As getting lost inside records goes, you’d be hard-pressed to fall into a metaphysical sinkhole deeper than Rose Golden Doorways. After all, the album title says it all: this mind-blowing release from the sinister jazz deviants Pulled by Magnets exudes the abstract and the darkly cinematic. You might find it hard to discern one track from the next, but that’s hardly the point. For roughly 40 minutes, your belief in reality will be on temporary hiatus, and atmosphere in all its cold and disconcerting glory will serve as your only company.
During the opening moments of “Nowhere Nothing”, you may even mistakenly think you are listening to a slow-burning doom record. It’s only when the ominous brass joins the fray that Rose Golden Doorways reveals its dark jazz teeth. Percussion, trumpets, bass, and ambient distortion merge together in an uneasy swill, from which the music is able to rear its foreboding head and bring at least some clarity to those twisted foundations.
The precedence is then well and truly set, and the album continues in that manner, hitting some notably memorable soundscapes along the way. Hear “Slow Shrouded Aisle” for one example of this! It seems apparent that Rose Golden Doorways is as much of a soundtrack as it is an album, but a soundtrack to what exactly? Well, just ask your imagination! Where there are sinister dreams in strange places, then this record is here to occupy the void. The semblance of composition falls apart in places for your brain to stumble, the first example being found in the fleeting interlude of “Breath that Sparks”, which leads on to the marvelously frantic “Those Among Us”. Expect more of the same, and expect to get fully lost along the way.
By some act of remarkably intuitive creativity, the second section of Rose Golden Doorways somehow manages to present an even more potent concoction of intense, quiet, spacious sounds than the first, bending reason beyond recognition and dragging you down with it. After an uncertain stop at some more perturbed interludes, the record signs off in two phenomenal climaxes. The first is the cataclysmic progressions of “The Moon of Odulgin”, and the second is the brazenly haunting “Invite Them in”. With no tangible concept to hand, you are free to assume that the accompanying visuals to these songs, should there be any, would be suitably nightmarish. There appears to be no solid sense of into-to-outro structure in this album, so to feel as puzzled at the conclusion as you did at the start is probably a perfectly reasonable sensation to experience.
It’s deep. It’s creepy. It’s Rose Golden Doorways, and that’s just about all I can arm you with before you cross the threshold and get acquainted of your own volition. Pulled by Magnets did something pretty damn amazing here. What that is exactly, I can’t say for certain. It’s like looking at an abstract painting of an oily landscape consisting of many vibrant but unsettling textures – the shapes are indeterminable and the incentive is unclear, but the emotional journey it provides is distinct, unforgettable and completely and utterly spellbinding. For all its disturbed beauty, this album is one of the most incredible rides into the jazzy unknown I’ve had the pleasure of hearing. Structure and safety can wave goodbye, and Rose Golden Doorways will reign supreme. You’ll be grateful for it.