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VITAL WEEKLY
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number 462
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week 7
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COH - 0397 POST POP (2CD by Mego)
MAJA S.K. RATKJE & LASSE MARHAUG - MUSIC FOR FAKING (CD by C3R Records)
JAZZKAMMER - MORT AUX VACHES (CD by Staalplaat)
KODA - MOVEMENTS (CD by Infraction Records)
ZIMIAMVIAN NIGHT (CDR by Infraction Records)
ANDREW LILES - NEW YORK DOLL (2CD by Infraction Records)
KAPOTTE MUZIEK BY - RICHARD CHARTIER / BOCA RATON (CD by Korm Plastics)
DARREN TATE / PAUL BRADLEY - SOMETIME TODAY (CD by Plinkity Plonk)
GIUSEPPE IELASI - GESINE (CD by Hapna)
SINISTRI - FREE PULSE (CD by Hapna)
JAKOB BRANDT-PEDERSEN - PAINTING SOUNDS (CD by Spacecontroller Records)
CONTAGIOUS ORGASM & TELEPHERIQUE - CROSSES DEEPLY (CD by Cool Anatomy)
ORIGAMIMETIC - ORIGAMIMETIC (CD by Spectre)
SYMPTOM OF THISEASE (CD by Thisco)
THE BEAUTIFUL SCHIZOPHONIC - BONJOUR TRISTESSE (3"CDR, self-released)
TWILIGHT CIRCUS - REMIXED: ABSTRACT BEATS (CD by M Records)
AH CAMA-SOTZ / ISZOLOSCOPE : CAMANECROSZCOPE (ECHOES OV WHO LIETH DEAD BUT EVER DREAMETH (CD by Spectre records)
NERVE NET NOISE - RADIO LIFE (CD by Staalplaat)
AKUVIDO - NEBENEINANDER (CD by Staalplaat)
JOHAN SKUGGE - VOLUME (CD by Mitek)
ATOM TM - IMIX MINI LP (CD by Laboratory Instinct)
KADET - THIN AIR (CD by Tektonic Shift)
BOKOR & PABLO RECHE - DIALOGUE (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
SILVERCORD - CHASING BROKEN SHADOWS (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
HIDDEN LANDSCAPE: LAKE VOSTOK (CDR compilation by Dreamland Recordings)
BOKOR - 30 DAYS OF NIGHT (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
BERTIN - KRAK, ARIA / TIK, MIKMAK (7" by Ole Records)
HARRY MERRY - VILLAGE LIFE IN 1905 / FOOTBALL-MATCH (7" by Ole Records)
THE HITMACHINE - VIEL ZU VIEL FINE / SCHONBRUNN (7" by Ole Records)
VELEHENTOR : BOEING - THERE AND BACK AGAIN (CDR by Gravestench)
OMNID - FRAGILE BALANCE (CDR by Retinascan)
EVERY KID ON SPEED - NEW BERLIN (CDR by Retinascan)
THEE MIGHTY KING KEROSENE - FAMILY ALBUM (CDR by Retinascan)
SPOKEN & FIELD: A COMPILATION OF FIELD-RECORDINGS WITH VOICES (CDR by CLaudia)
TIM COSTER & MARK SADGROVE - UNTITLED (CDR by CLaudia)
CLUB MORAL - USER HANDBOOK (CDR by Club Moral)
CULTURAL MIMICRY VOLUME 1 (CDR by Spirals Of Involution)

 

COH - 0397 POST POP (2CD by Mego)
The name Coh should be a household one by now. He has various releases on Mego, Touch and Rastermusic and worked with the likes of Coil. This new double CD should be regarded as a historical document. The second disc contains Coh's very first recording from 1997, which was released in an edition of 7 copies - for friends only. The first CD is a live mix of new material that should have been a new studio CD and these recordings are from 2003. To start with the second disc: Coh's earliest works are minimalist beating materials with clear influences by Pan Sonic, Raster Music and maybe some of Coil's work (at least in a title such as 'C Is For Sleep'). Coh sets onwards a rhythm, fed it's through a bunch of synthesizers, filters and sound effects and that's it. But his choice of soundmaterial is quite nice actually, clear, dry sounds.
On the live CD, from six years later, we hear how Coh's sound has progressed into a much richer tapestry of sounds, in which the notions of pop music play a role. Traces of small melodies, admist walls of rhythmic noise, less straightforward and more breaks. It's still a far cry from real popmusic of course, but it has left the strict minimalism of the earlier days for good and it shows the will to move towards post popmusic. Maybe on MTV in the next six years from now? A great retrospective document. (FdW)
Address: http://www.mego.at

MAJA S.K. RATKJE & LASSE MARHAUG - MUSIC FOR FAKING (CD by C3R Records)
JAZZKAMMER - MORT AUX VACHES (CD by Staalplaat)
Following their second CD 'Music For Loving' on Bottrop-boy, 'Music For Faking' is the third collaborative work between Norway's noise guru Lasse Marhaug and Norway's noise girl Maja S.K. Ratkje. The latter of Fe-Mail and Spunk fame and the first of Jazzkammer and solo fame. This album is the result of a day in the studio, with an all frenzy improvisation mood. No overdubs, just a bit of editing. Playing laptops, guitar effect pedals, theremin and god knows what else, the seven tracks are a pisstake at musical culture, at least in the titles of the pieces, such as 'Nihilist Ace Blues For Time Travel' or 'How Much Noise Can Make? (Let's Find Out)'. They thrown in sounds of popular culture in their blenders, and put the temperature all the way up. So, yes this is full blown noise, for at least 90% of the disc, but the two are capable to produce some noise that really matters. One in which something is happening, a dynamic field of sound, small stuff is enlarged and amplified, like a high pressure cooker. Noise as it should be. A lesson to study for many.
Last year Marhaug's duo with John Hegre as the ongoing Jazzkammer was in The Netherlands to play the Earational festival and took up the occassion to record a session at the VPRO radio studio and now being released in what should be known by now as the John Peel sessions for underground music: Staalplaat's Mort Aux Vaches series. This is not the first entry for noise in the series, following Merzbow and the Sensorband. Jazzkammer has one piece to play of sonic overload, building from scratch. A highpitched tone, scraping the surface with a contactmicrophone and from there building things up by adding layers of nasty frequencies. As the piece evolves the high end techniques of laptopnoise start to mingle with low-end electronics. This work, a straightforward, unedited recording is of course more uniform in approach than the edited work of Ratkje/Marhaug, and therefore a bit on the regular side of noise. But even at that, Jazzkammer on an ordinary day is way more interesting than many other noise heads on a good day. Perhaps not the greatest addition to the Mort Aux Vaches catalogue, but nevertheless still a good one at that. (FdW)
Address: http://www.c3r.ca
Address: http://www.staalplaat.com

KODA - MOVEMENTS (CD by Infraction Records)
ZIMIAMVIAN NIGHT (CDR by Infraction Records)
ANDREW LILES - NEW YORK DOLL (2CD by Infraction Records)
Infraction Records is a small US label with a strong love for ambient music. Out of the blue I got three new releases and one that is a bit older. Koda is one M. Derrick from Ferndale Michigan. I am not sure if this is his first release, but it's a damm fine one. Deep dark ambient music which makes it difficult to guess wether this is made on synths or guitars. Long stretched out pieces of shimmering tones, bringing out the best of Stars Of The Lid (that's why I thought of guitars), the early nineties phase of Vidna Obmana or the recent re-issue of Beequeen's 'Music For The Head Ballet' (coincident or not, also by Infraction Records). Or the entire Hypnos Records catalogue for that matter. Koda doesn't offer any new sightings on the shores of ambient music, but he plays some damm deep music.
Maybe the current state of economics in music business forces Infraction Records to stretch out to CDRs, maybe it's the fact that Zimiamvian Night, aka Mike Bennett, is just quite unknown. I don't know. Limited to 50 copies comes his release with two long tracks and one short one. Zimiamvian Night is also present in the world of ambient music, but in a much more abstract way. Whereas Koda present gentle tunes, Zimiamvian Night goes dark and abstract, stretching out sounds by computer means. In 'Between Moments', the longest track here, the music slowly moves out until it's gone, and then slowly built up again. Everything is done with great care, everything gets its time to develop. Not really a new sighting either, but certainly stepping out of the ordinary.
Andrew Liles may be regarded as Infraction Records' stable artist, since 'New York Doll' is already his third release on the label. This new release is entirely based on concert recordings by Liles in the USA, UK, Sweden, France and the Czech Republic. These recordings are now chopped up and re-assembled at home. As I had the pleasure to see at least ten of his concerts in the USA, I know that Liles doesn't play the same tune every night, but rather has a few guidelines, a few sounds, that he mixes around when playing live. Sometimes the emphasis is more the synthesizer/ambient part, sometimes the taped sounds (people talking, girls singing, a telephone conversation) play the leading part. Still there is a great sense of inspiration from the likes of Nurse With Wound, but Liles nevertheless has a strong identity of his own. His collage work is set against a hybryd of drone related music, that can suddenly change mood and texture. It works quite intense at times. This double CD shows that Liles is also producer of great concert sounds. (FdW)
Address: http://www.infractionrecords.com

KAPOTTE MUZIEK BY - RICHARD CHARTIER / BOCA RATON (CD by Korm Plastics)
The latest thirteenth 'Kapotte Muziek by' split CD, where the broken music is being reworked by Richard Chartier and Boca Raton. Chartier takes original recordings of Kapotte Muziek from a concert at Garage Festival, Stralsund, Germany, that happened on August 31, 2004. His part is a 20min quiet piece, a bit monotonous, without much happening or changing. Maybe low-droney track, but maybe too low and hollow. More diversity and adventure comes in with the four tracks by Boca Raton aka Martijn Tellinga. He reworks original recordings from a KM concert at Smart Space, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, March 11, 2003. There's something characteristic about Boca Raton's sound here and I'd explain it as dry and sober sound. Going in minimal ambient vs atmospheric microsound (no rhythm) directions, with gentle sensibilities of musique-concrete, electro-acoustics and such... Quite carefully done, no unnecessary things, more on the rational side yet adventurous with few bursty surprises. Boca Raton is working on an album with Freiband that should be out on Cronica sometime in 2005. That should be interesting to hear. (BR)
Address: http://www.kormplastics.nl

DARREN TATE / PAUL BRADLEY - SOMETIME TODAY (CD by Plinkity Plonk)
Two artists who've been making and releasing music before but this is the first thing I'm listening from them. 'Sometime today' can be filed under: late-summer-afternoon-walk-in-the-park drone. It's reminding of a hot weather summer afternoon walk with loved ones in an almost empty park, yellow leaves have falled from the trees, a pond... Inspiring atmosphere and music. Paul Bradley runs the label Twenty Hertz and Darren Tate is a part of the groups Ora and Monos. There's one piece on this release, almost 40 minutes, stretched atmosphere created with guitar, keyboard etc. (courtesy of Darren) and a laptop (courtesy of Paul in the town of Fethiye, Turkey). Paul have added some field recordings in the music, taken while visiting the Orient. Nice, peaceful, relaxing piece, patiently changing in few phases by adding layers of sound. Ok for both close listening or as a background while reading something casually, poetry recommended. (BR)
Address: http://www.kormplastics.nl

GIUSEPPE IELASI - GESINE (CD by Hapna)
SINISTRI - FREE PULSE (CD by Hapna)
Currentely, or rather, since some time, the Hapna label is one of my favourite labels around, combining sonic experiments with improvised music. The two new releases go in realms of improvised music again. Giuseppe Ielasi has played with the likes of Dean Roberts, Domenico Sciajno, Howard Stelzer and others. His 'Gesine' CD is his third solo releases, following a CDR on Absurd and a solo CD for Sedimental. His primary instruments is the guitar, but electronics play a big role and so is percussion. The six pieces on 'Gesine' continue where he left off with the previous CD 'Plans': Ielasi tinkles on his guitar, playing notes rather than chords, adds in a subtle way percussive elements or simply adds a layer of field recordings. And that's about it, nothing more - at least: so it seems. It's kinda like drone music with a much more musical touch to it, for his guitar playing is a bit folky, americana, Fahey like, but with a strong personal touch. The only thing that bothered me a bit is the low volume: one has to crank things up to enjoy all the sonic subtleness of this. But it's well-worth it.
Sinistri were formerly called Starfuckers and is a band of three persons playing guitar, computer, drums, sampler, synth, turntables and someone who does real-time processing/live mixing and his share on max/msp. Using elements from rock music, they play a very free form music, adding layers of electronics. These layers operate on either a very high end or a very low end level. Some very nasty low end bass where used. Sinistri play a slow, but nervous and hectic music, where the drums play in a rather jazzy way and the guitar in a free punkrock mode. The combination with electronics doesn't always work, such as the all too deep bass sounds in 'Bluesplex Pt 1', nearly ripping your speakers apart. Parts of this CD worked really well, but they could have left some tracks out, as far as I'm concerned. A minor glitch on my favourite label. (FdW)
Address: http://www.hapna.com

JAKOB BRANDT-PEDERSEN - PAINTING SOUNDS (CD by Spacecontroller Records)
Although I never heard of Jakob Brandt-Pedersen before he is apperentely one of the pioneers of the Danish noise scene, doing music for theatre and since about ten years he works with computers and sound. On this new solo CD he works with the Painting Sounds Instrument: a drawingpad connected to the computer which enables him to create a soundcomposition and a visual image of this composition at the same time. The four tracks on this CD have been recorded live in the studio and the images are enclosed on the CD rom part of this release. One could say that Brandt-Pedersen is his own VJ. It's hard to tell what the sound input is, wether these are processed recordings of something or perhaps it triggers software synthesizers. Sometimes this results in rather pointless noise excercises such as 'Colliding Clusters', which doesn't work as a composition itself. But in 'Green Shadows', a drone like piece, Brandt-Pedersen shows that it can work. Every piece seems to be building up, the drawing process made audible. The drawings are made out of small squares and the short films on the CDRom show how easy it is. It would have been nice if the software was included, so some home experimentation could have been carried out. (FdW)
Address: http://www.spacecontroller.tk

CONTAGIOUS ORGASM & TELEPHERIQUE - CROSSES DEEPLY (CD by Cool Anatomy)
Two veterans on the shores of industrial music, both projects run since the dawn of mankind (that is at least 15 years) but as far as my knowledge goes, they haven't worked together before. The cover doesn't indicate much of how this work was carried out, what stages it went through, but upon hearing this, my best guess is that it's the basic sound material by Contagious Orgasm which then went to Telepherique who added their brand of electronics to it and did the final mix. The industrialized technoid rhythms seem to me the Telepherique part too, but, as said, maybe I'm all wrong. The more I listen to this work, the more I find it an uneasy relationship, as if not all things mix up that well. It seems that there no real blending together of the sounds. As if Contagious Orgasm wants something different than Telepherique. The end result of this uneasy marriage is a dark toned work, tracks with no head and tails and no real tension in the pieces throughout. It might appeal to fans of either bands (and I don't regard myself a fan of either, but always interested in hearing their latest work), but I have to pass on, sadly enough. (FdW)
Address: http://www.geocities.jp/coolanatomy/

ORIGAMIMETIC - ORIGAMIMETIC (CD by Spectre)
Yet another collaboration-project released on Belgium label Spectre. This time between Norwegian composer Origami Galaktika and French Mimetic. Origami Galaktika is first of all known for his immersive and beautiful explorations into surreal soundscapes of deep ambient. Mimetic is known for his combinations of harsh industrial beats with dark sound collages as on his earlier releases on German label Hands Productions. This joint venture album is a compilation of live performances from three different locations recorded back in 2001. Musically the two artists first of all operates in spheres of subtle noises and deep rumbling drones. Only a few glimpses of melody occurs on the othwerwise dark and mysterious atmospheres. Overall the album finds itself in territories of ambience with only a few interventions of rhythmic texture. Once in a while whispering voices of French are heard somewhere in the distance. These voices, together with concrete sounds and various field recordings seems like the only signs of vitality on the album. Otherwise there is a fascinatingly strange impression of loneliness and isolation. Highlight on the 70 minutes long album is the 12 minute-track titled "Fem" starting out with field recordings and natural sounds turning into cold repetitive machinery loops first of all reminiscent of early Pan(a)Sonic. As the track develops, waves of white noise slowly intervenes the machinery loops ending up with far the most abrasive moment of noise on the album. Watching the Origamimetic concerts must have been an interesting experience. Great work! (NMP)
Address: http://www.spectre.be

SYMPTOM OF THISEASE (CD by Thisco)
THE BEAUTIFUL SCHIZOPHONIC - BONJOUR TRISTESSE (3"CDR, self-released)
As noted before, compilations are a drag to review, but when they have only three musical projects of course these things change. Two of these were unknown to me, and from Cria Cuervos I reviewed material before. The opening piece by Bio is one nineteen minute sound collage, which starts out quite promising in a droney way, but as the piece evolves, the sudden changes work in a rather odd way. The built up mood is gone and not replaced by something equally interesting. Cria Cuervos also has one lenghty track and just like his previous piece, reviewed in Vital Weekly 439, he continues the work with multiple layers of crackling sounds, here a bit more in drone fashion. It will turn out to be best piece of the release. The Beautiful Schizophonic is the only one to have three tracks, of which 'Soul Scanner' is a pointless noise excercise, 'Girl In Ecstatic Peace' is the total contrary piece: hard there with deep bass sound and 'Her Heart Is A Room Full Of Drones' sort of holds the middle: pretty upfront drones, which hardly move around. The second best piece on this compilation.
>From the same Beautiful Schizophonic comes a 3"CDR with seven short tracks and named after, if I'm not mistaken, a novel by Francoise Sagan. I forgot what the novel is all about, but there is certainly a sense of melancholism to be found in the music of The Beautiful Schizophonic. Dark drones, desalote piano notes and the repeated women's sobbing. The four parts of 'Post-romantic Drone' has a conversation between two people, recalling the work of Dominique Petitgand and is by far the nicest pieces on this small release. I think it would have been better to skip the first three and just have these four, even when they could have been executed better. A bit too lo-fi for me. (FdW)
Address: http://www.thisco.net
Address: <jorgemantas@hotmail.com>

TWILIGHT CIRCUS - REMIXED: ABSTRACT BEATS (CD by M Records)
I think this album will appeal not only to fans of Ryan Moore's mirror image Jamaican dub style, but also to fans of a more modern electronic dub-tinged sound. This album is basically reworked versions of some of Ryan's Twilight Circus Dub Sound System tracks. Remixed: Abstract Beats features artists some will recognize like: Meat Beat Manifesto, Phil Western, DMX Krew and others. It is apparent with this album and his last proper album Foundation Rockers that Ryan is willing to expand and explore new territory with Twilight Circus. This is mostly an instrumental album with the occasional vocal tidbits and samples intermixed within the spiraling and expansive perimeter of sound. It was a pleasure listening to this CD and I hope Twilight Circus keeps pumping them out. (CN)
Address: http://www.m-records.com/

AH CAMA-SOTZ / ISZOLOSCOPE : CAMANECROSZCOPE (ECHOES OV WHO LIETH DEAD BUT EVER DREAMETH (CD by Spectre records)
"Camanecroszcope : echoes ov who lieth dead but ever dreameth" is the result of a collaboration between Belgian Herman Klapholz (Ah Cama-Sotz) and Canadian Yann Faussurier (Iszoloscope). Both artists are first of all known for their explorations into the borderland between rhythmic Industrial and dark ambient. Iszoloscope had its debut release on Spectre Records back in 2001 with the album "Coagulating Wreckage" meanwhile Ah Cama Sotz has been on the electronic scene since the early 90's. In this joint venture the two artists have left the rhythmic textures behind to fully concentrate on the dark forces of ambient sound. On the album the artists deal with the term Necronomicon, originally used by H.P. Lovecraft in his book "The call of Kthulu". "Necronomicon" refers to the book of the dead, thus giving an impression of what to expect on this sonic journey into the deep caverns of hellish demons and ghoulish calls. The hour of dark ambience is built on haunting drones floating in between solemn chants and echoed micro sounds. Occasionally the sonic darkness are further strengthened by subtle drones of power electronics only to fulfil the sounds of evil. A remarkable thing about this album is the atmospheres of ancient Eastern culture that lies underneath the musical expression. Herman Klapholz found his alter ego "Ah Cama-Sotz" from Mexican mythology. His interest in the mythological world is clearly understated with this interesting collaboration album. Well done! (NMP)
Address: http://www.spectre.be

NERVE NET NOISE - RADIO LIFE (CD by Staalplaat)
AKUVIDO - NEBENEINANDER (CD by Staalplaat)
If my counting is correct this is the fifth CD release by Japanese Nerve Net Noise, a duo of Tgomago (mix, effects, treatment) and H. Kumakiri (original synthesizer, sound create [sic]). The two have been building their own synthesizers for some time, but for this new release, Kumakiri wrote some software that converts mathematics into sound. He did some experiments with these sounds and send them to Tgomago, who was then responsible for the editing and compositions. I think this new release is a major step forward for Nerve Net Noise. Their previous CDs were more or less excercises in sound, testing the possibilities of their self-built electronica, without caring that much about the actual musical composition. Here they do and the result is great. Noise is their territory but unlike some other Japanese artists, their sound is cleaner, emptier and more rhythmic, without reaching the operating theatre cleanness of Ryoji Ikeda. With the usual Staalplaat cover (print on jewel case, silver shiney paper) that brings back the memory of their material series, it's difficult not to think of the various other bands in that series, such as Massimo, Pure, Thilges 3 or some of the rhythmic work of Goem, Nerve Net Noise stand in a long tradition, not just repeating it, but also adding something.
On similar conceptual traces is Akuvido from the Ukrain, of whom I never heard. They too wrote their own audio software, which is enclosed on the CDRom part of this CD. It consists of some thirty lines which you can switch on or off at random and thus create your own soundpiece. Rhythmic patterns or more linear sounds can be choosen. It's quite funny to play around with and create your thing. Alternatively you can choose to listen to three tracks which Akuvido created themselves, all by matter of improvisation. Nice for sure, but playing around with the software is much more fun. I believe this can be used freely for any kind of work, which I am sure many will do. A pity that the cover text is hardly readable, but it's all on the CDRom part too. (FdW)
Address: http://www.staalplaat.com

JOHAN SKUGGE - VOLUME (CD by Mitek)
We finally have the long awaited second album by Johan Skugge in our hands. It is of course released by Mitek, label (owned by Mikael Stavostran) that treats contemporary movements in Scandinavian music. They have released various contemporary sounds by Scandinavian artists raging from noise, experimental variations, glitchy, ambient stuff to rhythmic electro pop mutations and straight 4/4 dancefloor housey music. One of those dancefloor oriented stuff is this album that is abundant with techy house rhythm, deep basslines, ambient melodies structured in minimal combination. Beautiful vocals are also present, giving to the dry rhythmic construction another dimension and freshness. Highly recommended for dancfloors or early morning afterhours. (TD)
Address: http://www.mitek-web.net

ATOM TM - IMIX MINI LP (CD by Laboratory Instinct)
Another release from Berlin based label Laboratory Instinct is in front of us. They have released couple of successful electro/break beat oriented releases. And here is another one produced by one of most prolific artist of today Uwe Schmidt AKA Atom Heart AKA Geeez'n'Gosh AKA Senor Coconut· This time it is mini LP signed by one of his many aliases Atom tm, first since 1996. Of course it is in manner of labels sound and orientation but still in his Atom tm sound approach. There are also recognizable Senior Coconut's latino moments and Geeez'n'Gosh's click hop /clicks n cuts. But everything is more into danceable mood, with funky elements, old school impression and of course regular cut up approach... Dancefloor orientation is here too. 'iLove (Easy Love)' is minimal old school acid dancefloor track. Acid is getting by through next track too, so contemporary moment of acid revival is here, despite sounding very oldschool. Next track 'Sexuality' is full of orgasmic moans and gasps in-between acidic background and slow rhythm. Dancefloor orientation is also present into next track 'Party shuffle', a classic acid house piece and of course into closing electro/breakdance funky tune 'Sorry i'm not the dj, baby'. Acid, house rhythm, glitch, clicks· everything is there and as it should be. Seven short track in less than thirty minutes but powerful enough to break dancefloor and to satisfy your listening pleasure! (TD)
Address: http://www.laboratoryinstinct.com

KADET - THIN AIR (CD by Tektonic Shift)
The for me unknown Kadet Kuhne is a media artist from Los Angeles, who dabbles around in installations, music and film. The pieces on this CD, perhaps his first, are 'comprised in sensorium, an interactive, audiovisual installation created with Reto Schmid', and 'each track is associated with one of the virtual rooms which are based on the RGB color spectrum'. The ten tracks are best described as sparsely orchestrated microsound minimalism. Things buzz, beep and drone like any good solid microsound work would do. Things are minimal in execution and traces of influences are pretty clear: Richard Chartier, Taylor Deupree but some pieces, like 'White Room' with a more rhythmic basis. Nothing spectactular, but at the same time, it's executed well. A good yet somewhat predictable work. (FdW)
Address: http://www.tektonicshift.com

BOKOR & PABLO RECHE - DIALOGUE (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
SILVERCORD - CHASING BROKEN SHADOWS (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
HIDDEN LANDSCAPE: LAKE VOSTOK (CDR compilation by Dreamland Recordings)
BOKOR - 30 DAYS OF NIGHT (CDR by Dreamland Recordings)
Four releases from the Dreamland Recordings label from Australia. Bokor is Zac Keiller, the labelboss, who teams up with the somewhat well-known Pablo Reche for a collaborative piece. This was the result of sending back and forth sound material for a couple of months. This probably added to the density of the recordings, as things are pretty layered around here. Hard to tell what the sound input is, but my best guess is some analogue synths feeding through a bunch of computer plug-ins. The result is a richly layered tapestry of ambient industrial darkness, one of the better kinds in its sort.
Silvercord is one Geoff Nostrant, who is currentely making film music in South Korea. The six tracks on his 'Chasing Broken Shadows' CDR are all influenced by early minimalist, dark ambient, psychedelic & space rock music, although the latter influence becomes only appaerent after the third track, with it's pounding drums, thick keyboard lines and psychedelic singing. The first three tracks are all mellow ambient, with a touch of darkness. Even when this is quite a nice release, I must admit it limps on two feet with three such different tracks on one hand and three on the other. But nice enough.
Bokor is also present on 'Hidden Landscape: Lake Vostok', together with a few other acts from the ever expanding CDR scene, such as Ellende, Aidan Baker, Wilt and Liquid Sphere aswell as some new names for me, such as Undecisive God, Siren and Gydja. All eight of these musicians operate in the field of dark ambient music, some with a touch industrial music, such as Wilt. Particular standout track is by Gydja, who offer a nice smooth, maybe somewhat slick ambient piece, but actually there is no weak brother around here.
Not officially on Dreamland is '30 Days Of Night', subtitled: music inspired by the graphic novel. Not a novel I know, but Bokor plays some nice ambient here, with more happening then just a few droney synth lines. There is the addition of percussion sound and guitars and things built up quite nicely, with some dramatic changes here and there. This album is mastered by Darren Verhagen of Dorobo/Shinjuki Thief fame and indeed it resembles that a group a little bit, but more in ambient veins. Maybe the crossover between Shinjuki Thief and Darrin's own solo work, which he has not made yet. (FdW)
Address: <zkeiller@yahoo.com.au

BERTIN - KRAK, ARIA / TIK, MIKMAK (7" by Ole Records)
HARRY MERRY - VILLAGE LIFE IN 1905 / FOOTBALL-MATCH (7" by Ole Records)
THE HITMACHINE - VIEL ZU VIEL FINE / SCHONBRUNN (7" by Ole Records)
Bertin here makes something someone might call outsider music. Not fitting any regular musical style or genre. Being rather childish in a positive way. A bit repetitive sometimes. Hints of idm maybe, but no precise melody, or even rhythm. Maybe idm music for the inhabitants of Pluto. I like it.
More outsider music from Ole Records (not from Spain, but from The Netherlands). And wowoow... Wait a little. This is just too outsider. And puts a big smile on my face. What kind of music would you expect from someone calling himself Harry Merry. And likes Beatles and Bach. I'm not sure if anyone could be able to explain what's going on here. Because it would be like explaining The Monty Python. I'll try: la-la-la strange singing, singer-songwriting irony...and I give up... Very very serious fun. Not for everyone. Hilarious. More compromiting than Bertin.
Maybe the most "regular" stuff on these releases comes from The Hitmachine. Oh, I'm a little lost here. Underground punk perhaps? At least it's easier for explaining: guitars, drums, vocals, all lo-fi and trashy. It's Trash music, with big T. I give up here, sorry... (BR)
Address: http://www.ole-records.com

VELEHENTOR : BOEING - THERE AND BACK AGAIN (CDR by Gravestench)
According to the website of newborn Russian label Gravestench, the idea of the label is to promote radical music, working in the fields of death, violence and terrorism. - A mission that certainly has been accomplished on this very first call from the label. The album titled "Boeing - there and back again" is created by the Russian project Velehentor and neatly packed in a DVD-case with a booklet and a set of postcards inside. The album has been based on two mini-albums both conceptually dealing with historical tragedies of mankind. First mini-album was released under the title "The rest of the Hiroshima" not surprisingly dealing with the Nuclear tragedy of Hiroshima. This part of the album opens with a beautiful solemn ambient-intro reminiscent of the opener of Wumpscut's milestone-album "Embryodead" (1997). Overall the tracks on this part of the album are built on melodic soundscapes and dark drones giving the right apocalyptic atmosphere. As "The rest of Hiroshima" fades away all kind of melody is annihilated and out of the ashes rises the last and most furious part of the album. This final section was originally released as a mini-album titled "Wargasm 911 : The best of USA". Considering the fact that it relates to the September 11th 2001-disaster the apocalyptic atmosphere from the opening section is not surprisingly intact here. But in contrast to the emotional Hiroshima-part, "Wargasm 911" is saturated by an extremely aggressive sonic expression. The ambience has been replaced by heavily distorted sound machinery. Thus we find ourselves inside a massive storm of crushing power electronics easily competitive to the most aggressive side of Swedish power electronics-legend Brighter Death Now. A great thing about this final part of the album is the application of processed voices and distant Gregorian chants giving an icy cold atmosphere. Also the rhythmic texture consisting of blasting Power Noise-beats makes this section a very interesting sound experience. Despite the fact that "Boeing - there and back again" actually has been built on two separately released mini-albums, the album as a whole actually works really well. There is a nice progression from the repressed and subtle darkness towards a more out-turned full throttle aggression. Excellent and brutal stuff indeed! (NMP)
Address: http://www.gravestench.dvhost.ru

OMNID - FRAGILE BALANCE (CDR by Retinascan)
EVERY KID ON SPEED - NEW BERLIN (CDR by Retinascan)
THEE MIGHTY KING KEROSENE - FAMILY ALBUM (CDR by Retinascan)
There are many CDR labels, but only few are really good in terms of music and packaging. Retinascan in Germany is one of the best. The Omnid release is packed in a DVD box, with nice printed (as opposed to xeroxed) booklet on good quality paper. This is the only way that releases on CDR can compete with CD releases, so please take notice. Omnid is Albert Casais, who plays guitar and max/msp software to pick up the guitar signals and process them. He has been around for a while, but mainly released stuff by himself. It's not easy to recognize the guitar in there, but once you know this, things become clearer, although in 'Pink' he manages to make the guitar sound like a flute. With his music, Omnid balances on the edges of computerized noise, but things are much more interesting than the usual noise attack. Omnid's music is unsettling, uneasy and maybe at times he's searching a bit too much for the right sound - ie some editing would be nice - but it's definetely a leap forward again.
After the recent Sound_OO releases, it's now time for a new Every Kid On Speed release. Toni Dimitrov uses various monnikkers to operate in various musical styles. As Every Kid On Speed he dabbles around in his own version of techno music, or rather the residues thereof. Using highly computerized and highly distorted samples, but maintaining some sort of strict beat (although he fiddles about with the rhythm), this is a highly rhythmic music. Not entirely music to dance too, this Every Kid On Speed. Sometimes too hectic or sometimes just too slow, as in 'New Berlin 6'. His look on techno is a crazy one, stepping out of any rigid boundaries, any real 4/4 material, but taking his own course on the subject at hand. For me this monnikker is of more musical interest than his Sound_00 incarnation.
Of an entirely different nature is Thee Mighty King Kerosene, the solo project of the guitar player of Unstern Bedroht. 'Family Album' is his third solo album. Guitars play an important role on this record too. Melodic guitar playing that is, layered, so that Thee Mighty King Kerosene plays against or with himself on these tracks. Sparse drums are present, slide guitars and on some tracks female vocals. Desolated music, roadmovie music, empty desert music. I was reminded of the first Pan American record with this one, before he turned more electronic and dubby and of course less the vocals. Nice solitairy singer-songwriter stuff, but without as many singing really, and therefor nodded by this reviewer. (FdW)
Address: http://www.retinascan.de

SPOKEN & FIELD: A COMPILATION OF FIELD-RECORDINGS WITH VOICES (CDR by CLaudia)
TIM COSTER & MARK SADGROVE - UNTITLED (CDR by CLaudia)
Two releases from yet another new label, CLaudia. The first is very clear what it is all about: 'Spoken & Field: A Compilation Of Field Recordings With Voices' - how clear can things be. No less than thirty-two artists contributed a short piece of field recording with in some way some sort of voice. Sometimes these voices are hidden somewhere in the recording, sometimes they are very much upfront. Cell-phone conversations, happy birthday singing, a swimming pool. You get my drift. Although this is quite nice to hear, you could wonder what purpose it has. Some of these tracks are very short, but have a nice quality making you wish you could hear more, like 'Tepid Baths' by Chris Cottrell could bhave been longer than two minutes. The most amazing thing however was that I hardly recognized any name in here, just Rosy Parlane is familiar. The other thirty-one sound artists were all new to me. Nice compilation indeed.
Labelboss Tim Coster (also present on the compilation) also has a more musical duet with Mark Sadgrove. Tim plays computer and mixer feedback and Mark computer and guitar. The notion of mixer feedback made me put the volume down a bit expecting some noisy affair, but I was wrong. Things start in an almost inaudible way, and slowly built from crackles, hiss, small drones - the usual ingredients for microsounding improvisations. They have a keen ear for the smaller details of the sounds they work with. Despite the fact that this release has fifteen start codes (with a total length of twentythree minutes), it hears very much like one work, even when things are a bit collage-like (as seperate tracks but also inside tracks). Good sturdy, not really surprising work. (FdW)
Address: <intergalactim@gmail.com>

CLUB MORAL - USER HANDBOOK (CDR by Club Moral)
As I noted before in Vital Weekly 441 Club Moral are back. In the early Belgium's prime force in industrial music, lead by DDV in vocals and AMVK on electronics. They were much more than just a musical duo, releasing their own cassettes, they had their own club, magazine (Force Mental, also ressurected, now as an internet publication). Since a couple of years they are active again (although never leaving visual arts in all these years), and the band Club Moral was a four-some for a while (now reduced to three persons), with whom they recorded 'Living (Stone)'. On 'User Handbook' they are also with four, besides AMVK and DDV, Mauro on guitars and Dylan on turntables - he left after a while. 'User Handbook', released by Club Moral - cataloguenumber following the old numbering system - is a collection of rehearsal room recordings. They are many short pieces of sound and nine 'real' tracks. All the lyrics in the real tracks deal with quotes from user handbooks of cars - maybe a recent new obsession of DDV, who sings full of passion of 'The cooling system is designed to operate under pressure'. The short pieces sound like taken from cars motors, but with the sound being feeded through a couple of The music of Club Moral is much more varied than in the early eighties, when it was synth, rhythmbox and vocals. The free playing of Mauro on guitar and the scratchy additions by Dylan make it somehwat more 'easy', but Club Moral will never play 'easy' music of course. Without betraying their roots of industrial noise and while maintaining their own sound, they have extended their sound and still play richly varied experimental music. (FdW)
Address: http://www.clubmoral.com

CULTURAL MIMICRY VOLUME 1 (CDR by Spirals Of Involution)
The Russian label Spirals Of Involution have released so far a whole bunch of Russian noise artists, but for their first compilation under the banner of 'Cultural Mimicry', they invited like minded artists from abroad too, so we get also Dave Philips, rm74, Kouhei Matsunaga, Phroq and Ohne (plus probably others which I fail to recognize as non-Russians). Noise should be regarded in the broadest sense here, from shrieking feedback to musique concrete collage (like the brilliant opening piece by Dave Philips) to almost inaudible subtle pieces by Kouhei Matsunaga and the politically inspired Ikeda like piece by Phroq. Because of all these stylistic
differences this is actually quite a nice compilation of noise. The opening by Philips is the absolute best track around this lot and rm74 his follow up, but overall, I enjoyed it a lot. Noise variety. Also enclosed are tracks by Kotra, CD-R, Akiko, Cisfinitum, Groyxo, Biomass. (FdW)
Address: http://ether.wasteland.ru/soi/

 

Correction: Pirandelo's Andrea Gabriele likes to point out that he was a member of Tu 'm, but not any more since 2002. His current incarnation is Mou, Lips! Sorry about that.