Archive for February, 2016

Dale Crover of the Melvins is a fan and played on their last album, Ginger Wildheart is also a fan as he had the band’s frontman sing on his Mutation album which was released on Mike Patton’s Ipecac label. The singer from Godzilla Black also plays drums in Hawk Eyes.

‘The Other White Meat’ is lifted from the forthcoming album ‘Press The Flesh’, released 1st April via Quisling Records. It’s got the lot – chunky bass, lurching riffs, wild sax, and nods to The Blues Brothers. On one hand, it’s like a collision between Rocket from the Crypt, Hawk Eyes, Dead Kennedys and Shellac. On the other, it’s nothing like anything else. Get a load of it below, and hope for their sake they don’t suffer the same fate as Baby Godzilla.

 

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Consouling Sounds – 18th March 2016

Christopher Nosnibor

Oftentimes, I’ll set an album to play and, although listening to it, will find myself distracted by other things – email, Facebook, Twitter, whatever. We live in a world of information overload and we find ourselves multitasking – or distracted – constantly. It seemed fair to assume that I’d be able to get a few bits and bobs done while giving a first spin to Jozef Van Wissem’s latest offering. I was mistaken. But then. It’s not often I’m presented with an album that combines both elements of the avant-garde and the baroque, performed on the lute, an instrument I cannot help but associate with Elizabethan court poetry – not least of all Sir Thomas Wyatt, author of lyric verses ‘My Lute, Awake!’ and ‘Blame Not My Lute’.

Van Wiessem’s lute is very much awake, and there is no blame to be apportioned when examining his latest work, When Shall This Bright Day Begin. Am I uncomfortable with the absence of a question mark in the title? Yes, but that’s about all.

The Dutch composer has received no small degree of recognition for his lute compositions – which seems, on the face of it, a little odd. I mean, who plays the lute nowadays, apart from medieval revivalists, the kind of people who are heavily into LARP and all the rest? But listening to When Shall This Bright Day Begin, I find I’m doing nothing but listening. Van Wissem’s compositions and playing are magnificent, and utterly compelling. And it’s hard to imagine anything further removed from ‘Greensleeves’ or the Elizabethan court. The instrument may be ancient in its origins, but the eight tracks here aren’t steeped in historical reverence. Instead, Van Wissem conjured beautiful and timeless music.

If ‘To Lose Yourself is Eternal’ opens the album in what may be considered a fairly conventional, accessible, lutey way, the darkly warped swampy garage drone of ‘You Can’t Remain Here’ completely annihilates any sense of comfort or rapport that’s been established. Coming on like a ‘White Light’ era Swans track covered by Dr Mix and the Remix, it also drags in some fucked-up ketamine-slowed psychobilly leanings and imbue the song with a sense of absolute derangement. It’s genius.

By genius, I mean almost as genius as inviting Zola Jesus to feature on two of the right tracks. Another admirably idiosyncratic and utterly unique performer – not to mention a vocalist in possession of a stunning voice which is dramatic and stunningly powerful – she brings breathtaking dimensions to ‘Ruins’ with a suitably spellbinding performance that’s well-suited to the musical accompaniment.

The stark, dark country twang of scratchy strings, coupled with muffled samples, which make ‘The Purified Eye of the Soul is Placed in the Circle of the Eternal Sun’ and sort-of counterpart ‘On The Incomparable Nobility of Earthy Suffering’, pull hard on the attention.

Van Wissem shows admirable restraint, and contains the album to just eight tracks, with the sparse ‘Death of the Ego’ providing a delicate and understated conclusion which is enough to leave the listener sated. Bask in the glorious elegance, for this is music of the most magical kind.

Jozef Van Wissem

Jozef Van Wissem Online

keitkratzer productions (zkr0020) (CD) / Karlrecords (KR027) (Vinyl) – 26th February 2016

Christopher Nosnibor

Reinhold Friedl’s keeping it in-house with this one, with the Zeitkratzer collective which he helms performing a reworking of one of his own pieces. Kore is a development of his earlier Xanakis [a]live! (2007), which was an homage to French-Greek composer Iannis Xanakis. Originality may be dead, but artistic evolution is not, and here we see Friedel engage fully with the organic processes of influence and appropriation, and the idea that a work is never complete but continually subject to re-evaluation, reinterpretation, reconfiguration.

Pained screeching of tortured strings, form long, agonized screams and wails. On the lower register, cavernous rumblings and ominous echoes. It quakes and trembles and teeters and bucks, crashing and lashing, a sustained and calamitous wall of sound akin to how one may reasonably imagine a galactic storm. And it goes on for what feels like an eternity, light years of shuddering textural depth stretching out and fully enveloping the senses.

While the CD track-listing shows ‘Kore’ as being presented in just two parts, its mastering in fact replicates the vinyl edition’s four sides, with each piece between 11 and 16 minutes in length. As a single entity, it crashes and grates, squalls and shrieks, grunts and groans. And it never lets up, a sustained crescendo of sonic and psychic disturbance, a tempest of clashing noise, a raging storm.

The segmented arrangement works well: for while ‘Kore’ is clearly a single body of work, there are distinguishable differences between the four tracks. The second is comparatively quieter and less intense than the first, but the tones still forge sharp shards which slice into the cerebellum. Trilling and tweeting shrilly in the upper reaches of the spectrum, dark scrapes create perilous undercurrents which build in density.

Vast crashes of sound, immense gongs of violence slice the atmosphere in the third, more percussively-orientated part. It shudders and heaves, before finally screaming onwards through the tumultuous final 11 minutes. A blasting wall of noise which assails the listener with all sounds all at once, it’s an immense sound and an immense sensation that sounds like no orchestral work you’re likely to have heard before, and, quite conceivably, nothing else you may have experienced, period.

Zeitkratzer - Kore

zeitkratzer Online

Britney – Britn3y

Posted: 16 February 2016 in Albums
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Superstar Destroyer – 11th March 2016

James Wells

Not so much a drone as a collective groaning sigh prefaces the thunderous barrage of brutal rage that splits the speaker cones with pummelling drums and bursts of screaming vocal anguish and stop/start guitar judders. ‘Fully Ben’ assails the lugholes like Truman’s Water having been tortured, brutally murdered, butchered and cast forth to crawl around in purgatory. Fuck me. Three minutes in and I’m dizzy, punch-drunk, giddy and utterly bewildered – in the kind of way I like. And that pretty much sets the tone for this most manic, frenzied albums.

Where do you even begin with this white-hot torrent of noise? The tempos, man! The jolting, jarring, spasmodic guitars! What is this? It’s not metal, that’s for sure. Noisy math-rock? Math-rock is about intricacy, and this is intricate in terms of structure and changing tempos and time-signatures, but at the same time, it’s violent, frenetic. The vocals aren’t your regular shouty, screamy effort, either– this is the sound of pure mania, derangement to the power of 10. Not so much psychedelic as psychotic, the songs – the majority of which clock in at under two minutes – melt into one another, a crazed blur of spasmodic noise.

It’s intense, but not conventionally heavy: the guitars are warped, elastic, and don’t rely on hefty distortion. ‘Neon Python’ sounds like a collision of early Pulled Apart by Horses and second-album These Monsters – only with more drugs. Seriously, what are these guys on?

There are occasional breaks – ‘Sleep Now Dogman’ provides two minutes of respite in the form of some woozy percussion-free experimentalism while someone chunders their guts up, presumably a physical reaction to the exertion of the preceding track – but ultimately, this is beyond full-on, Especially after the, er, ‘interlude’.

‘Boss Moggy’ goes electro-math-screamo – or something and ‘Gum’ ups the tempo and the racket even further, achieving the effect of a sonic blizzard. You don’t know where you are or what you’re listening to, it’s a total whiteout. Britn3y isn’t an album – it’s a convulsive, abrasive explosion of noise, the aural equivalent of someone’s brains bursting from their skull while they twitch uncontrollably having been connected to an open mains electrical circuit. In short, it sounds exactly the way the cover looks.

If you’re in any doubt, I mean it’s good. Mental, but really, really good.

Britn3y

Britn3y by Britney Online

The Oscillation are set to release a new single on the Hands In The Dark label on the 12th of February 2016.

‘Lonely People’, the follow up to ‘Truth In Reverse’ is available to download and is another indication of what to expect from the band’s new album Monographic, which is set for release in March.

The new album, the follow up to their recent Beyond The Mirror compilation of rare and unreleased material, was self-recorded in London over last Summer and features seven brand new tracks.

Monographic will be released on limited edition vinyl, CD and be available to download, the latter two formats will come with three bonus tracks: ‘Alignment Zone’ (extended), ‘Lonely People’ (ambient) and ‘The End Of Conscious Thought’.

‘Lonely People’ is a rippling, twisted drone-out, a magnificent and majestic shoegaze slow-burner, heavy, heady and very cool indeed. Get our lugs round it here:

An ambient and sinister downtempo work, LDP 1 is the debut EP from south London innovator Zaflon. It contains two songs featuring Zaflon’s latest collaborator, Gilan_Music, among the cyclonic sub-bass, abstracted guitars, harmonic piano and crooked percussive breaks.

Coming on in places like a stark, electronic Cranes with some hefty beats, in other places it brings with moments that are by turns claustrophobic and immensely spacious with a woozy Ketamine undertow and a deep sense of yearning. It all makes for a set that’s pretty other-wordly. We dig it here at Aural Aggravation.

Listen to the EP as a continuous stream here.

 

 

Zaflon

clang records – clang032

Christopher Nosnibor

Stan Brakhage was an experimental filmmaker who sometimes closely shot glass objects. A huge influence on Frasconi, who sometimes makes music with glass instruments. The album title is a play on words, in reference not only to his artistic forebear but also the cracked quartz crystal bowl which was used to make this 20-minute musical work.

Having previously given the instrument a rather too vigorous workout during a rehearsal, Frasconi decided to explore its absolute limits. As Frasconi himself observes, ‘Glass is fragile. Glass is easily broken. Most glass instruments ignore these fact and instead focus on the material’s delicate beauty’.

Standing Breakage captures the artist’s efforts to complete the job he unintentionally began when the instrument – pictured on the front cover – became fractured. Ironically, despite labouring at the fracture in order to bring about the bowl’s ultimate destruction, he failed to achieve the desired moment of breakage. As such, for all its fragility, the glass held firm against a sustained assault.

An awareness of the circumstances of the album’s creation is, in this instance, integral to its appreciation, first and foremost, because if you didn’t know it was made using only the sounds created with a glass bowl, you would never guess that it was made using only the sounds created with a glass bowl. Because it doesn’t sound like it was made using only the sounds created with a glass bowl. In fact, it doesn’t sound like anything organic, or even of this world.

Standing Breakage finds Frasconi create an intriguing blend of chimes, rings, swirls and twangs, scrapes and chatters. Heavy, bulbous bass tones resonate, twisting and spinning upwards. Percussive thumps and sounds like scraping violin strings all emerge from the single instrument under the musician’s interrogation. Clanging, gong-like sounds crash. Eerie sounds that defy any obvious description, and sound alien and other-worldly in their origin drift. Booming synth-like notes balloon outwards, expanding in the air.

Tension mounts and builds. You sit, teeth on edge, fists clenched. You’ve no idea what will come next. You will twist and squirm. You’ll conjure myriad images in response to the strange sounds. But never once will you think ‘this sounds like someone pissing about with a glass bowl with a crack in it.’

Miguel Frasconi

Miguel Frasconi’s Website