torsdag den 22. september 2022

 Nundata - Untitled



A kind of veteran in the world of modern noise music. Nundata hails from Serbia and has (so far) been responsible for over 80 releases since 2009. On various labels like Smell the Stench, Required Rate of Return, and of course Marbre Negre. This one came out last year on Mabre Negre, as a limited cassette edition. Running over 50 minutes, with three tracks divided into 2 cassette sides. 

The first track Monodata Neon Part 1 starts with a blast of blistering white noise, high pitched without any bass. A very narrow and needle-thin penetration of noise slithering into the listener's ears. Harsh and psychedelic minimal-harsh noise would be one way to put it. At times the slithering noise sounds like tortured screams, smoldering rusty pieces of metal, warped short-wave radios, dentist drills, and the sound of falling bombs from bomber planes. I am not even halfway through the first track, which is 25 minutes long! The whole recording is being developed and warped throughout the entire track, lovely kind of live-feeling going on in here. Great noise! The looped noise at the ending is great, lovely rhythmic touch there. 

The rhythmic touch continues further on the second track Monodata Neon Part 2. While the punctuating sound-bits float above the listener like a noisy cloud. The distortion is soo tense here, that it sounds like bacon on a frying pan. Lazer-like sounds are added to heighten the psychedelic mind further on. Almost too many things are being added to the adventurous noise journey here, almost ending in harsh noise in the great cosmic!  


The last track called Mono No Fun starts with a recording of human voices. Sounds like some sort of political/religious speech of some sort, multilayered with added sound effects. Brutal harsh noise with that live thing again, honest improvisational brutality.

Quite a challenging beast I must say. It´s long, abstract, and incredibly brutal. Amazing that the artist could do these recordings without taking a break! A constant and menacing monster of noise, drowning and swallowing the listener into the world that the release contains. Bored with noise and need a new fix of extreme sound, go and look this one out kids!.





tirsdag den 20. september 2022

 Gespenst - Den Sidste Færd



The second time around I get to review Gespenst, and this is also their second album. The last album I reviewed with them was back in 2018, although it was released in 2016. This second album has been released in 3 formats! Vinyl, CD via a German label called Vendetta Records, and on cassette via Danish label Strange Aeons. About 30+ minutes in total, with 5 tracks on it. 

Cool and simple artwork, inviting the listener into a fantasy-inspired netherworld... not that far away from Isengard and Mordor. Nice and nifty-looking print on the cassette, and the inner sleeve even includes a lyric sheet. Again, nice design with a moody and picturesque design. 

The first track Dødsfærd (which is also the longest!) starts with a cold wind blowing through the leaves of trees, I could imagine that the daytime would be at nighttime of course. Slow and grinding black-metal guitar work with an epic touch starts the journey, with some cool-sounding drums (instrumental of course!). Kind of black-metal for doom-metal fans so far. I am not 100% sure, is there a synth in the background is it just the reverb of the guitars?. Nevertheless, the track gets more tempo. Why I don´t know, the grind of the slowness worked pretty well. This switch of tempo just sounds as if someone pressed the... well tempo button (FF) on the tape. It´s a matter of taste I know, as for me I have never been much for stuff that has to be fast (for some reason). The good thing is that Gespenst manages to hold the atmosphere through the entire track. I forgot to mention the vocals. Which I like a lot, never been much for the screaming gremlin vocals (that is). Heavy and deep vocals with some extra phlegm in the throat. 


The second track Besværgelse works as a kind of atmospheric horror soundtrack/ambient 1-minute intermission before we are submerged into the next guitar-driven track.

The third track Portal is a track without a slow intro but starts with quick tempos. Tempo switch to the slow also happens here. More of a straight black metal track than the first track. Less atmosphere, more action if you ask me. 

We change the side of the cassette and sink our teeth into the fourth track called Rejse. Starts with a slow guitar playing, which reminds me of the melody from the first track. Lots of atmospheric stuff going on here, love the part where you can only hear the bass. Starts with a slow tempo, and ends at a quick tempo.

The last track Intethed is something else. Ambient synth-work, depressing guitar-work (Excellent melody) with hints of ghosty human moans here and there. Sort of an ethereal/4AD (Cocteau Twins/Dead Can Dance) feeling here. A good way to end the album.

And that ends Den Sidste Færd (Last journey in English!). A moody and depressing piece of metalized rock music for fans of black metal. Well played, the sound is decent, with cool cover artwork and cool poetical lyrics. I would like it more if the lyrics had a certain conceptual influence on the overall sound of the album. If you don´t actually read the lyrics (which are good)) while listening, it will just sound like beer-chugging rock and roll music. But then again, I am not a huge fan of black metal. I am quite sure that veteran listeners of the genre would dig this album. 



søndag den 11. september 2022

 

Boredom Knife - Feticide / Tyhjio - 

No lives matter


Another deal/strike from French cult-label Abhorrent Creation Tapes, although this release isn´t on tape... But they are (as we all know!) delivering some killing-smashing industrial-noise releases on Compact Disc. The last 2 releases I reviewed from this label were by 2 acts from Japan (Third Organ and Government Alpha), and this time we will be looking at a split with two acts from Finland (The land with a thousand lakes yes, and the moomins!). 

The first act is an act called Boredom Knife. Hails from the capital Helsinki, and describes the act as experimental electronic noise eruptions. Several physical releases on different labels, and more digital releases on the Bandcamp link below. The second act is called Tyhjiø (means Empty in English), again some cool physical releases on more on the Bandcamp site. Described as noise created out of nothing.

The first track with Boredom Knife is called Feticide. A blistering wall of evocative industrial noise churns out of your speakers. Screaming and wailing machine sounds of utter hopelessness. The sound gets heavier, metallic, and more concrete while the evocative elements still being present in the background. A great back-to-basics sound here, a lovely expressive low-fi approach that takes me back to more soundscapes-orientated tracks by Con-Dom or the Grey Wolves. Tons of atmosphere here, and tons of brutality as well. Hell, I even want more physical releases with this act, which can be located via Discogs. 


The second track No Live Matter by Tyhjiø starts with a noisy hiss, with some ambient-driven death-industrial elements. Think the track is about Jim Jones and his last days with his cult. Suicide, and murder for those who didn´t want suicide. Don´t know about him, go and read all about them. The biggest evil bad-ass cult leader of them all, incredibly tragic. The depressive death-industrial/ambient elements work while the recorded tape of the suicide speech of Jim Jones runs in the background. Kind of a classic theme/sample in the world of industrial/noise music. The noise and the tape recording bring despair and desperation to another level. The sound intensifies with the desperation and the cries from Jim Jones´s cult. Very apocalyptic and very depressing, could work well as a soundtrack for a Jim Jones documentary. Not as dynamic as the former track by Boredom Knife, but still the track has a very effective effort to give the listener a sense of dread. 

And that ends the Finnish split from a French label. A cool and short 2-track EP/Mini-album on CD with 2 acts. It´s good because it´s only about 30 minutes long if it was longer then it would be a slight case of over bombing! An effective, dark, and small cocktail to end the party at the local noise party, to end it with a whimper (and not a bang!). As depressive as it might sound, the release (and the acts) do share a lot of charms with it. The whole back-to-basics idea works here, and I have a feeling that the two acts had (maybe) an idea of what kind of sound/feeling their split should have. Too many acts end up doing splits without having a specific idea/theme to work towards, here you have a feeling that the two acts have worked toward a common goal. Need noise for the upcoming apocalypse, here it is!. 



Bandcamp (label):

Bandcamp (Boredome Knife):

Bandcamp (Tyhjiø):




onsdag den 31. august 2022

 Sagenhaft - Hypnerotomachia



Very excited that I have been given the opportunity to review the latest with Sagenhaft. I started with this act some 5 years ago, I bought their legendary (and essential) classic The Legend of the Forgotten Reign from 1996. Back then I didn´t have any idea that I was to get in good contact with the brain pilot behind this project and review his stuff. Hell! I even thought that Sagenhaft was a relic from the past, never to be alive again! So here we are (nonetheless), Sagenhaft in 2022 with a new mini-album out on cassette via Moonlit Castle Records! A limited 50 copies cassette (link below!).

When I dig the cover artwork I usually mention this...as always. A lovely simplistic and epic thing to look at. The whole white-on-black idea works like a charm, and even more when you are dealing with something with an esoteric and archaic touch. Still don´t know what the hell I am talking about?! Then do yourself a favor and check out the picture inside the booklet...(while listening to the music). It all makes sense, believe me!

Anyways... the album has been called Hypnerotomachia? A supposed (and mysterious) novel from the 15th century. My research tells me, that we are dealing with a kind of mysterious love story. A guy seeks his dream girl via dreamlike landscapes, and he ends up being united with her at the fountain of Venus. The book/novel was also one of the earliest examples of the art of printing. 

Down to the music. The first track Sleepless Night, Magical Forest invites the listener into the world of the wild spirits of the woods and forests. Nymphs, faeries, fauns... you name it. And you are invited to join their pagan dance around the bonfire. The otherworldly music (and the eldritch melodies) seduce you to join their dance. And you do, and you say to yourself. This album is bound to be good!

The Second track is called Dance of the Nymphs. A very merry and seducing piece, more seducing than the former track! Thinking about some erotic and highly decadent scenes from that classic Caligula flick from 1979, or that scene in the first Conan flick where they attack the Thulsa Doom cult in the middle of the night. Love that pagan vibe going on, the mood feels just right... and authentic.  

 

The third track Ethereal Garden moves away from the dungeon-synth vibes and further into ambient and drones. Sort of an ambient version of the Moon Hidden Behind the Cloud. Beautiful and melodic ambient music with a kind of post-rockish texture to it. At this point, the listener will tell him/herself ´We are definitely not in Kansas anymore!´ A minor hint of unpleasantness hides behind the ethereal soundscapes, has the nymphs succeeded in leading us ashtray and putting us to eternal sleep?!

The fourth (and last) track A Kiss To Seal the Dream is the most epic and heavenly piece on the album. The place in the novel (obviously) where the guy meets the girl at the Fountain of Venus... still in a dream? The track and the mood of medieval chamber music enlighten the title of the track, it does make sense. Not always that dungeon synth makes me wanna move, but this stuff does. Something magical going on in here!  

A truly magical and good mini-album from the land of good wine, italio-disco, and fast cars! Been ages since I have reviewed something being close to dungeon synth, and what a treat it was. It was something just like that, it just had some extra (and good) side effects. It was an adventurous and curious recording. Not sure if I would simply call this dungeon-synth. It sounds like something that doesn't want to be looped inside a nutshell. This also explains the sound of Sagenhaft, that is that Sagenhaft is one of the few acts which existed way before the rise of the dungeon synth. And I think It´s great that they/he have maintained the independent aesthetic and mood from their first 1996 release. A worthy buy for a huge selection of listeners. Do give it a listen people!



torsdag den 25. august 2022

 James Osland - Lullabies For Nora



A new ambient album from the label-manager of Elm Records, James Osland from New Zealand. A limited CD-R, 50 copies available on his Bandcamp site below. 7 tracks, about 40 minutes in total. 

Think the album is meant as a tribute to Nora, who also did the artwork as well. Family-related, girlfriend... something like that.

The first track on the album is called Be As Wonderful Tomorrow As You Were Today, the most positive-minded track title this year on Kalteldur! Gentle and shimmering sounds of crystalized bells, a breeze through the pine trees, chill-wave synth background with a natural sound of a small river and some chirping birds. Incredibly pleasant and all that. I know I am mostly into dark and disturbing stuff, but I do like good ambient music when it is well done! This is well done, and I am enjoying it! Excellent intro track for the album. Kind of back to nature sort of, but with a futuristic touch to it.  

The second track Peace, Like Most Beautiful Things, Begins Small again starts with gentle and mysterious windy drones, slightly melancholic in a way. A kind of a desert theme from Dune spinning in my mind now, it has that retro early 80s ambient feel to it. Steve Roach and Brian Eno kind of. Incredibly dreamy stuff here, and incredible how it engulfs the listener. Some interesting and ethereal flute-like instruments in the background as well. Excellent!

The third track People Becoming More Than People starts with a cold and chilly synth, with gentle and soothing white noise in the background. Additional Aphex-Twin (early) ambient-melodies sets in. Hard to believe that it could get any better, but it did! Is it the sound of a humming distorted guitar in there, some string instrument I am sure? Some post-rockish texture here. Roaring waves of the beach get on the track later on. 


The fourth track All These Waves Of Human Kindness gets back to the chirping birds. Again, with the lovely mixture of white noise and ethereal synth work. The white noise bit does actually sound a bit like the needle on the record player. 

The fifth track Truly Happy Memories Always Live On remains in the cathedral-like forest with the sound of birds and woody keypads. At this point it does get a bit tedious, sounds like you are lost in the forest of happy memories. 

I will now jump to the last seventh track called The Hand-Holding Mine Squeezed Gently. I think I can hear one of those... water-springer? Lots of tiny drops and some dry grass on a hot summer day. Sensing a levitating sensation here, I wanna float upwards for some reason. Kind of laughing gas at the dentist, although this is without the drills and all that! A gentle ending for a gentle album. 

An album that starts in a very gentle way, and enters a more mysterious and intriguing territory of sound and expression. I would have liked more of that mysterious stuff, it does feel (when you are halfway through the album) that the mystery evaporates into thin air. Some new sounds or effects give the album an adventurous feeling. The best tracks on the album are tracks 2 and 3, hear them and you´ll understand! The album might have worked better as a mini-album, 3 tracks in total maybee! Give it go, and do give it a listen after a stressful day! It does actually puts the blood pressure down. 




torsdag den 18. august 2022

 Jugendwerkhof - Mernscharmierung



I have reviewed Jugendwerkhof a couple of times before, they have even been included as one of the top releases of 2021! And of course, I wanted to review another one of their releases. This one came out in the same period as the former Leibinfamie CD album (read former review), released as a limited 20 copies cassette on the Spanish cult label Marbre Negre. 

Again, I really dig the cover artwork for this one. Raw and simple artwork/photo showing a crumpling female statue of some kind, with a kind of decayed industrial design in the background. All in a sort of pale and brownish color. Sadly there isn´t anything more to look at if you open the inner sleeve of the cassette, some info about the titles of the 4 tracks and some contact info for the label. All 4 tracks on the album have been called Menscharmierung I, II, III, and IV. 

The first track starts with a metallic grinding sound with a thick and humming death-industrial bass drone in the background. An extra layer of chaotic distortion is added to the mix, giving the track a big dynamic space to be in. Extra dynamics are added to the track. Some of the sounds sound close to the listener's ears while seconds later they move away into the distance. A passive and aggressive track, offering something both for the fans of Japanoise (Incapacitants), early industrial, and power electronics (Mauthausen Orchestra).  

The second track has a cool and thumping machine bass sound with some distortion on top of it. Takes me back to Brighter Death Now´s I Hate You track. My kind of noise-tea if you please. Extra and painful layers of sound are being added to the lovely smörgåsbord. A more in-your-face aggressive treat than the former track. There are some cool sounds going on, not sure if they are vocal-related. Whatever it is, it is distorted and warped beyond human recognition. There is almost a kind of spiritual and paranormal activity going on here!

After a staggering (and punishing) 16:49 of the second track, the third track starts. More of a downbeat and noisy dark-ambient kind of a start. In the vein of Flutwacht, just a bit more violent. Impaling sounds of noise penetrate the listener while shredding pieces of flying metal shred the skin. It a more of a vortex of sound, sucking the listener deeper into the album. Lots of thoughtful stuff here! The vocal elements are soo good here, bits of painful human voices that can be seen and heard through the metallic chaos. 


The last track continues the harsh and relentless mix of industrial power electronics and harsh noise. Incredible brutal and incredible jaw-dropping in the expression. One thing I love about Jugendwerkhof is, that u get what you see. Their sound perfectly describes the cover artwork and vice-versa. The last track might just be the most brutal track on the album, which is hard to imagine considering the other tracks!

In my book, Jugendwerkhof is the best harsh-noise unit in Europe. Forget Macronymphia and Japanoise-wannabees, these guys are the real shit! Connect all the dots if you please. Harsh noise for the fans of power electronics, and power electronics for the fans of harsh noise. 


Bandcamp (label):

Bandcamp (band):


  


   



onsdag den 10. august 2022

 Kadaitcha - Fracture



I have reviewed Kadaitcha before, some years ago with their cassette album called Tar. This time we are dealing with a physical and digital release that came out on the fourth of February, this year. The physical release has (sadly) already sold out, a strictly limited 40-copies 7-inch, released via Ant-Zen! Would love to hold and see the physical release with my own eyes. Clear vinyl and each release have a unique design with an exclusive print on acrylic glass! A two-track 7-inch from this Ukraine-based act.

The first track is called Night. Radio-chatter, metallic scrapyard-scratching, a monotone, and slow ind
ustrial thumping rhythm with some excellent (and evil!) sounding east-European spoken words. Lots of industrial ritualistic undercurrents and guitar-driven psychedelia on top of it. Laibach in their Nova Acropola-era and then add some Deutsche Nepal in it. I fxxxxx love it! Would love 2 have more with this act. They didn´t disappoint me the first time around, and they haven´t disappointed me (yet) with this release.


The second track Rekill has a slightly Japanese horror sound to it. Something clattering, something weird is apparently going on in abandoned underground railway stations, or the deep labyrinth-like basements of hospitals. Electronic machine sounds, murky drones, haunted atmosphere, and warped radio noise. Kind of intro that makes the listener think ´What the hell is going on?!´, really opens the listener's imagination here. Live drums are added further on, with slightly-evil-sounding shamanic vocals as well. Again, an awesome track. 

A unique EP/Mini-album on a 7-inch released via Ant-Zen. I can understand why Ant-Zen wanted to release it, they sound like a very serious act! Kadaitcha has some ideas, and they sound good and unique as well. Kind of like a mix of different styles. Elements of drones metal, noise-rock, industrial and ritualistic-driven ambient. For any collector of interesting 7-inches, this one is bound to be a cult release.