Music Reviews



Muslimgauze: Return of Black September

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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May 18 2004
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Artist: Muslimgauze
Title: Return of Black September
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Rated: *****
Second in the series re-editions of older Muslimgauze music released by Staalplaat, "Return of Black September" (which is also the name of one of the most notorious palestinian terrorist organizations) presents yet another face of the artist's eclectic production. Originally released in a limited edition of 500 copies, the year 2004 will offer 800 lucky people (make that 799, I got my copy already!) the possibility to taste Muslimgauze's interpretation of what sounds like a deep, droning and disturbing ritual made of soft finger-tipping Darbuka percussion skin patterns, single hits of both delayed and unprocessed drums, loops of stringed wide-range instrument, field-recorded noises and voices, or just breaths and whispers. Quite alienating and scary at times, "Return of Black September" goes about its business in a continuous fashion, divided into five parts, totaling more than an hour of music. Experimental dark electronics meets tribal and ethnical mantras of ancient and distant culture creating a new breed of electrified world music. Altough the middle of the record portrays the most inspirational and every day life sounding part of this record, the darker and nastier side takes the lead at the top and the tail of the record, with increasingly predominant and saturated rhythmical grooves. Bryn Jones was so far ahead of its time, you can't even begin to comprehend if you don't know at least one tenth of his discography, totaling almost 200 titles so far.

Muslimgauze: Azzazin

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 17 2004
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Artist: Muslimgauze
Title: Azzazin
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Rated: *****
First of a series of four 800 copies limited edition re-releases of Muslimgauze's older material, "Azzazin" features 13 songs from the nineties and draws a picture of the artist that is different than the one we got to know. Surprisingly this album contains no trace of percussions whatsoever and instead presents a dry and claustrophic minimal electronics that sounds more like a Warp band or a project by some S.E.T.I.-inspired laptop artist than a Middle Eastern-inspired band. Outerspace sci-fi sounds meet with found sounds and human-made noises, isolationist experimental knob tweaking and mostly hi frequency material loops playing at random. Interesting art work, inspired by the logo and the lettering of one of the giants of gas and oil distribution in the (not so) free world. Due to its incomplete and almost too homogeneous nature, recommended only for die hard fans of his.

IVERSEN: Ten times me

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 17 2004
Artist: IVERSEN (@)
Title: Ten times me
Format: CD
Label: Bedroom Brain
Rated: *****
The self-appointed "un-noisy noise" could actually be a good definition for this new release by Iversen, who often reaches lowercase fields: vanishing frequencies, digital errors, bursts of (silent) noises - something similar to early Guenther, Richard Chartier or Immedia, but probably without any theoretical reflection about its nature. Like making discreet harsh noise, which by the way sadly resurfaces in full shape in "andre", along with tired loops ("som") and pointless synth improvisations ("habernaka", "internation"). "Caligual symphony J", which is a pretty good example of lowercase electroacoustic in its first part, is then ruined by more annoying synth sounds. It's probably a matter of tastes, but I think that synth wooshes are becoming more obnoxious than bad guitar solos, really. "Die buch", "Caligula Symphony B" and "souper" are nice isolationist tracks. I'd say that Iversen is definitely more successful when quiet and to the point; were it not for the noisy tracks, this could be a fine release.

IVERSEN: Gheye

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 09 2004
Artist: IVERSEN
Title: Gheye
Format: CD
Label: TIB Prod (@)
Rated: *****
A new cdr release from Norway-based soundmaker Jan-M. Iversen, owner of TIB Prod. and also active as Origami Klassika/Minimalistika/Maximalistika and Koff Koff... Cool red cover art and a mishmash of free-form glitchy digital frequencies & drones, electro-noise ("94"), dark ambient minimalism ("Stimulanse I Storm Og Stille 21" and "Stimulanse I Storm Og Stille 7"), quasi-cosmic synths ("Psycholimpics 3")... Some moments are good, but most of it is, in my humble opinion, too gratuitous, too out of focus to stand a concentrated listening. "Tomb Chill Stimuli", with its disquieting field recordings manipulation and a distant drone, stands above the rest.

TIZIANO MILANI: La macchina e la percezione della realtÓ

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 09 2004
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Artist: TIZIANO MILANI (@)
Title: La macchina e la percezione della realtÓ
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
After a promising cdr with the monicker TnoiseM (see archive), Italian experimental soundmaker Tiziano Milani is back with a concept release, "a series of sound observations on the function of man in relation to the development of machines, made through the continuous time leap between the Sixties (beginning of computer researches) and the next future". Almost mimetically, these 6 tracks seem to incorporate and, to a certain extent, digest all kinds of experimental electronics from old academic reasearch to nowadays laptop spree: concrete music, cosmic ambient, sinewaves, glitches, digital noise... Despite this variety, the different compositions are skillfully textured and mixed, so it's an organic whole and not a clumsy patchwork. The result made me feel dizzy, at times it's as if it was too cold and detached, but the concept itself obviously influences the "inorganic" nature of the work.


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