Cassette Corner: Order Anura

Order Anura - Order Anura
(Self-Released 2014)

In the biological field of taxonomy, the Anuran order includes all types of frogs and toads, which would explain the amphibious artwork printed on Order Anura's debut cassette cover, as well as the project's Bandcamp profile picture, clipped from the pages of the popular Frog And Toad children's book series. In a way, the name also illustrates the music that wafts from Ivan Heemskerk's apartment: cold and dewy, far removed from the influence of the rest of the world. Liquid organ melodies drip from morning leaves into the a crystalline basin of reverb, while Heemskerk's misty vocals bubble to the surface, coated in hiss. It is processional music that echoes through an empty cathedral, one that occupies a plane of reality that we do not. There are no bodies to absorb it, no obstacles for it to bounce off of. It is alien and haunting, in the vein of another keyboard-pop favorite of mine, Bevo Francis' Sun City Welcoming. Following the brief, but powerful set of seven original tunes on Order Anura is a spare and surprisingly emotion-inducing cover of "Overworld" from Gargoyle's Quest, a Game Boy title from 1990. Perhaps one day, Heemskerk will team up with California's Morgue Toad to create the ultimate collection of amphibious lo-fi melancholia.