Music Reviews



Jorome Noetinger & Lionel Marchetti: Mort Aux Vaches

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 11 2002
Artist: Jorome Noetinger & Lionel Marchetti
Title: Mort Aux Vaches
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Distributor: Staalplaat (NL), Soleilmoon (US), Demos (It), These Records (UK), Target (De) and more...
1966-class Joerome Noetinger (member of Cellule d'Intervention Metamkine, Mimeo and founder of Metamkine label and mailorder) and one year younger Lionel Marchetti (musique concrete composer and improviser for a number of different labels, including Noetinger's Metamkine) have been working together since 1993 as a duo or with other musicians. This CD (for the Mort Aux Vaches series) is what they call «absolute permanent anything», or improvisation with electro-acoustical sources and devices made of pieces and trifles without an external PA. This whole record is totally improvised and is living around low thin cutting ultra high pitched sounds, sporadic weird and wild noises and other almost inaudible things... The spectrum (rather amplitude-wise than frequency-wise) of this record is wide but its majority is low in volume so you tend to pump up the volume until you get scared by some piercing loud screaming larsen... Even though it seems to be overall fairly compressed, ifyou don't have good ears don't even bother with this 'cause there is stuff around 15kHz that you probably won't even hear if you've been listening to loud rock'n'roll during your younger age... ;-)

Thilges 3: Polka

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 11 2002
cover
Artist: Thilges 3 (@)
Title: Polka
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Distributor: Staalplaat (NL), Soleilmoon (US), Demos (It), These Records (UK), Target (De) and more...
16th Thilges 3 release and 6th release in Staalplaat's "Material Series" (please read the review of Heimir Bjorgulfsson's record "Machina Natura" in this section to understand what this series is all about and how it is presented to you): this one uses thin polystyrene sheets as the main material for cover and inlay card (so that is way the cover picture is simply white, cause so is the cover, just a plain white thin sheet of polystyrene!).
Thilges 3 is an Austrian trio that started performing live in 1996 experimenting with "live performance electroacoustic installations", which basically is a technology that uses analog synths instead of MIDI to allow different results, such as focusing on quadrophonic performances (instead of stereophonic) where the venue's size, walls, materials and other acoustical parameters define a new environment that, coupled with the listeners position and relative movement, allow for a new way of conceiving sound and rhythm patterns. All their performances are recorded and archived and only recently have they decided to make them public through a CD series consisting of 10 releases with similar 4-colour covers presenting a different concert (unfortunately narrowed down to a stereophonic recording); plus some other individual releases on different labels, among which "Polka". "Polka" is instead their first studio recording and the only instruments used to record it are a Doepfer analog synth and a Moog Prodigy. Like you may have expected they also are into visual arts.

Transgenic (trans-JEN-ik): Transgenic

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 11 2002
Artist: Transgenic (trans-JEN-ik)
Title: Transgenic
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Distributor: Staalplaat (NL), Soleilmoon (US), Demos (It), These Records (UK), Target (De) and more...
What at first sight may seem to you as post-core band Biohazard's new record, is in reality the newest work by the American project Transgenic, which is packed in a cool red safeguard specimen bag with a big biohazard symbol on it. So what is there so dangerous about this record? Well it is packaged with a sheet of prescriptions (common uses, how-to's, cautions, side effects and the like). It is supposed to be «used to treat symptoms of postrock malaise and other conditions such as extended drumsolos, jazzwank, shoegazing and studiotan». As by doctor prescription, you should also «not take sounds containing verse and chorus within 2 hours of taking this sound» and «not take 2 doses at once». Anyway... while I am going through my first Transgenic morning dose, I can tell you that it all comes down to pulsing experimental music with disturbing low and mid freq loops that serve to the purpose of trans-inducing beats and turn into obsessive repetitions with layers of sounds and other loops (vocals, noises) on top of it. 17 edgy hard-core experimental noise tracks with a sub-electronic soul and patterns of insanity (or sanity willing to cure to verse-chorus-verse insanity of modern popular music).

Akira Yamamichi: Semilogie (de la metamusique)

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 11 2002
cover
Artist: Akira Yamamichi
Title: Semilogie (de la metamusique)
Format: CD
Label: FIRE.inc (@)
Distributor: Staalplaat, Soleilmoon (US), Demos (It), These Records (UK), Target (De) and more...
Fire Inc. (Staalplaat network) put out japanese Akira Yamamichi's second record this year. Besides working with Roji Ikeda between 1990 and 1993, this 63-class jap engineer and film editor (graduated at the Institute of Sound Techniques) is also known for his work as Montage, a breakbeat/jazz outfit whose influence you can probably detect on "Semilogie" as well. In fact it all makes sense when you listen to these eight tracks. Even though they are based on experimental sounds, hi-pitched digital noises and percussive elements, there is a inside "force" trying to escape the rules of pure experimentalism to, maybe, move into different realms (if you look at it this way, then the last reverberated piano-only piece would almost seem like the chant of liberation and freedom, even considering it is digitally and intentionally audibly cut and edited to make it keep a certain unconventional breeze)... But I hardly thing that Akira is trying to escape his own barriers, in fact I believe he doesn't have barriers, and he proves it with an open-minded record playing with up-beat pulsing rhythmical patterns and minimal electronics relying on mainly mid, but also high and very high frequencies... The heart of "Semilogie" is really the "beat"... The essence it all comes down to, varying from turntable-like popping-noises to brushed snare (and hi hat) loops, from drum machine patterns to sticking percussion sounds. I enjoyed this record a lot.

Berliner Theory: Live

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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May 11 2002
cover
Artist: Berliner Theory (@)
Title: Live
Format: CD EP
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Distributor: Soleilmoon (US), Demos (It), These Records (UK), Target (De) and more...
This extended CD EP by Sam Auinger and Rupert Huber are probably the pioneers of "art radio". They started their individual journeys in the late eighties and have now extended their exploration to the internet (where instead of worrying about the bad sound quality the focus on what sounds are best to use with real audio technology). Their attitude and their knowledge makes every concert unique in the fact that it lets people have a glimpse of what could be done. This "Live" CD (almost 25 minutes, three tracks) was recorded in Berlin and Linz. The first song constructed around a loop of speech parts that gets so disturbing and obsessive that you might be tempted to skip to the next track, where calmer sounds, light sound waves, distant noises create a ghost-city-like ambience; the third track is built on a windy tone with hi pitch cricket-like sounds... The art work is very peculiar as well: a digipack cd with a screenshot of a Netscape browser opening a page of their website. Inside the CD there are 18 different (mainly austrian, some german) URLs related to "art radio", or like they say in german-speaking countries "kunst radio".


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