Music Reviews

DoNormaal – "Jump Or Die" – [Self-release]

abacus   6/17/2020   CD, Hip Hop

damn, you know im gonna dig it when they kick off the album w/ an ELO sample (Tbag, Minor..?) Experimental hip-hop / trap-soul / etc from Seattle originally from California. this falls under the “cloud rap” genre umbrella that fits so well in the PNW – woozy, dizzy, spellbinding. she tags grunge and I don’t think that’s just a geographical coincidence; there’s this raw, unfiltered delivery, she brings all of herself to this and lays it all out there, naked for all to see (not just a reference to the album cover). this is personal, this is real, plain-spoken and direct. she was 24 when she released this and she keeps producing forward thinking, genre bending music. keep an eye out, she’s gonna fly past us if she hasn’t already.

Teatro Satanico – “Tunnels of Set, The” – [Old Europa Cafe]

lexi glass   6/17/2020   A Library, CD

Two discs of underworld explorations from Teatro Satanico, the Italian post-industrial group that dates back to the early 90s. The current lineup is a trio that includes founding member Devis Granziera, accompanied here by members of Novy Svet, Le Cose Bianche and other shadowy figures of the European underground. This album draws from the writings of occultist Kenneth Grant, who described the Tunnels of Set as “a dark web or nocturnal network of paths” that extend through the subconscious mind. The album traces these twists and turns, with each track named for an ancient spirit that resides within the tunnels. Dark ambient echoes, chanting voices and psychedelic synth tones ring through the chambers, as ritualistic rhythms, from slow pulses to dark techno beats (found on T3, T7, T12, T16) quicken the step through the passages. On the final track of the Omega CD (T22), two minutes of silence precede the arrival of a final evil presence. A 2019 release on Old Europa Cafe.

Mitchell, Roscoe Sextet – "Sound" – [Delmark Records]

Cousin Mary   6/14/2020   CD, Jazz

This Sextet working from the AACM (Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians) recorded these tracks in 1966. It skronks, plunks, and shrieks and is not for the faint hearted. But it is lightened with flashes of grace and humor (harmonica on track 2!) that show its humanity.

Rites Of Thy Degringolade – “An Ode To Sin” – [Nuclear War Now! Productions]

whngr   6/11/2020   12-inch, A Library

I dub thee: Metal of the Flies.

Lurching, lumbering, Canadian (Edmoton) death metal  ca. 2005 repressed in 2015 by the illustrious and never missing Nuclear War Now!.

Gravel throat, killing layers, wicked timing, endless doom, abrupt despair, and cascading wrath. Blast beats, trashcan cymbals, grinding, burrowing, retching, riffs, slaughter, shredding. Track three is the stand out, with its killer hook, slashing solo and sickening time changes but there is much diversity on this album. Is that scratching on Thyhathbecomehim (A4)? Mysterious synth sounds, majesty, and misanthropy. It starts with noise, ends with flies, and left me aching… for MORE!

Thank you, Sir AIDS. Might I have another?

Scum / Unsustainable Social Condition [coll] – [Skin Trade Recordings]

whngr   6/11/2020   A Library, Cassette

Hot from the harsh presses at Skin Trade, this noise-wall split is caustic, terra inferna, cornea peeling red-line texture. I believe SCUM to be Japan’s Sou Inomoto. Active since 2010 his A-side is the  less comfortable one as the erratic frequency changes are jarring and otherworldly. Like TRON on brown-acid. Electronic helicopter space-warp. Sub-sonic rumbles, cascades of electronic lemmings plunging towards their imminent demise in an ocean of white noise. Automatons march to war with laser wielding cyborg-centaur as the sky turns to strata of glass and then implodes, sending panes sheering and then slipping through an anomalous atmosphere. Ruin.
Unsustainable Social Condition is Matt Purse of Oxen records (Los Angeles) and his offering has no nuance, no inflection. Just a pure white-noise avalanche with what might be buried vocals though often this kind of sound can blur the lines of reality for this miserable volunteer, exciting my tendencies towards auditory hallucination and mild psychosis, my mind searching desperately for patterns and meaning that simply do not exist. I imagine, if he had his druthers, U.S.C. would be capable of disrupting the listeners’ ability to modulate the volume, keeping it pinned with excessive amounts of amplification. However, I submit that at low volumes this recording could in fact (undermining to the intentions of Purse) be therapeutic. Possibly heightening the composer’s antipathy towards his audience, bolstering the prevalent paradox of the harsh noise paradigm.

Resuscitator – “Iniciation” – [Nuclear War Now! Productions]

whngr   6/10/2020   12-inch, A Library

Early (1994) stripped-down black metal from southern CA (Downey). 

Slow single note bends, cave toms, guttural breath, ugly death, crystal meth… Actually sounds more like beer and weed to this miserable volunteer but it is hard to know as this project is veiled in mystery like a proper black metal band of yore. Eschewing high production and virtuosity for atmosphere and anonymity. Not plowing any unfurrowed earth but pleasantly dark and morose like a well-worn flaxen cloak of eternal darkness, soft and saturated for decades with your own heretical musk. Sometimes you don’t want to be tested, sometimes you just want to embrace the night, raise your crooked hand to the moon, and scowl like a goblin. Probably the most unique thing about Iniciation from the perspective of 2020 is a slightly naive note of the theatrical; sounding like it they recorded their live set in a garage, including a bit of in-character stage banter which feels a little like meeting a smokin’ hot goth girl (in the early 90’s) who knows as much about Middle Earth as you do (nerd love being the sweetest, least judgmental, and most deeply binding emotion of them all) who then returns your awkward advances in kind. Like a soothing elven balm rubbed into the chaffed and bleeding fissures of your soul.

Corrupted – “Felicific Algorithm” – [Cold Spring Records UK]

whngr   6/7/2020   12-inch, A Library

Totally unlike their early detuned doom-sludge works, this album (which has no suggested speed) seems to forgo their previous instrumentation for a more computer generated one to focus on drone and mid to heavy-weight noise. Some sources state that it may in fact be the work of Martin Bowes (previous member of Attrition, Pigface and Engram) though I have not been able to find much support of the theory (found on Juno Record’s website), it does seem plausible as these tracks fall well outside the purview of Corrupted’s previous releases.
Side A employs an extremely slow and long start of an almost sub-sonic signal that may rattle volunteers expecting dirge but will eventually erupt into harsh stabs of red-lined white noise, tumbling shards of glass, and feedback modulated for listener’s distress which just as suddenly evolves into meditative waves of low frequency relaxation.
Side B is notably less discordant, employing human voices buried within tides of computer generated drone and electronic bubbles over sonic curios.
I find this album compelling but I am doubtful that the source is truly from Japan’s Corrupted. Quite an oddity, this.

Smell & Quim – “Cosmic Bondage” – [Hospital Productions]

whngr   6/6/2020   12-inch, A Library

Abhorrent Abstract Filth

Seven tracks of anally fixated atrocities suitable for none but the most disturbed and maladapted. It is as if a young deaf boy discovered they could prolapse their bowels at will and while using their crusty child fingers to pack their lower intestine back into their torso decided to invent songs devoted to the confusing sensations of pleasure and pain pulsing from their distended rectum. Squeals of feedback and white noise, loops of butt porn, balloons squeak and expire, drones, and steel Chinese finger-torture traps that echo and tumble into a drawer of stolen pornography from the 60’s, whines of tinnitus mixed with tweaker toys. Hatchlings chirp, mechanical saws attached to novelty phalluses, Geppetto’s donkey puppet comes to life with sphincters for hooves and an insatiable appetite for rectal intercourse and with every thrust of its wooden mule-appendage develops an inarticulate eruptive vocabulary derived from sado masochistic ass Bukkake. Also of note, this double LP was originally released in 1995 as a limited (100) spray-painted gold cassette with a tethered Barbie™ doll sporting a proliferation of pubic hair, or perhaps a merkin, so that the extended track lengths don’t fit within the current (anal-log) format. Excellent and unique packaging from Hospital Productions though slightly sterile when compared to the painful and repellent sounds within and surely lacking the repugnant donkey-punch of the first release on Stinky Horse Fuck.

Hallucinator – “Another Cruel Dimension” – [Carbonized]

whngr   6/6/2020   12-inch, A Library

Oakland’s Hallucinator plot to upend your sanity with this, their second outing and first release on Carbonized. Less cerebral than visceral, more power than virtuosity though the technique is excellent, this album is more about impact. It’s Darkthrone inspired death metal with psychedelic interludes. Fucking crushing riffs, chug-chugs, ripping, rending, slaughter, battery and assault. Guttural, blast beats, shredding, horror, derangement, doom and despair, dungeons, and spooky synthesizer bookends. Refined production and excellent composition provide a familiar metal formulae with a spattering of genuine innovation. Looking forward to hearing more annihilation from these local long-hairs, though this LP sounds heavily scrutinized and polished (while still raw and powerful) that they would be forgiven if they want a respite before their next offering.

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