A review from Wounds of the Earth (Issue 1, Winter 2012)


Research Chronicles 2007-2009 is a collection of 4 albums worth of older material written by Coph’antae Tryr published on 2 discs. If you are familiar with his work, likely from the Kalpamantra compilations or perhaps our own Eridanus Supervoid compilation, than you will know what you’re in for. He creates gorgeous, densely textured, repetitive, dark, droning music. Even though these tracks are from somewhat different time periods, the formula remains consistent. Within the packaging, each track gets a brief blurb describing it’s meaning/inspiration.

Disc I

The material on this collection appears to be laid out from newest to older and, as such, the first part of Disc I, Demirod, contains works from ‘08 and ‘09. This stuff is clearly the most recent as it seems to be the most densely layered and has slightly better production than the proceeding material. As I mentioned above, Coph’antae Tryr’s style is to compose a thick, visionary texture of melodic drones, pads, moving synthetic bits, and obscured sound effects. The opening tracks demonstrate his skills in this area perfectly: each track is quite hypnotic and quickly grabs the listener. The main problem with his work is that it is overly repetitious; he fails to craft flowing songs and typically just writes a really good fragment and loops it for ~6 minutes with overly subtle changes. Most of these tracks can hold your attention for about 4 before becoming tedious. The 5th track “Sadii” is the first time where hints of structure appear, as there are multiple parts to this track and components emerge and exit over its course.

The second part of the Disc, Gridaltlyn, opens with the very lengthy title track. Fortunately there is some sense of structure to this one as well and, while repetitive, there are a few movements it goes through – though it kind of feels like he strung 3-4 separate songs together rather than one coherent piece. The material on this album is a bit older and has a slightly darker and sparser feel to it. The same general formula applies here: single melodic texture repeated for the duration of the track.

Disc II

The second disc opens with the album Kyrleet which was previously released in a very limited quantity on Russian label Cold Graey. It is apparent that he was still finding his sound and experimenting during this period, as the tracks on this disc (all from 2007) are more lackluster and lack the refinement and depth of the newer material.

However, this material is fascinating in that it is exhibits a gloomier, moodier feel – incorporating harsher elements and hints of noise and industrial (a bit like some of the older CMI material) – and several tracks utilize pulsating, quasi-percussive sfx. Though this disc is weaker than the first, it is still an interesting showcase of Coph’Antae’s evolution and it’s enjoyable to hear him work with darker elements.


Coph’antae Tryr has the ability to create fantastic and captivating textures; however, his biggest and most glaring flaw is that he isn’t writing songs, he is writing loops. If he would cut down on the repetition and work on giving his tracks a bit of structure and significantly more variety throughout their duration, perhaps by bringing in melodies, percussion, vocals, etc, he could create some very profound material. As it stands, fans of drone will very much enjoy his material, but I can’t help but feel that it could be so much more. I’ll be keeping my eye on his future work for sure.

Overall Rating: 7.5/10