Zeitkratzer + Keiji Haino – Stockhausen: Aus Den Tagen

Posted: 8 February 2016 in Albums
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Keitkratzer Productions – 26th February 2016

Christopher Nosnibor

Reinhold Friedl’s Zeitkratzer collective are well established as trailblazers, tackling not only some of the most challenging composers and musical works, but also dismantling the distinction between genres and fields. They may use conventional orchestral instruments, but the sounds they produce are anything but conventional or readily recognisable as orchestral. It’s their unique approach to the creation of sound that has enabled them to not only interpret and perform, but do justice to, works ranging from Metal Machine Music to material by Whitehouse. Here, the nine instrumentalists are joined (for the third time) by Japanese experimental / noise performer Keiji Haino on vocals, and we find them revisiting one of the most difficult, divisive and groundbreaking composers of the 20th century in the work of Karlheinz Stockhausen.

The track-listing is the same as the Aus den Sieben Tagen album, recorded live by Keitkratzer without Haino in 2011. The compositions are the same and the performance similar in essence, but the overall sound achieved on Aus Den Sieben Tagen feels less brutal. But with restraint comes a greater sense of nuance, and a more menacing overtone.

After a silent play-in, ‘Unbegrenzt’ builds a long, low wheezing drone that sustains in perpetuity. Earthmoving bass tones growl in the sub-strata beneath it, while Haino emits droning, guttural incantations, groans and coughs as if attempting to expel his innards through his mouth before the sound once again fades gradually toward silence.

Emerging from the void, ‘Verbindung’ builds on the dark atmospherics which characterise the album, which simmers with, low, slow-building tension, scratches and scrapes, hums and hisses. Dank echoes and alien, animal sounds, snarling, growling, salivating dangerously.

The discordant brass and crashing, non-rhythmic percussion of ‘Intensität’ is a blast of anti-jazz, over which Haino coughs and splutters and heaves, howls and jabbers and screams like a possessed man in the throes of an exorcism.

Final track, the seventeen-minute ‘Zetz Die Segel Zur Sonne’ hangs on an eternal drone, the subterranean croak of the vocal conjuring images of ancient demons performing purgatorial rituals reminiscent of ‘Monoliths’ era Sunn O))). Truly, it’s a monster.

Zeitkratzer - Haino - Stockhausen

Zeitkratzer Online

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