A self-proclaimed firm supporter of DIY music, New York-based artist Mislav Forrester and his project Nyentek have contributed a huge number of recordings to the experimental music space, including his most recent effort, Okay, So Let’s Say… (Jan. 2015). This 16-track album showcases the lengths to which Nyentek will go to produce a mind-bending, at times blissfully bizarre, collection of music that pushes the limits of sound and sensibility.
Okay, So Let’s Say… kicks off with “Shred,” which immediately transports the listener into a frenzied world of drum beats that back everything from reverberating notes and short, repeated melodies to clicks and clacks and beatbox-esque mouth effects. The track seems to build up to something but never comes down before abruptly fading out and into the next track, “Lazer Vizion.” “Lazer Vision” is the first song with lyrics, delivered in a rhythmic monotone that resembles lo-fi beat poetry.
Later on in the album, “Baby” is a particularly humorous track, especially when the song’s words and their delivery are combined in the way Nyentek has devised. The chorus, for example, is simply, “Baby, oh baby / You look so good / Baby, oh baby / Good enough to eat,” and verses include lines like, “Babies are little humans / Their heads are disproportionately large / And that is why they have to be born / Without the skills most animals have / Calling someone a baby is diminutive / And implies a kind of childishness or weakness / In short, it’s an insult / So it’s time to revolt.” The actual music is simpler and more reined in than most of his other tracks, as the lyrics take the driver’s seat, which makes it a stark contrast and standout song as compared to the rest of the album.
On the other hand, songs like “Dissidents” find a way to emphasize both zany keyboard lines and lyrics. This time around, the lyrics do take on their usual monotone quality some of the time, but at others, particularly in the first verse, Nyentek shows off his vocal prowess with an ear-splitting singsong and brief falsetto interludes. Surrounding the vocal riffs are bip-boops, amp-busting distorted noises and melody licks that fly up and down the musical scale.
Through this album and his other many recordings, Nyentek, who is a full-time music teacher, hopes to inspire other educators to view creative self-expression as valuable and viable, even when it doesn’t necessarily need a huge investment of money or time. While he does hope to bring joy to others with his music, Nyentek’s main focus is creating music for himself and testing the creative waters allowed by the experimental genre and the manpower behind today’s keyboard and computer-driven musical creations.