The story behind this cassette is as serendipitous as the show was short. The full version can be enjoyed on the release page, but the brief version is this: the artist was sitting by a person at a conference who admitted to having found a mysterious box of fire damaged reel to reel tapes marked “Terror of the Mooncat.” The music turned out to be the score to a late night horror series that lasted only two episodes. Daniel Alexander Hignell-Tully did his best to restore the original tapes, and invited original artist Warren ‘Kaninen’ Rasmussen to fill in the blanks. Now we have a tape, scrawled with warp and wobble, static and skip, plus a research magazine: a found-sound Blair Witch Project of music.
We (mostly) believe this story, due to the credit given to the Faroe Tourist Board. If it’s a fake, it’s a deep fake, as Rasmussen has a Discogs page that links back to an earlier compilation from Difficult Art and Music. An 80s sheen coats the music, although the programming in “En ny mand, kløer og det hele” and “Des tiger over, Marta” sounds too modern to be true, a possible tip of the hand.
While not exactly scary, the music is ominous, and with 21 tracks in 35 minutes, there’s little in the way of repetition. “Gemmer sig for naboerne” is the most foreboding, but there are three levels for the listener: the original music, the fire-injured tape and the re-created product. The damage scars, which sometimes cause the notes to rush forward or lag behind, produce a greater level of mystery than originally inbued. We applaud the decision to release the album on tape, as the other formats might sound too clean.
Although initially scored as individual cues, the tracks bleed into each other like the mingled blood of multiple victims. One emits a death rattle while another suddenly jerks. The music was likely the best part of the show, whose cast came from a popular soap opera. The finale “Marta besøgte igen / Jeg vil dræbe igen” (“Marta visited again / I will kill again”) builds to a savage drone that is cut off abruptly, like a severed tape or head. Does the veracity of the story matter? Not when the music is this good. In fact, we’d give this team even more credit if it were not. (Richard Allen)