tirsdag den 20. februar 2024

Spiteful Womb & DJINN - Euthanasia Is Not 

The Answer 

The second time we get to review the enigmatic mind behind a veteran in death-industrial/ambient soundscapes, this time he (DJINN) times up with a U.S-based act called Spitful Womb. Not knowing much about Spiteful Womb, Discogs and Bandcamp reveals the band as the sole workmanship of Nora Eglof. She has had releases out on labels like Signora Ward Records, Old Europa Cafe, and Death In Venice (just to name a few!). 

This limited split CD-R release from 2022 is actually a re-issue from a release that first came out in 2019. A nice, beautiful-textured, and thick cardboard-paper cover housing the CD inside. Front showcasing the album title and the track titles with a nice blood-splattered color on a white background. Almost resampling vomited red wine on a white sheet. If we open, we will see a big and nice picture of the two artists. Both with masks on. 5 tracks, about 30 minutes in total. So let us go! 

First, we have a go with Spitful Womb with her first track called Palliative. If you don't know what palliative is, then I can reveal to you that it´s about using drugs to relieve the suffering from... well dying I guess. Which is (in a way) prolonging the death = slow death. The gush of looped cold winds, and some metallic machinery banging in the background. Lots of spirits in here I can tell! In a way, it kind of takes me back to some of the (almost) erotic ambient tracks from the first Ordo Equilibrio album... just a hell of a lot more menacing. There is also that screeching flesh-scraping sensation usually there in classic death industrial, some interesting synthy drones fade in and out. Multilayered voices, talking like in some huge cathedral. A VERY good first track, seems very promising so far!

The second track with Spiteful Womb is called Groningen Protocol. And I'm here again, lecturing again! What is the Groningen Protocol?!. here goes : 

The Groningen Protocol is a medical protocol created in September 2004 by Eduard Verhagen, the medical director of the Department of Pediatrics at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) in Groningen, the Netherlands. It contains directives with criteria under which physicians can perform "active ending of life on infants" (child euthanasia) without fear of legal prosecution.

Sounds like some sort of gas escaping from a tiny tube, ghostly (slightly) melodic looped drones of spirits engulfing the listener further into the abyss. Strangely disturbing, but also strangely pleasant to hear. There is also a subtle thumping of ritualistic drums way in the background. I really like the way how this track builds up, it starts with you being in some of a pleasant dream trance but then you start realizing... you are In bloody hell... but for some strange reason... it´s still... well pleasant! Get the picture! Industrial drone-ambient stuff done very well, I don't have anything to put my fingers down on.

We continue with DJINN and with his first track called No Life...No Death. We are in an operation theater. The sound of machines peeping, whispering talk, and painfilled human voices being involved in the whole bloody mess. Lots of nifty distorted synthy bass stuff going on, the whole track has that... Hamburger Lady feel if you know what I mean? There are also some nasty sounds of tubes, sucking stuff in (probably blood) and some old people coughing because they have smoked too much. Excellent creepy-crawling hospital-themed track! 

The next track with DJINN is called The End of Hope! A weird sort of falling sound going on, and a high-pitched sharp sound as well. Is that the sound of a pile driver I hear? Sampled voices here and there, and a nice and looped sound of a... something.. sounds cool. The whole bloody track is a paradise for people who enjoy rhythmic sampling of industrial sounds, I loved it... I am guilty!

The last track with DJINN is called The Last Day. Hypnotizing synth and a sample of some talking about getting out of those straps. Looped death-industrial electronics and eerie ambient soundscapes. Actually, the soundscapes move between the speakers, which I like! Which ends the track!

And that ends the split album. An American & Italian death-industrial release. Equally terrifying for most and deeply satisfying for any death-industrial addicts. An excellent introduction for both of these veteran acts, if you don't know them or know where to start! 

tirsdag den 6. februar 2024

Chaigidel - Entrails of the Earth

A new and fresh label called Dark Odyssey Records has just released its first release (read former label text on Kalteldur, link below). Entrails of the Earth by an Italian project called Chaigidel. This one is a re-release that was originally released in 2020. It was self-released digitally on Chaigidel´s official Bandcamp site... and it was also released by Nailed Nazarene Industries, both as a digital one and as a CD? I'm not sure if the CD was ever released, there has been some strange talk about the dodgy label Nailed Nazarene Industries... but enough of that! 2 other releases can also be located with Chaigidel, and they have been released by Cryo Champer, and Cyclic Law (check Discogs link below!) 

A decent cassette re-issue with excellent printing on thick white paper. Even a cool-looking colored photo of the artist Mattia Giovanni Accinni (behind the project) inside the inner sleeve.

The album contains only 4 tracks, but 40 minutes in total!    

The first track is called A Little Seed. There is a deep and huge cellar room, with a huge sort of circular steel barrow rolling on a stony surface. The sound is very good I must say. Next, there is a sort of... shimmering bell sound with some harsh glittering on top of it, and a creepy slow-flanging drone hums like a ghost in the background. There is a seed growing all right, not a pleasant one if you ask me. Maybe, it´s a virus (if you look at the cover artwork). Additional scratching sounds and creaking doors are added to the creepiness. A subtle rhythmic sound there and more subtle dark-ambient unpleasantness are added. So far, it´s very adventurous! Lots of dynamics and color (although dark and bleak)! Very good first track, the perfect fusion between ambient and industrial!

The second track is called Under the Soil. It's a very slimy sort of intro. Imagine worms and snails crawling over you, while the ever-growing roots of plants and trees are squealing your body together. And that is the sound there is here, there is also a heavy and monotonous loop giving it all a decent claustrophobic feeling. Some nice and harsh metallic bashing here, giving it a nice industrial edge. 

We flip the cassette and continue with the fourth track which is called Sulfur, Mercury, and Salt.  A thumping bone-crunching machine... thumps and thumps in the cathedral, not that far away from the sound of Brighter Death Now´s Pain In Progress. Lovely heavy and minimalistic soundscape, with hints of a sound there and here... which somehow manage to disappear into the ever-engulfing darkness within. Some extra and mysterious looped sounds are added, which are nicely faded in and out. Again, the aesthetic and adventurous feel are still here, feeding our constant curiosity. 

The last track is the fourth album which has the strangest title... 16/4. Is it a date? Or is it how much alcohol there is inside a vodka shot with a licorice taste? I tried doing a Google on 16/4, and the first answer was the vodka shot with the licorice taste. But the whole track could sound like the actual hangovers. Can you puke or not, or should you just go back to your bed? Whatever! The track starts like a headache, with very high-pitched sounds and some subliminal heavy moods in the background. If you added some trip-hop sounds it could sound a bit like Scorn! There is also the presence of human voices in there, and some low-tech radio equipment perhaps? Low-tech and heavy harsh death-industrial sounds are added, maintaining that atmospheric clinical sort of vibe. The whole last track is a humongous-moody monster, which could have been released as a single mini-album/EP. Perfect soundtrack material here for any horror movie. 

And that was... the sound of the Entrails of the Earth. Horrific and classic Italian death-industrial with a clear focus on mood and ritualistic aesthetics. I was actually surprised by this since most artists I have come across (who have had a connection with Cryo Chamber and Cyclic Law ) always sounded so... sterile and clean. Maybe that is why Cryo Chamber and Cyclic Law haven't made a re-issue of this one? Perfectly executed industrial-ambient with a nod or two to the harshness of noise. I´m curious what the other releases sound like! 


onsdag den 24. januar 2024

 Maison closE - S/T

We get to review another enigmatic album release from Nuit et Brouillard´s side-label Force Majeure. A self-titled album by a project called Maison closE, which means brother in English. This (solo) project is being narrated by M. Kopfring. The material inside was recorded in 1998-1999, and the album was released on CD in 2003, not exactly new and fresh... but what the heck!

Cover-artwork shows some nasty nurses, and the backside shows a patient being ready for an operation of some sort... he might be dead? Inside we see soldiers marching, with a kid beside waving the American flag. Injured soldiers in war, with evil nurses in the hospital... waiting for them. Why the project has been called a brothel, with nurses?... I leave it at that! Anyways 12 tracks, over 60 minutes long, let´s go.

The first track is called Vent d´est - Vent d´ouest (East Wind - West Wind). A slow (and classic) and heavy death-industrial humming-bass starts, with... (I think)... the sound of waves on a beach? Took me some time to figure that out, the sound of the waves is offcourse filtered and altered in an interesting cool atmospheric way. Some eerie sounds pop in and out of the murky ambient soundscape as well. Nice start, very simple but effective nonetheless.

The second track The Game Is On, starts with a movie sample... which I don´t regonize? Irritates me as u all can hear, I'm really good at movie samples. The sample ends, and a grinding and monotonous industrial soundscape kicks in. Not that far away from the early Anenzephalia. More sort of clinical sound, which suits the artwork really nicely. Sort of a thing between ambient and power electronics, but without the vocals. 

The third track Most Of Them Never Come Back, takes one more sample from the same movie (I think). Sound of a clock ticking, and a male voice speaking... with a female. Talking about some war I think. 

The fourth track Jour De Gloire (Glory Day). Is it NOT a glory day, or is it? Layered soundscape containing sounds/recordings, probably from the Second World War. Sound of falling bomb-shelves, machine-guns, religious chants. Love the rawness of the recordings, might be a microphone recording some old VCR thing from an older telly.

The fifth track I Can Feel The Blood... Continues the recording/samples from the same movie. He talks about if it all is a dream, a recording of some doctor talking, etc. Nice menacing drone in the background.

The sixth track Temps De Guerre (Wartime) starts with a slowed-down looped alarm-sort-of-sound. Additional layers of filtered ambient noise are added later on. Like a brutal and acid-drenched nightmare.

The seventh track Ton -Nihil -Rec offers a true perspective on what death industrial is all about. You have the monotonous hum, a rising sort of tension building up, layers of subtle noise building up. And for the first time ever, we hear a vocal recording. Someone making a yell, altered by lots of reverb and echo.

There are a lot of heavy industrial soundscapes on this album, all in between the realms of power electronics, industrial, and ambient music. A bit boring in the beginning, BUT... it gets WAY more interesting (and good) as the album progresses. Some of the best tracks on the album are after when you are halfway through. Would recommend it to fans of German stuff like Anenzephelia, Dagda Mor, and Operation Claeanstrike.

Bandcamp (label):

Discogs (band):

Top 10 of 2023 by Mads Heilskov

1: Abscheu - Creed (Tesco)

On Creed, Abscheu once again delivers a slab of modern and crushing power electronics. Raw and to the bone, Creed is exactly the follow-up that I had hoped for after last year’s excellent EP on Unrest. Creed marks a new level of perfection from Abscheu and is my favorite album this year.

2: Am Not - Cold + Disloyal (Unrest)

Am Not is back with his signature brand of hi-fi and modern, yet uncompromising industrial/power electronics. Just as one has come to expect from Am Not, Cold + Disloyal is a thoroughly crafted and innovative album full of memorable moments and was a close runner-up to the No. 1 spot on this list.

3: Prurient & Genocide Organ - Carte Blanche (Hospital)

The two industrial pioneers have teamed up to create an album full of nuanced, dark, and brooding heavy electronics of high caliber. Carte Blanche was an anxiously anticipated release for me and I can honestly say that I did not expect it to be this good. This fills me with hope for the upcoming GO album.

4: Arktau Eos - Dormiveglia (Aural Hypnox)

The Finnish ritual ambient masters return with a new excellent piece of dark art with plenty of weird and eerie atmospheres delivered with authority and originality.

5: Halo Manash - Par-Antra II: TAA (Aural Hypnox)

The other Finnish ritual ambient masters deliver too! This is nature mysticism when it is most evocative. Like Arktau Eos, Halo Manash is highly original but delivers a more organic and acoustic kind of sound. They are certainly also equally good.

6: Grunt - Vieraat aivot (Freak Animal)

Grunt has always been busy in terms of releases. On this one, we get the capturing of two different live performances which are quite different from one another. As always with Grunt, however, you get a carefully crafted, yet raw, devastating, yet beautiful piece of industrial/noise art.

7: Apex Parasite - Erosion Of The Will (Dunkelheit)

Erosion Of The Will delivers raw as fuck skinhead stuff that will bash your skull in. It took me by surprise, but Erosion Of The Will has been in heavy rotation; it really is a beast of an album.

8: Prelest - Teodal (Freak Animal)

There is not much to say about this one – this is just pure industrial corrosion and rot. Needless to say, I love it.

9: Amek-Maj - s/t (Freak Animal)
Amek-Maj is one of the most promising new names on the industrial/noise scene in my book. I look forward to following this project in the years to come and, in the meantime, dive back into this great piece of noisy industrial muzak again and again.

10: HÖH - Epäjohdonmukainen (Freak Animal)

HÖH is lo-fi as you can get. The album delivers the crackling and corroding sound of rust and rubble in a ruined landscape. Full of slowly grinding dread, Epäjohdonmukainen is the sound of abandoned factories and polluted air. It is the perfect soundtrack to enter yet another year of waste, pollution, and suffering.

lørdag den 20. januar 2024

Inner Paradise - Yur​ō​pa Zindahb​ā​d

written by Mads Heilskov

Inner Paradise (भीतरी पैराडाइज) is (was) a Nepalese psychedelic tribal industrial outfit focusing on industrial interpretations of Jain mantras (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jainism). 

Yurōpa Zindahbād is their seventh and final release and features seven tracks recorded in various European countries over several years. The sound is quite diverse, to say the least, but can be summed up as consisting of cut-up loops of mantras and samples with tribal rhythmic elements and reverberated noises of different kinds, sometimes in the foreground and sometimes in the background.

These vary between what feels like field recordings from rituals and busy streets and more synthetic noise sounds. The beats and mantras at times remind me of 80s aerobic videos only to venture into what can probably best be described as primitive metallic synth punk (thinking of track 3 here), while most of them fall between “ethnic” field recordings and harsh noise territory. 

Throughout the tape, the pace and tone shift effortlessly between the somber and spiritual to the upbeat and almost comical, and most of the time I feel like I’m listening to some weird old field recording of an ancient mushroom-fuelled ceremony that is constantly being interrupted by commercials, billboards, plastic prophets, and street salesmen. As the reader might gather, the style and vision are unique but also confusing and truly psychedelic. It's not hippie-psychedelic, mind you, but more like a trip inside a mind that is utterly disturbed and caught between worlds. 

As such, this tape is caught between two worlds; an ancient one which is calm and with a spiritual focus, and a modern one that keeps zooming in and out on…nothing…and without aim while constantly letting itself be interrupted by buzzing noise. This, I think is the essence of Yurōpa Zindahbād: the confrontation between old and new, the spiritual and the commercial, the inwards-looking and the outwards-looking, the solemn monastery, and the noisy city. It thereby holds up a perfect mirror for us of a world that will destroy your soul and tell you not to worry because, you know, yoga, meditation, incense, a healthy diet, and green tea, all very refined and expensive, will save you and give you peace – at a very fair price. 

Of course, Inner Paradise says it best in the liner notes: “Everything is tracked, wear Nike, drink Coca-Cola, watch porn, exploit and be exploited, buy online and wait for the war. Always accept therapeutic capitalism, enjoy greenwashing, enjoy pinkwashing, get a tattoo, go to Israel for a Goa party, and love the war. The screen is mass destruction”. In sum: instead of buying your stupid meditation kit and green tea picked by children, buy this tape, and then go on and do something worthwhile with that life you don’t deserve.

torsdag den 18. januar 2024

 Arum Lilies - Subsurface Aquifers

Behind this enigmatic project/act hides Mark Groves. Who is someone who is in a lot of different bands, with band names like Collapsed Toilet Vietnam to George W. Bush! On top of that, he has several solo projects and he releases under his own name as well. Arum Lilies is one of his solo projects; this is the second album out. Both albums have been released by the same label called Death Continues. A prolific cult label with acts like Sutcliffe Jugend and Autopsia (just to name a few). This one is the latest from both the act and the label. 

The album has been released as a limited (120 copies) Compact Disc inside a nifty-looking digipack. Love the kind of sun-bleached colors on the photo/artwork, strange kind of nostalgic feel to it. The track listing is on the front, and the back (and inside) has some interesting poetry u can examine while listening. Inside there is also a photo showing the shoulders and half of the face of some man in a suit, probably a sleazy politician! 8 tracks, about 32 minutes in total.

The first track A Belated Arrival to Its Own Party... is a quiet party. Reverbed ceramic sounds, otherworldly radio noise, creepy TG´ish bass guitar sounds. I like it. An effective ear-opener if you ask me. A bit short though, really liked what I heard.

The second track is called 27° 03' 36" S 150° 26' 18" E. And I have heard some rumors regarding the name of this track! It's a geographic coordinate when using google it will present an event! Try it out yourself! There is a strange and highly filtered voice speaking, about something being dissolved in water. Presence of the desert heat and the bussing of insects. A chaotic (yet controlled) wall of noise hits the listener like the rain on a hot day... and then the track ends.

The third track Parallel Passages offers looped (and slowed down) piano and strings. Kind of makes me think of some of the looped ambient tracks by Boyd Rice. This ends, and it goes back to that TG bass sound with some excellent and atmospheric windy sounds in the background. The looped strings and pianos slowly creep back into the recordings. Kind of like Boards of Canada without the rhythms.

The fourth track Intrinsically Perverse Crystallum Orbis has the sound of dust on an old record player, looped drone´ish strings, and some cool reverbed sounds of someone touching a sensitive string. Elements of harsh noise are suddenly added and end when some looped violins and spoken vocals creep in. It all sounds and feels like being in a place where time has stopped. I get the feeling of old gramophones and dust.    

The fifth track The Tissue-Culture King goes further into the strange mixture of noise and organic ambient/drone. I really like the whole thing so far, mixing noise with pleasant ambient can be a tricky thing... but so far Arum Lilies has proved that it can be done. Strangely disturbing and strangely pleasant. 

The sixth track Strawman Oracle, has elements that we have already heard in the first track. But, it makes sense for some reason. The album runs totally like a movie, it´s basic story-telling using sound only. Lovely minimalistic approach here, and a creepy and intense Twin Peaks mood going on here. 

The seventh track The Late Great Planet Earth, is where it all gets... really weird. Starts with a rumbling explosion, and then it goes straight into some sort of religious cowboy muzack. Remember the Hank & Slim album (work between Nocturnal Emissions and Zoviet France) doing country drone-ambient?. Excellent contrast which (luckily) works with what we have heard so far! 

The eighth (and last) track is simply called Mirrors. We kind of return to the bussing desert, with a hypnotic and filtered looped tune/melody... which for some strange reason makes me think of Blue Monday with New Order. Layers of orchestral recordings in there as well. Lovely outro if you ask me. 

I would so that it is a very good album. Although short, but surprisingly effective! It creates questions and heightens the curiosity of the listener, the enigmatic soundscapes are so thick but, nonetheless light as a feather in the wind. The album works, in a way as when u are looking at a huge painting, but you are only allowed to watch in through various tiny holes on a wall. You get the big picture when you combine all these small impressions together. A worthy album to seek out for sure!.



søndag den 7. januar 2024


Emaztegaiak / PHLGZ - S/T

An older split release from E.C.T Recordings. A split between two noisy power-electronics acts called Emaztegaiak and PHLGZ. Emaztegaiak being translated to brides in English from Basque, and PHLGZ?... I don´t know what that means. Both acts are from the Spanish town named Bilbao. I know the people behind Emaztegaiak, since I have reviewed numerous recordings by them on Kalteldur (Various projects with various sounds/styles etc). Two members are Miguel A. Garcia and Enrique Garoz De Diego if you all should know.  On the other hand, PHLGZ is a solo project by JL Rey. A Spanish drummer in extreme metal bands (and horror/sci-fi illustrator as well!). The album artwork is (just) a cool-looking vintage-sort-of photo of some sort of electronic power-box. The cassette album comes in a shiny black cassette box, and inside you will additional album info and a nice and nifty-looking E.C.T Recordings flyer. The thing is limited to 50 copies. 

We start with the A-side, and the A-side is with Emaztegaiak. The first track with them is called Dorrea, which means tower in English. A heavy ambient factory-feeling atmosphere hums from the cellar, with some really demonic screaming vocals underneath it. Very spacy and almost surreal power electronics with lots of moody reverb. It´s not your typical kind of power electronics, being something quite else. Think you can compare it to the early Whitehouse with a touch of Nurse With Wound on top. 

The second track is called Zure Begien Barruan (Inside Your Eyes). Following the same sounds and mood as the former track, running like a kind of one-take session. The vocals are more alien sounding here, with some heavy added sound effects. Some of the background sounds kind of have that... church organ sort of sound. It´s all pretty brutal and surreal at the same time. The sound of some sort of... Lovecraftian god crawling and screaming out of the portal. 

The third and last track with Emaztegaiak is called Maitasuna (Love). The whole thing sounds like torture or hell. Constant surreal organ sounds with the sound of someone being in some torturous machine of some kind. Strangely disturbing piece for some reason, the most intense track on the A-side without a doubt.

We flip the cassette and continue on the B-side with the project called PHLGZ. The first track is called Quantionism. The sound of cosmic horror streams out of the speakers the very instant u press play. Sound of 1000 humming insects, strange dimensions, eldritch lifeforms, and stretched-out sounds being sucked straight into a black hole. Very surreal material here, and very evocative! 

The second track Autovolscient intensifies the experience further by adding heavier sounds with additional distorted noises. We´re still experiencing the horrible birth of an entire galaxy. Giving me that feeling that my stereo has turned into a far-reaching radio, and getting contact somewhere... out there. 

I think (maybe) that we have gotten into track 3?. Tracks 2 and 3 are sort of... mixed together. It´s called Theorybrok, and so far it's the weirdest and most chaotic track. Far-reaching stuff with far-reaching material. Action-driven ambient noise is at its best here.

The fourth and last track Deanimaliz contains angelic (high to the ceiling) ambient drones, random computer sounds and looped noisy recordings. Feels like being sort of... stuck there. Between two worlds, parallel universes? Everything sounds... out there. Great tracks by PHLGZ! 

And there we have it ladies and gentlemen! Brutal surreal cosmic horror to make Lovecraft choke on his morning coffee! Lots of space, lots of imagination, and lots of room for thought. Plenty of reasons to return to this Spanish split-album. These two great projects deliver something quite new! Great fusion between extreme styles in electronic music.