Patrick Glennon blesses the winter with Anxiety Grin

by Thomas Hagen

Patrick Glennon blesses the winter with Anxiety Grin

There’s not much bliss in Anxiety Grin, but it can help us bless this winter nonetheless. Dead Definition’s new tape from Philadelphia’s Patrick Glennon (also in Big Pal and Lirra Skirra) brings a blanket of dark and cool, acceptably solemn like the solitude we sometimes have to face – we all might be looking at a lot of solitude again soon under omicron.


Mostly missing is the bittersweetness I heard on his 2020 tape Two-Year Burn – “Ansible,” “On the Float (Naomi)” – which I also recommend. Bleaker now, Glennon holds up contradictory themes of claustrophobia and expanse in his textured tape loops. Three names derive from Titan, Saturn’s largest moon eight hundred eighty million miles away: “Ligeia Mare” its lake of liquid methane; “Seasons of Haze and Gale (Organonitrogen)” its inhospitable year; “Huygens” its Dutch “discoverer.”


“Ligeia Mare” offers a brilliant sticky beginning, warm layers of synth flowing like molasses, halfway through flipping, giving way to a brighter, more gaseous close. The other tracks keep stiller, some pressing on deep, blooming upright piano patterns, interrupted only by pinprick pauses, loved only by the breath of little synthesizers scattered through their nebula (“The Day They Passed”). Piano sounds like home for me while so many other sounds here feel so distant, defamiliarizing.


The tape holds a kind of geography too, with “Seasons of Haze and Gale,” says Glennon, mostly made of microsamples from “an old fucked up Kronos Quartet cassette I bought at Brewerytown Beats for like a dollar.” Train passengers and conductors in Ireland chatter on “Anxiety Grin,” while birds and creeks near Connemara kiss “The Day They Passed.” A percussive malfunctioning ALDI refrigerator shuts off the final dirge of “Huygens” back in Philadelphia.


Complete with a deep, warm mix that stays heavy start to finish, this all makes for an awkward blend of embrace and emptiness that, oddly, I call fit for December listening, alone here on the sidewalk. The music won’t make you happy, but it will keep you quiet.


Tapes are out now in silky lavender, complete with marble J-cards, at deaddefinition.bandcamp.com.





Patrick Glennon blesses the winter with Anxiety Grin

by Thomas Hagen

Patrick Glennon blesses the winter with Anxiety Grin

There’s not much bliss in Anxiety Grin, but it can help us bless this winter nonetheless. Dead Definition’s new tape from Philadelphia’s Patrick Glennon (also in Big Pal and Lirra Skirra) brings a blanket of dark and cool, acceptably solemn like the solitude we sometimes have to face – we all might be looking at a lot of solitude again soon under omicron.


Mostly missing is the bittersweetness I heard on his 2020 tape Two-Year Burn – “Ansible,” “On the Float (Naomi)” – which I also recommend. Bleaker now, Glennon holds up contradictory themes of claustrophobia and expanse in his textured tape loops. Three names derive from Titan, Saturn’s largest moon eight hundred eighty million miles away: “Ligeia Mare” its lake of liquid methane; “Seasons of Haze and Gale (Organonitrogen)” its inhospitable year; “Huygens” its Dutch “discoverer.”


“Ligeia Mare” offers a brilliant sticky beginning, warm layers of synth flowing like molasses, halfway through flipping, giving way to a brighter, more gaseous close. The other tracks keep stiller, some pressing on deep, blooming upright piano patterns, interrupted only by pinprick pauses, loved only by the breath of little synthesizers scattered through their nebula (“The Day They Passed”). Piano sounds like home for me while so many other sounds here feel so distant, defamiliarizing.


The tape holds a kind of geography too, with “Seasons of Haze and Gale,” says Glennon, mostly made of microsamples from “an old fucked up Kronos Quartet cassette I bought at Brewerytown Beats for like a dollar.” Train passengers and conductors in Ireland chatter on “Anxiety Grin,” while birds and creeks near Connemara kiss “The Day They Passed.” A percussive malfunctioning ALDI refrigerator shuts off the final dirge of “Huygens” back in Philadelphia.


Complete with a deep, warm mix that stays heavy start to finish, this all makes for an awkward blend of embrace and emptiness that, oddly, I call fit for December listening, alone here on the sidewalk. The music won’t make you happy, but it will keep you quiet.


Tapes are out now in silky lavender, complete with marble J-cards, at deaddefinition.bandcamp.com.