Album Review

Varg – “Ursviken” – [Northern Electronics]

Thurston Hunger   10/1/2015   12-inch, A Library

DM without the sparkle? Or maybe a dark sparkle? Often slow
rhythms from Swedish one-man outfit, call it downer beat?
If the drum machines move quickly, they do so in a sort
of Joy Division programming. Jonas R??nnberg is Varg, and this
is NOT the metal project of the same name. Here we have
industrial leaning techno with occasional hints of what
feel like IDM relics in the cockpit. Mesmerizing overall,
“Sharins Soner” elevates soft white noise, and buries the
beats beneath it. “Raggarsvin” stomps out a beat but
drags other creaks through reverb with some noise chirps
and breathy voice slices. “Ohn” discards beats for an off-world
landing on a shadowy planet, the album has its spacey ambient
stretches as well. Varg is most happy on “Asocial 46”
which may say something emotionally, assuming those 808 twinks
count as a form of happiness. But the double lp ends with a
sequence of a village without hope. Overall undeniably bleak,
but engagingly depressive instead of oppressive. If online
translating can be trusted, this is a release of “unalloyed”
(so no overdubs) electronic music. Also two of the track titles
“Ohn” and “Agngatan” are places near Jonas’ hometown,
where he intends to live and ultimately be buried. Hopefully
no time too soon, with plenty more sounds to come!
-Thurston Hunger

Hmmm, google translate is always a risk but the liner notes may
translate as

We have, I think, unalloyed arranged for the most part.
There are almost everything we need. I will live the
rest of my life , nothing should be done differently.
I have told them at that day when I go away , I want
them to put my ashes over Ohn . Where should i get end
my days . At the shipyard and the rock below Agngatan.
I think it is possible to live has , I know you can do
here, too.

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