Once aired, the possibility was difficult to unthink: The Brown Study as an experiment in extruding each asounder’s evil inclinations. In other words, the ground that each individual melts into, inevitably cedes to, if asymptotically. The tendencies that cannot be avoided even when convinced one is successfully avoiding them. (It appears that no matter how draconian the ablation of one’s habits, one more is always unanticipatedly lying in wait, sub rosa, for a serendipitous encounter to brazenly reveal. Infinite regress.)

Indeed, each acolyte began to slide into their respective divergence grooves, as(o)undering the melody into distinct strata, finally honoring the eldritch priest’s prefatory declamation: slipping in and out of tuning, purposely hitting adjacent notes, harmonizing when the melody putatively implied a cadential arrival, repeating pitches as a comedown, heterotemporalization (deliberately playing at a slightly slower or faster speed), sculpting and discretizing approaches towards perceived climaxes and pull-backs away from them, dramatizing lines. Though these idiomatic perspectives catalyzed a festering heteroglossia of sorts, X couldn’t help but hear the melody’s identity paradoxically amplified. “Inflect at an intensity that leads back to the melody, ouroborically.”

If X’s conjecture regarding the covert motivation of the séance was at all accurate, traps were everywhere, open circuits that begged resolution, conclusion, magnification or further digression. And yet, knowledge of these traps didn’t rule out the hazard of being ensnared at a deeper, unsuspected level.

Something else was beginning to develop, now by virtue of durational expenditure. A few asounders, fatigued by the tensile preoccupation with continually secreting meaningful melodic expression and venturing tactics to maintain interest, rather than withdrawing redoubled their involvement by unexpectedly flailing off in a quick burst of wiggy energy: an unabashed harmonization, a raucous timbral modulation, an extreme octaviation, all overplayed, overshot. These fugitive stabs at blowing off pent-up control enabled a more prompt reengagement with the task than was possible for those that believed they could stave off inertia by maintaining strict textual fidelity. Their transition into iniquity simply took longer to effectuate.


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