On Becoming in Shadows ~ Of Being Touched, Jason Doell’s piano and electronics roam wherever they please. The Toronto-based composer and sound artist created the music by recording piano phrases and tinkering with them using an algorithmic program, but it rarely sounds inflexible. Instead, the phrases liquefy, flowing with the ease of a river. At its heart, Becoming in Shadows ~ Of Being Touched is an experiment in a looser process, highlighting how musical structure isn’t all about rigidity—it’s malleable and transformable.
Doell expresses his shapeshifting style through layering, transforming, and playing with different textures. The opener Of Being Disturbed begins with a clamour, wavering between crashing sounds and dissonant, tinny piano plinks; Of Becoming hangs in a near stillness made of eerie, placid tones. These tracks explore how contrasting patterns and sounds might intermingle or clash. The closer, Of Being Touched, feels like a combination of the first two pieces, teetering between moments of gently tumbling melodies and crinkling, scratching sounds. On each track, Doell unites sounds that don’t necessarily mesh: Metallic shards and gossamer piano phrases glide into each other and fall apart, floating in or fading away as the moment passes. In the end, Doell’s music feels like a long trek—a series of phrases wandering through a forest, searching for the end of a trail that never comes.