mercoledì 31 agosto 2011

Zbigniew Karkowski / Kelly Churko - "Infallibilism"

No need to tell you who Karkowski is – anyone who's spent time listening to computerized harshness will be familiar with his no-nonsense, chip-on-a-shoulder attitude and a handful of good to almost great recordings – but I had to google to find out that Churko is a (younger) Canadian based in Japan who's worked with artists as diverse as Ilios, Tim Olive, Harris Eisenstadt and Paal Nilssen Love. Infallibilism, recorded live in Japan from May 2008 through February 2009, is exactly what you would expect: 32-plus minutes of white (grey, black and pink..) noise and crazed fragments of granular ball-gripping distortion – the lone exception being the subterranean tremors of "The Pleasure Of Interval" – with the customary threat for the ears if you try to raise the volume a bit more than necessary. Not an overly shocking record, but definitely up to standard in a genre that needs serious homework to be considered worthy of respect. Test passed.
- Massimo Ricci -


venerdì 12 agosto 2011

Lawrence English / Tom Hall - "Euphonia"

Recorded throughout the first half of 2008, Euphonia sees Lawrence English and Tom Hall team up to explore a range of extended processing and compositional techniques. Inspired in equal parts by the openness of Cluster's Kraut explorations, echoes of Eno's ambient works, contemporary field recording and minimal electronics, Euphonia creates a uniform sense of warmth and glow - a sonic rendering of glimpsed views from some distant, hazy horizon.
Working with various instruments, analog equipment, electronics, as well as a variety of 'in the field' processes (whereby sounds created in the studio were re-recorded in various environments such as dilapidated water tanks on a farm), the record is a tempered with a sense of muted restraint and subtle variation.


giovedì 11 agosto 2011

Agathocles - "Mince Core History 1985 - 1990"

Agathocles (Belgium) is by far one of the most prolific bands of all time, and would you believe that this is the first time I've ever really heard 'em!? Sure, I've heard a couple of tracks here and there over the years, but this is the first time I've ever sat down, Agathocles release in hand, and listened to the band as a standalone. I think they've just released so damn much that I never even wanted to bother checking anything out because I knew at some point a CD like this would likely come along and throw out a shitload of tracks in well over an hour, collected all in one place. Their style is a sort of sludge/grind hybrid, swaying from bludgeoning slow riffs to blast beats and thrashy speeds, all the while with barked vocal growls unloading assaults galore. At times they bear resemblances to early Carcass (musically and vocally), but they definitely have their own vibe in that respect. And some of the songs (the band's earlier work from around 1988) that are faster and utilize a more straightforward shouting vocal approach sound more like fast, thrashing crossover hardcore with grind mixed in. Even others still are more along the lines of pummeling death metal (such as "Mutilated Regurgitator") - generally a bit longer and more involved than the one-minute grind tracks. Included herein are the Agathocles tracks from their split 7"s with Violent Noise Attack, Putrid Offal, Riek Boois, Blood, Nasum, Smegma, and Morbid Organs Mutilation, as well as the "If this is gore, what's meat then?" cassette, the "Cabbalic Gnosticism" cassette/7", the "Fascination of Mutilation" one-sided flexidisc 7", and the "If this is cruel, what is vivisection then?" 7"... not to mention various other rare bits and pieces. The tracklist reads 49 tracks, but there are only 41 on the actual CD, so I don't know if certain "tracks" have more than one song in them or what? There's definitely something wrong though, because I can't tell if any of the lyrics match up with the track numbers, but I know that many don't. The CD face does say that it's the "Mince Core History 1985 - 1990" CD, but the "Mince Core History 1989 - 1993" CD has 41 tracks, so maybe the wrong material was pressed onto some of the discs!? I'm totally lost. The mastering could be better as many of the tracks have different output volumes, but it's not that big of a deal as most of the recordings are really raw anyway. They never achieve a great deal of density, but very few tracks are unlistenable. I'd like to hear more bass in the mix most of the time, but there's not much you can do at this point. The layout is all black and white, but very thorough and well done. First up is a two page biography of the band, then four pages of lyrics, then a massive six pages dedicated to showing all of the old record covers and details accounting for where these tracks came from.


martedì 9 agosto 2011

Father Murphy - "...AND HE TOLD US TO TURN TO THE SUN"

Father Murphy is an Italian trio comprised of Reverend freddie Murphy (vocals, guitar), Chiara Lee (vocals, keyboards,
chinese percussions) and Vittorio Demarin (drums, viola, vocals). Born in Treviso, northern Italy, from the ashes of
freddie’s several previous musical projects, Father Murphy with just one album and a plethora of ep’s and limited
releases became one of the most mysterious and enigmatic musical entities coming out of Italy. If their first album Six
Musicians getting unknown was still somewhat rooted in twisted psychedelic pop and sounded vaguely related to Os
Mutantes and Italian psych pop masters Jennifer Gentle, the new record is a bold statement and a significant step
ahead - out of every familiar musical genre and right into the darkness. Recorded in San Crisostomo in Bombanella
church between the end of 2007 and the beginning of 2008, And He told us to turn to the sun maybe was born like a
rather weird attempt to a concept album about religion, but surely sounds like a collection of dark, foreboding songs
that crawl and twist and hiss like that old biblical serpent.
Think of Gnostic masses, kabbalistic chanting, chiming little bells, tinny Gregorian-like drones played on toy-keyboards
and the subtle but inescapable influence of 70’s Italian horror rock acts like Jacula and you will have some of the
ingredients that make Father Murphy’s music. Add a good deal of lunacy and enough humour to keep the gloom away
(just because you cannot take yourself that seriously) and the album is here, in all its strangely beguiling simplicity. Song
after song, from the initial semi-pop outburst of “We were colonists” to ascetic, almost medieval atmospheres of Go
Sinister, the entire lp feels like a truly different, warped experience. Think of Alan Sparhawk’s Low doing versions of
Twilight furniture from This Heat or Milk it from Nirvana. When the final, 10-minutes mastodon “In their graves” creeps
in with all the agility of a primordial doom-metal beast slowly sucked in a prehistoric swamp, everything comes full circle:
an uneasy, compelling, furiously heretic yet sandblasted in Catholicism little album that could come only out of Italy.


sabato 6 agosto 2011

In Zaire - "In Zaire"

Late at night, take a walk into the woods where bushes have eyes and join this twenty minutes long celebration leading the audience to a psychedelic trance.

In Zaire recently expanded from the original three piece of Riccardo Biondetti (G.I. Joe), Alessandro De Zan (G.I. Joe, Orfanado) and Claudio Rocchetti (3/4 Had Been Eliminated, Olyvetty) with the addition of guitarist Stefano Pilia (3/4 Had Been Eliminated, Massimo Volume) touring Europe twice and taking part at Netmage Internatinal Live-Media Festival with a live re-interpretation of the soundtrack of Paper Maché, a movie shot in color during the celebration of the Viareggio Carnival between 1956 and 1967 with an 8mm camera by Bolognese cinematographer Alessandro Mantovani.


giovedì 4 agosto 2011

Lago Morto - "Obitorio Veneto" DVD

Lago Morto is a band conceived by italian artist Nico Vascellari as contribution to the exhibition ‘Rock Scissors Paper’ curated by Diedrich Diedrichsen at Kunsthaus Graz.
Lago Morto is, in the curator’s words’, ‘a social punk sculpture’, a way ‘to turn the model of the cast band upside down. Lago Morto is about things that casting calls usually exclude - targeted aggression, unpredictable social effects and local politics’. The results is a band that toured for fifteen days in Vittorio Veneto in non musical venues such as bar, osteria, pizzeria, laundrete, video store etc. The LP contains all fourteen songs the band has created. The DVD contains a video from each of the sixteen locations of the tour plus an extra video playing the sixteen videos simultaneously.

part 1
part 2
part 3

mercoledì 3 agosto 2011

Family Underground - "Dagger in the Road"

Another chapter of the drone odissey by our Danish favorites releasing two side-long tracks of black magic.

Side A was previuosly released on a limited tour-tape by their own label Into the Lunar Light and sounds like the musical score of a horror film sang by a gathering of hungy wolves in a windy cave. On side B the drone assault ceases, to be replaced by reverbing guitars, obsessive synth melodies and echoed vocals building a psychedelic atmosphere. Released in occasion of their Italian Tour in June 2011.


Expo 70 / Be Invisible Now! - "Split"

That's a long and repetitive hypnotic mantra to elevate Your cerebral remains to an higher plan, - all built on four suites, two per Artist, USA meets Italy, both persuasive and sinister, like soundscoring a four-stages trip for the outer space. Justin Wright records an airy synth sample similar to a quiet respiratory movement, - then He makes a loop of it, to death, and it weaves a infinite carpet of sounds where an acoustic guitar advances solemnly, in a crescendo of fuzzy solo and symphonic multilayered arpeggio. The following obsessive satured signal of Seeker Of Sonic Auras wouldn't disfigure on A Clockwork Orange o.s.t.. - Be Invisible Now! will totally wash Your head, - a music bath of low cosmic frequencies and quirky drones, - a psychedelic slowdown into isolation. When suddenly the drums are calling, the doped ambient turns in a magnetic storm, and winds drive You by force along space exploration. L'Ultimo Giardino Dietro La Chiesa is the stronger venture here, - abrasive synths and minimal resonances as rythm section, a couple of harsh explosions, a long brilliant elucubration, - nothing left to improvisation: for sure, stronger and more mature indeed than debut album Neutrino.
Excellent split CD, warmly suggested, - especially if You dig Murcof, - probably one of best releases on Boring Machines' suicidal (as well always highly respectable) catalogue