Aperus - Lie Symmetry

CD:   $12.00



Download at Bandcamp:   $8.00

Aperus - Lie Symmetry

On Lie Symmetry, Brian McWilliams (aka Aperus) creates an ambient work of highly saturated color and sound, blending buzzing analog synths with warm textures and a compelling selection of field recordings. Here, McWilliams works as sonic sculptor - exploring the edges, pushing the sound as far as possible and shaping the music and artwork together into a nearly synesthetic singular vision. Defying easy categorization, the album moves between ambient, electronic, environmental and drone music to create a wide array of emotional tones. With all of its angles and contours, Lie Symmetry is an album sure to reward repeated listens and appeal to fans of various ambient styles.


From the liner notes:

I first heard the term Lie Symmetry on the radio segment "Finding Beautiful Symmetry Near Absolute Zero". There, physicist Alan Tennant described his study of transitions in the quantum states of deeply cooled ions - "when water goes from ice to liquid, there are transitions between these states. At the exact point where you change from one state to another, that's where you get the really important stuff ... In fact, [these transitions] are quite beautiful. The quantum aspect of the system provides a kind of a simplification, an extra layer of order that you wouldn't expect." This order or symmetry is known as E8 or Lie Symmetry.

I held onto Lie Symmetry as a title for years hoping to return to it for the right project - supplying diagrams, text and photos from scientific studies as part of the artwork. But ultimately, I found the research difficult to connect with and even harder to explain.

Then, unexpectedly, I found a series of photos taken by accident after a recent hike. The simplest explanation is that I left my phone in camera mode while it was in my pocket, triggering the shutter as I walked. These accidental landscapes suggest the light and contour of the high desert but are nothing more than abstractions captured from a covered lens. Many of the photos show distinct center lines with heavy bands of color and a symmetry all their own. When I saw them, I knew that the artwork I was looking for had suddenly appeared while I wasn't looking. Maybe the physical world wasn't behaving predictably as I walked through it that day or perhaps I projected the landscape I saw onto "film" as a kind of thoughtography.

In the end, I suppose "entities should not be multiplied unnecessarily". It's my hope that the music and photos link back to the concept of Lie Symmetry in a way that invites curiosity and further exploration.


Aperus ~ DSI OB6, Roland Juno 106, Roland JP8O8O, Ensoniq ASR10, TAL UN-O-LX, Synplant, shortwave radio, ebow guitar, drum loops, wind chimes, thunder drum, rattles, field recordings, sample manipulatio

All songs recorded and mixed by Brian McWilliams at the Sound Observatory. Mastered between 2016 and 2018 with assistance from Ron Sunsinger, Jan Roos and Jason Goodyear.

© 2018 Geophonic Records, geocd04