Music Reviews

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Artist: Merzbow/Z'ev (@)
Title: Spiral Right/Spiral Left
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring (@)
Rated: *****
After 20 years of rumors of a forthcoming collaboration, recantations, postponements, these two blazoned masters of noise, who don't actually need any introduction having both of them an enviable curriculum and a remarkably tried experience in their field, have finally co-signed a collaborative release, even if the two long-lasting cochlear corrosions, tympanic drillings or, if you prefer, spirals are mutual mixing and shaping of each sonic code. A mission accomplished by Cold Spring's appreciated label manager Justin Mitchell.

If I exclude the inevitable sonic rampage for a while and their skills in making typhoons acting more as sorcerers than as callow blunderers from mastered or digital noises, an art whose secrets are deeply known by Masami Akita aka Merzbow, and from percussions often obtained from scraps, whose craftsman is the American (even if actually living in Peckham, UK, with Barbara Steveni, where he also mixed Merzbow's code on 20th August 2008, the first track of this emisymmetrical issue, whose first 13 minutes are really going to let your ears bleed) artist, musician and trusted pioneer of industrial music Stefan Joel Weisser aka Z'ev, one of the first aspect which has stricken me is the substantial stylistical homogeneity of both rehashes. The above mentioned first spiral is maybe the most difficult to listen for untrained ears especially for its tremendously harsh first part, where the blast of noises could sound more irritating than an imaginary suite for a quartet of hoovers, supported by a food grinder, a jackhammer and a jet engine, while the second spiral featuring some guitar modulations is definitively more bearable and enriched with urban field recordings, but it's practically impossible to appreciate it without considering the ritual core of this issue, putting it up as a soundtrack for an imaginary metropolitan hell, whose cyclic chants sounds as frightening as seducing. Even if not intended for the masses, this experimental release, whose package features graphic arts by Abby Helasdottir, is really stunning.



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