Gossamer is Evan Reiner—the producer, guitarist, synthesizer scientist and urban-spelunking field recorder whose full-length debut Automaton dissolves the genre-breaking electronica of Autechre and Boards of Canada into a bottomless sea of found sound and ambient atmosphere. It’s less an album than an environment all its own, or a journey into the unexplored. And whether it’s inspiring a trip deep into the discography of Steve Reich or into California’s beautifully desolate Ansel Adams Wilderness, it’s that fearless spirit of exploration that brought Automaton to life.
Reiner grew up in the L.A. neighborhood of Eagle Rock with a father telling war stories about seeing Black Flag and the Germs play and with a set of cousins who’d get him started listening to hip-hop. (Especially instrumentals by iconoclastic producers like Premier, RZA and New York’s crushing DITC crew, Reiner remembers.) As he turned 16, he was playing guitar “religiously,” he says, as well as listening intently to Slayer and Cannibal Corpse on the way to ferocious hardcore shows on the fringes of Los Angeles.
“Automaton is me,” Reiner explains. “It’s my process. It’s a symbol of having accepted that there is a difference between being alone and being lonely. It’s a coping mechanism for the struggle to realize and balance what I am and am not in control of in my life. It reminds me of playing Bioshock and watching Blade Runner at the same time while naked in the jungle on another planet. It makes me think of watching an old home video of myself and seeing Neptune right outside my window. The list goes on and on—I could go forever.”