Music Reviews

Brigitte Roussel: Amber Hole

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Industrial Noise / Power Noise / Harsh Noise
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 28 2015
Artist: Brigitte Roussel (@)
Title: Amber Hole
Format: CD EP
Label: Double Hallucinative (@)
Rated: *****
A leg of the underrated project Nac/Hut Report, the Polish illustrator, vocalist and performer Brigitte Roussel offes an interesting and genuine glimpe of her sonic aesthetics on this release, which features her partner-in-art LI|ese|Li on guitar and sound forging. Her sound has often been compared to some well-known industrial acts such as Cabaret Voltaire or Psychic TV, but the disturbances and the sonic landslides that got rolled over her awesome vocals displays a more personal and soemwhat hallucinatory approach: she seems to give voice to a sort of curse since the beginning of "Amber Hole" on the disquieting "Prologue", which sets the mood for further explorations inside her sound. The off-beat journey on "Golden Trains" renders a sort of nightmare, whose subtle obsessiveness is so visceral that could cause dizziness and tummy cramps; she seems to loop a deformed motif by the Hungarian composer Rezso Seress she thanks in the inlay on "Hidden Room", whose vampire parlor tricks let me think about an imaginary crossbreed between Tylervision's "The Last Human" and a track by Schlauch on the singing by a feverish Lydia Lunch, before letting her voice drowning in the psychotic gurgling of "Rain", corroding the flesh of an electro-mechanical loop on the morbid "Dance Of Butterfly", where even her voice seems to undergo drastic changes (from a sort of childish Lady Radiator - who saw Lynch's Eraserhead knows who I'm referring to - to a sadistic agitator) and collecting cerebrospinal fluid and blood on the gently ferocious "Tears Box" and the castrated melodic corruption of "Churchyard", the chapter before an epilogue which seems to echo Guy Debord's lessons and perspective.
Feb 26 2015
Artist: I.corax
Title: From gOLDem Flesh To Silverb ONE
Format: CD
Label: Aural Hypnox (@)
Rated: *****
I spoke about the recent reissue of the two parts of "The Cadaver Pulse" and "Kuilu", the first live performance of the obscure output by Anti Haapapuro and Jaakko Vanhala, by Aural Hypnox and in order to complete the cycle of former I.Corax stuff that appeared on very limited edition on their imprint Blue Sector, the label which is the voice of the Helixes collective re-released "From gOLDem Flesh To Silverb ONE" through the Stellar Mansion series. Entirely live recorded in studio during the preparation of the live performance with Karjalan Sissit who took place at the celebration for the fifth year of Kuollen Musiikin Yhdistys by the Dead Music Association in Turku, Finland, the album is maybe the one where some similarities with German black ambient quite known project Inade are clearer, but besides any possible stylistical matching, the hypnotical drones that I.corax usually built by means of a combination of heavily processed field recordings, analogue synths and somewhat disquieting and ghastly sounds of horns they made from animal bones, bowed instruments and occasional human whispers and words are clearly discernable. The breathtaking sonic journey where the urgency of the first untitled track, which could let you feel the fevered tension of an hopeless escape from harassing invisible entities, gradually turn paler and paler over stifling entrapping synths, natural swarming which could let you feel you're getting raped by invisible insects or birds, incomprehensible verbal warning, which sounds like whispered by likewise invisible entities behind listene's neck, sinister clinks, dazzling frequencies and a contnued mystical tension. Just 500 available copies.

NHK: Program

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 25 2015
Artist: NHK (@)
Title: Program
Format: CD
Label: LINE (@)
Rated: *****
If you have ever asked yourself what could be beyond the so-called post-techno, you could find one of possible answers in the sonic rocky ridges that NHK, the brainchild by the experienced noise engraver Kouhei Matsunaga - the man behind the curtains of many similarly named different projects (NHK'Koyxen, Koyxen, Internet Magic, NHKyx) and former collaborator of Merzbow, Autechre's Sean Booth, Mika Vainio, Conrad Schnitzler, Asmus Tietschens, Jungle Brothers' Sensational and many other important sound artists - and the young producer Toshio Munheiro, explores on this interesting release on Chartier's LINE. Both the names of the release - "Program" - and the titles of the ten tracks - all of them have been titled by means of the shortening of channel ("Ch"), followed by their ranking on the tracklist expect of the ninth "channel" which got named "Ch10" - mirrors the fact that NHK is also the name of the notorious publicly owned Japanese national broadcasting organization. Most of tracks seem to crack simple house structures up by short-circuit currents which bring its building blocks to their embryonic stage, but there are some moments when a sort of anticlimax of these primordial electric entities surprisingly spring out such as the agonizing engine that resounds from the deep emptiness of "Ch4", the noisy wart that rises from the ticking time bomb of "Ch5", the entrancing vent-like floating noise on the mechanical pulsations of "Ch6", the vacuum-packed low-frequencies and the clipped infiltrations on "Ch8" or the cryogenic abstract-dub of the final "Ch10". NHK's entity could maybe occupy some recess of post-post-techno zone, but I think you could encounter life-forms even beyond this seemingly inaccessible place.

Mark Vernon: Things That Were Missed In The Clamour For Calm

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 23 2015
Artist: Mark Vernon (@)
Title: Things That Were Missed In The Clamour For Calm
Format: CD
Label: 3LEAVES (@)
Rated: *****
Glasgow-based radio producer and sound artist Mark Vernon could forget sun tan lotion, underwear, socks, kleenex, the battery charger of his mobile phone or even his wallet in the luggage every time he goes somewhere, but listeners should hope he won't forget microphones and recorders. The title of this new release, "Things That Were Missed in the Clamour for Calm", could let you think you are going to listen a sort of soundscape, but it's what most of listeners could match to the concept of travelogue or aural documentary or it could be rather described as an immersive jigsaw puzzle where he assembled many field recordings he grabbed during his journey in Sri Lanka. The portraits and the images he can project in listener's mind are very different so that your ear-drum could be suddenly immersed in amidst busy car traffic of Colombo streets and get conveyed in the middle of some crawling woodland. The place where he managed toi record what sounds like a distant club playing Bronski Beat around 23rd minute or how Mark's mics encountered some bizarre versions of Beethoven's "For Elise" in Sri Lanka will maybe remain a mystery, but this 54 minutes lasting sonic exploration of that remote place, which digged into the sound of Sri Lanka so deeply that his mics seem to have reached temples, markets, beaches and even automatic replies of telephone companies or Tv/radio broadcasting, is rich of really immersive moments that he masterfully reassembled in his studio.

Udo Schindler & Manon-Liu Winter: form & material

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 18 2015
Artist: Udo Schindler & Manon-Liu Winter (@)
Title: form & material
Format: CD
Label: Creative Sources (@)
Rated: *****
This is the second recording I introduce on this zine that the appreciated maximalist Portuguese label Creative Sources took from the vibrant house of Udo Schindler, after the one where his hospitable and brilliant owner met Austrian pianist Elisabeth Harnik, who performed on Udo's Pleyetl piano - already successfully tested by renowned musicians such as Hans Poppel, Masako Ohta, Katharina Weber, Izumi Ise and Alexa Montani - and it seems that it won't be the last release that came from his SALON fur Klang + Kunst for the aural pleasure of sonci diggers. Besides being a sort of intimate dandy place for experimental performers and musicians, Udo's salon is becoming a proper forge of fine soundscapes and the one he made together with another inventive Austrian pianist Manon-Liu Winter, who improvised a performance on 30th November 2012 after she accepted the invitation by Udo to join his salon after he got positively impressed by her performance with Franz Hautzinger at Kaleidophon Festival in 2009, is really amazing for the impressive versatility as well as for the bizarre techniques she tests in order to widen the performative and sonic possibilities of piano, which is evident since the opening track where the faintly feverish cadence of the first seconds suddenly turns into almost menacing smothered rumbles before sliding into a tricky delicate phrasing on the following track, which gradually twist along itself by getting a proper tonal tangle where Udo seems to do a series of ribbond by means of his soprano saxophone. The whole release is a carousel of musical suggestions, ranging from abstract meditations such as the narcotic fifth track to strange declensions of chamber music ("liudo 7", "liudo 4") and deviously eruptive moments such as the above mentioned second track till the wonderful final "liudo" where the seemingly exhausted performers manage to set a really breathtaking piece up.

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