Distance is as much a state of mind as it is a simple fact. A click or inches away, everyone and everything can feel—if not outright holographic—not quite actual. Hours drip past but whatever rewards we’ve promised ourselves don’t seem that much nearer. When they finally arrive, it’s like reaching the peak of a mountain only to find the landscape draped in cloud cover and one’s backpack empty of rations. You think the stars are twinkling sagely, but they’re long dead.
In its way, “Singing, Part 1” is chock full of stars: distended bells tolling; bleating, disembodied dial tones; pealing pulsations; glassine reverberations. Clustered impossibly close or separated by unfathomable voids, they invariably flicker, then just as immediately recoil—as though shamed by the darkness from whence they sprang, as though they were never even there to begin with.