Shawn O'Sullivan (Further Reductions, NYC)
Multi-instrumentalist Robert Yang’s Bézier project has appeared on Dark Entries many times over the last decade, most recently with the 2018 LP Parler Musique. Says Yang, “What started as a project to investigate the love of the sound and scenery while living in San Francisco quickly developed into a passionate search for interlocking melodies and driving rhythms.”
On 'Valencia', Bézier invokes twinned places. The Valencia Street of San Francisco is channeled, which was the center of the city’s vibrant new wave scene in the 1980s.
But also echoed is Valencia, Spain, and La Ruta del Bakalao aka La Ruta Destroy, the Spanish clubbing scene throughout the 80s and 90s famed for its aggressive and synthetic sounds.
'Valencia' is a darker record for Yang, exploring themes of submission and catharsis with nods to SF’s gay leather bars of the 70s and 80s.
The high BPM salvos of “Valencia” and “Scrupulous” capture the frantic energy of Bakalao and Valencian wave acts like Última Emoción.
Elsewhere Yang mines the dreamy space disco and Hi-NRG sounds they’re known for, like on the brooding “Past the Marshes” or the anthemic “Reservoir”, which features their partner Len.Leo on vocals.
Bézier deftly navigates past and present, light and dark, pain and pleasure, the stasis of memory and the flux of time.
'Valencia' was mastered by Alex Michalski, with EQ for vinyl done by George Horn. Gwenael Rattke designed the sleeve, which features an 80’s punk zine-esque geometric grid pattern mirroring San Francisco street maps. Also included is a 5x7 postcard with notes.
This record is dedicated to the memory of a legendary audio engineer George Horn who sadly passed August of 2021. George has been instrumental in helping develop Bézier’s sound through mastering and cutting lathes on early releases on Dark Entries like Ensconced, Telomeres, Primes and Parler Musique. One more time, George Horn’s magic touch as been applied to this record as well. We owe a debt of gratitude for all that George has provided us.