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Artist: DANISHMENDT
Title: Un Passe Aride
Format: CD
Label: Odio Sonoro / Architecht Of Noise
Rated: *****
UN PASSE ARIDE is the third album by the French band Danishmendt and it contains eight tracks/suites which length goes from five to fifteen minutes. Based on guitar noise, powerful drum beats and dissonant melodies, the album influences goes from noise core (see Neurosis), noise (I hear echoes of the 90s Anphetamine Reptile sound) to industrial/ambient (these elements tend to work in the background, building a solid basement to the granitic sound of the band, but on "Das boot", they play the main role thanks to echoes of grinding machines). While listening to the album a question came to my mind: what is the difference from pain and controlled suffering and what happens if you mix them? Well, I'll try to explain what I mean... Karl's vocals represent the pure pain. There are no moanings or else, he cries his lungs out, like there's no other way out. He has to take everything out, painting a desolation scenario where abandoned factories are visited by modern primitives that try to build a new world by following their ancestors rules. Guitars, drums, effects and stuff, instead, offer a varied sound based on obscure pounding formulas where stops and go, guitar arpeggios and brutal riffs are alternated creating a good sound canvas that is enriched also by the great recording production. If you want a taste of Danishmendt, you can check the whole album on streaming at the bands website.
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Artist: Leykam | Mark
Title: Live Extracts 96-98
Format: CD
Label: Frank Mark Arts (@)
Distributor: CD Baby
Rated: *****
1996-1998...for some mysterious reasons I still have vivid memories around the music circulating in those years. For instance I remember in some elitarian sets it wasn't so difficult to listen performances of Buddhist monks while emitting trance-inducing vocals together with eccentric keyboardists and sound crafters dealing with ethnic instruments whereas people sitting in the stalls included someone winking at this musical explorations with libels of some more or less improvised guru in the pocket or on the bedside table nearby a finely chiselled censer and sweet-smelling stick of incense and day-dreaming about any bizarre intersection point between technological progress and spirituality and other groups of radical-chic people feeling a certain nostalgia for their roaring twenties in the 60s/70s and taking a liking to those teenagers spreading rumors about a possible alien conspiracy for anaesthetizing human race througout ambient and trance music and some exotic food in order to conquer and arguably destroy the Planet Earth! I vividly remember a live exhibition of the Buddhist Buthanese monk Lama Gyourme and J.P. Rykiel whereas there was a background sound on the amplified one of snoring dispirited people and pensive aum(or ohm)-like hypnotized ones filling the sound space amidst the audience. These live extracts by the respected cosmic ambient knights Frank Mark and Roman Leykam, issued by the renowned Frank Mark's imprint and recorded in different live-sessions in Germany during those years, partially enucleates that cultural tumor without renouncing to an appreciable sound research as well as to its stage set so that the themes are more or less the same, which even if nowadays could be considered quite old-fashioned used to be the knaves in social scene. There are many nice episodes along this collection , especially those ones where the cosmic and progressive rock vein by Roman Leykam pulsates more intensely by highlithing the mystical pressure of the polished and clean sandpapering on frequencies and the thinning of sounds coming from samples and tapes by Frank Mark, but their style sounds ineluctably influenced by those cultural memes as well as by famous ambient archives of labels emitting in that period (FAX, Silent and even the plenty of selections filled with some classics by composers such as Brian Eno, Hector Zazou, Robert Rich, Steve Roach, Edgar Froese dealing with that unconventional way of treating standards, especially for the substantial lack of melody, supposedly inducing the illusion of floating or cruising or helping introspection...). By the way, some listener
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Artist: Edward Ka-Spel (@)
Title: The Minus Touch
Format: CD
Label: Beta-lactam Ring Records (@)
Rated: *****
You can get a sense of how an album will progress by looking at the lineup and the instruments that they will play. For Ka-Spel, it includes 'voice, keyboards, devices, acoustic things, broken things.' I have enjoyed the Legendary Pink Dots for over 15 years, but had not picked up as much of Ka-Spel's solo work. That changed when I got the latest package from Beta-lactam Ring Records (along with some more LPD stuff which will be reviewed shortly). First off, there is no doubt that the LPD influence is alive and well, which is understandable. However, Ka-Spel manages to put his own stamp on these recordings that keep the music distinct. Stylistically, this is much more sparse than the lush wall of sound often found in LPD, and has a bit more of an experimental feel to it. 'The Beast With 6 Fingers,' for example, is slow with an almost jazzy feel to it, with quiet instrumentation. It also features the memorable line, 'So jerks like me can rant and rave and call it art.' 'The Twisting Vines in Your Sick Mind' is noisy with an experimental vibe to it. If you were wondering where those broken things were that he would be playing, I think we found them. According to the liner notes, an earlier interpretation of "Kill it" appears on Cevin Key's album "Ghost in each Room" under the title "A Certain Stukey". It states that 'Things conclude tragically there too.' It is difficult to decipher some of the lyrics as the voices are sometimes distorted, but you get the sense that it has a woman insisting that a reluctant Ka-Spel 'kill it,' which she repeats many times throughout. Evcentually, Ka-Spel takes this to idea to a larger sector of humanity, describing marching in the streets with the same refrain of 'kill it.' Oddly enough, there is, at the end, what appears to be an outtake of Ka-Spel coaching the woman on how to say 'kill it,' which takes the listener behind the music. Overall, if you are looking for a more experimental version of LPD, you will very much enjoy this album. Even if you are not into LPD, however, this stands well on its own. This album weighs in at around 61 minutes.
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Artist: Voice of Eye (@)
Title: The Portland Improvisations
Format: CD
Label: Conundrum
Rated: *****
In the last batch I received from ChainDLK, I reviewed Voice of Eye's collaboration with Nux Vomica. Seems like Voice of Eye has been busy, because here is another disc for your listening pleasure. According to their website, this recording took place in August of 2009 when Soriah invited Voice of Eye to play for his Atlan CD release party in Portland, Oregon. 'Scouring Soriah's house for instruments, they commandeered some unfamiliar and handmade devices to play with. The result is The Portland Improvisations, where Voice of Eye are at their most raw and unadorned.' There are three improvisations, although in practice, there are only two, since 'Improvisation II: Valles Marineris' is only 19 seconds long and seamlessly blends in to the third track. In short, this is over 42 minutes of improvisation that create a wonderful atmosphere. Most bands wish they could create something this complex after hours in the studio. According to the case, 'all sounds herein are acoustic in origin.' Of course that does not mean that they stay that way. Everything seems processed, giving the listener the effect of listening to everything in a cavern full of echoes and reverb. Chimes, strings, ethnic percussion, and who knows what are mixed together to create a cohesive, dreamlike whole. The bonus track, 'The End of All Things,' is a studio recording about the loss of a hard drive. Stylistically it is a bit different from the other tracks, with a bit harsher edge. If the preceding tracks can be thought of as the dream, then this is the nightmare, with its ominous sawtooth waves and dissonance. Not bad, but I really preferred the improvisations. This disc is limited to 500 copies, so you will want to pick this up before it is gone. This disc weighs in at around 55 minutes.
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Artist: The Oratory of Divine Love
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Cohort Records (@)
Rated: *****
I had not heard of this project, but the name of the project is certainly interesting. Evidently this is a reissue of a release originally put out by EE Tapes. The best way to describe this is sound collage. In 'Cur Deus,' random bursts of sound punctuate the almost calming wall of noise. This is not shrill noise, but rather the noise of a crowded place, the chatter of everyone around you. Some samples make their presence known (Rolling Stones' 'Satisfaction,' for example) over the din. The rest of the album follows in a similar fashion (minus the Rolling Stones). This is music for schizophrenia, with voices emerging at times only to become submerged again before you have completely recognized what they are saying. Electronic bleeps and high pitched squalls straight out of a 1950s science fiction movie punctuate the ambient noise. At times there are moments of coherence, as with the repetitive synth melody in 'Benedictus.' Overall this is a fun listen, although at times some of the elements are repeated a bit too much for my taste. If you like Nurse With Wound's cut up material, this may be worth checking out. This album weighs in at around 61 minutes.
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