CONFINES applies to That Total Age-era Nitzer Ebb, early Ministry and even later influences like Regis and Ancient Methods, the result being a pounding techno approach that is mindful of the dancefloor and headphones.
Geography of Nowhere is a trio of tracks built to thump, hammer and crush, all while delivering subtle melodic phrasing and songwriting built for repeat consumption. Much like the bustle of NYC, the Geography of Nowhere is built to appease the short-attention span of it’s native residents, delivering a venomous and visceral dance floor onslaught. It’s a coded map of a wasteland turned Disneyland that is the Big Apple, and a look into its future from boots firmly entrenched in it’s storied past. Get Geography of Nowhere on April 4th via Synthicide and look for future installments in the coming months for the full story. CONFINES is the first artist released on the long-running party’s new imprint.
CONFINES is the solo outing of multi-instrumentalist, performer and DJ David Castillo of Brooklyn, New York. Castillo is also vocalist for post-hardcore favorites Primitive Weapons, brutal metallic hardcore band White Widows Pact and principal partner at the famed Saint Vitus Bar.
released April 4, 2019
All Music Written and Performed by David Castillo
Recorded and Mixed by Travis Bacon at Chapel Black Studios
Mastered by Kris Lapke
Layout and Design by AJ Annunziata
Photography by Joshua Meckes