I thought I bought a couple of recent Unsound tapes, but this one proves to be a couple of years old.
“Treatment Plan” opens with a monotonous track that is almost dark ambient. Then follows another fairly tranquil track with a soft rhythm, but with a wee bit of noise that gets more noisy as the track develops. The last track of side A is another track with a slow rhythm and which becomes more of a typical noise track later on.
Side B opens with two tracks that are somewhat alike, but also the more interesting of this release. Low frequencies, an industrial rhythm and developing to something close to death industrial.
Like the other Unsound tapes, six tracks divided over both sides of the tape and with a total running time of about half an hour. Also the packaging is comparable to other (also later) unsound tapes: a cardboard slip.
This is still Exitus’ only release. It is not a masterpiece, but it is alright. If the project continues, I hope it is in the style of tracks 4 and 5.
Link: Unsound Recordings
So does my taste shift towards power electronics legends, or does their sound shift towards my taste? For decades I have known, but never liked, the noise outfits that started in the 1980’ies, but only recently projects such as Consumer Electronics and Sutcliffe Jugend released material that I do like (but I still do not like their entire back catalogues, so perhaps their music is shifting towards my taste). Now The Grey Wolves comes with a great album too. What is too bad is that this is their last album.
“Exit Strategy” does not have the typical TGW sound. There is no earcracking, unstructured noise with brutal vocals. Rather, there is an ‘ambient noise’ type of sound with distorted film samples and here and there a noisy outburst. Some tracks reminded me of Propergol and then I saw that Jérôme Nougaillon indeed produced the album.
Should I make a comparison to Propergol, mostly think of his “United States” (2000) / “Regegade” (2001) period to get an idea of the sound of “Exit Strategy”.
Not all tracks are great, but most of them are. Available from Tesco on vinyl or cd.
The new Ex.Order is not a new album. It is a compilation with ‘old and rare’ tracks, just as “War Within Breath“. But the tracks are not really that rare. They are mostly of compilations that I have, probably bought because Ex.Order is on them. “Juche” (2008), Zugzwang” (2010), “Heilige Feuer II” (2002), “Collapse” (2000), “Resistance” (1999)and “Don’t Hunt What You Can’t Kill” (2002). Then there are two unreleased tracks from 2008 and 2010.
The tracks vary in style like we are used to from Ex.Order. Some tracks are not-too-extreme noise (what I often term “ambient noise”), sometimes they even lean towards dark ambient. There are also extreme “death industrial” walls of sound with aggressive vocals and/or samples. Back in the days I was not fond of these extreme sounds (just read back my old Ex.Order reviews), nowadays I think such tracks are the best. Especially when they are as structured and ‘moody’ as Ex.Order can make them.
Indeed, the new album that is named after a book by William Burroughs, is a wonderful release of one of my favorite noise projects. I would not mind a release with really new music (or a compilation that includes material of the old 7″s), but I have another great album to play while laying on the couch with a glass of whisky and a book!
Link: Power & Steel (Loki Foundation)
I ran into Uncodified because I checked to see what Unrest Productions were available from the Tesco mailorder. Uncodified proves to be a productive producer. There is even a more recent album on the same label.
“Maybe All Is Not Completed” starts with a tranquil beat, but soon adds some noisy samples. Even though the opening track gets harscher towards the end, it can best be described as “ambient noise”. Nice, moody, dark and a bit ‘filmographic’.
The second track is more of a typical noise track. It is not too chaotic though and an alright track.
More of a “death industrial” sound comes at the third track, a great wall of noise.
This variety of ‘styles’ describes the entire album. It never gets really extreme, there are no “power electronics” here, but you still have to be able to stand some noise to be able to enjoy this album. I especially like the somewhat industrial tracks with low frequency rhythms over a wall of noise.
A pretty descent album. I will try to find some more releases of this very active individual who is also involved in varies other musical outlets.
Links: Uncodified, Unrest
I have missed this Malignant until I accidentally ran into it on Spotify. The album is good enough to buy, so I got myself a ‘physical copy’ as well.
Analfabetism makes deep, rumbling noise. Or perhaps it is noisey dark ambient. The ‘tag’ “ambient noise” that I use for projects such as Land:Fire, Gnawed or Isomer. These are the less extreme projects, I also use the ‘tag’ for harscher projects such as Theologian or IRM, but Analfabetism is more to the ambient side of “ambient noise”.
The album is has noisier and more ambient parts, but overall it is pretty filthy and dark, just the way I like it.
Ke/Hil is Brigant Moloch of Anenzephalia and Wilhelm Herich of Genocide Organ (and Tesco Organisation) and their latest release is not the first that I review.
Contrary to what you may expect, Ke/Hil is not an extreme industrial project like GO or Anenzephalia, but neither as odd and light as Dogpop, another GO/Anenzephalia collaboration. As a matter of fact, where previous Ke/Hil releases contain some harsher industrial and noisy tracks (but nothing like the main projects), “Syn/Anti Drome” is more a ‘noisescapes’ type of album with relatively soft noisy textures and distorted vocals, but not very extreme. Listening to the back catalogue of this project, “Zone 0”, the more industrial album, is with some distance the most interesting to my ears.
The album comes as a cassette with differing artwork and as an lp.
Thank you Noise Receptor for letting me know about the new Gnawed. I like the previous “Feign And Cloak” album quite a bit and I now see that I also thanked Noise Receptor for bringing that release to my attention.
“Pestilence Beholden” opens with a few pieces of dark ambient, but within the third track we go over to the death industrial style from the previous album. Well, maybe not exactly, the new album seems a little less as extreme as its predecessor, which also has more higher frequencies and overall a more noise-feeling.
The music is still very slow, somewhat rhythmic, with soundscapish tones and here and there highly distorted vocals. Maybe more like a ‘doom’ kind of industrial.
I like the new album. I think I prefer the rougher edge of “Feign and Cloak”, but the latest release may be more fitting to play when reading or something.
Links: Gnawed, Malignant Records
Apparently the first Steel Hook that I review. This is weird, because I have known this American project for quite some time. I guess I never came to buy any of their releases or I just never came to really listen to them before I started to enjoy noise better.
“Calm Morbidity” is not the first release on Malignant, a label that seems to be shifting more and more towards noise.
The album contains the wall-of-sound type of noise, dark, slow, dense, with extremely distorted vocals, but also more dark ambient tracks. I like this dark type of noise that is not as chaotic as some other styles. The album is not terribly good or varied, but enjoyable nonetheless.
Links: Steel Hook Proestheses, Malignant Records
Well well, a new Isomer, would it be more ambient or more industrial or even noisy?
It looks like Isomer continues the darker and more noisy track. “Three Kestrels” is a fairly noisy album with an industrial approach. Not that it is very extreme, but “ambient noise” is perhaps a bit too ‘ambient a tag’. There are 7 tracks raging from very nice to very good. Indeed, “Three Kestrels” is a very nice album.
Available on vinyl (if you are quick I guess) or Bandcamp download.
Links: Isomer, Tesco
If ever there was an album for which the term “ambient noise” was fitting, it would be this one. (Probably) too noisy for people who like ‘dark ambient’, but not as extreme as (some) noise releases.
IFOTS apparently likes to play with styles. As my opening of this review suggests “Family Survival Strategy” is relatively tranquil. There are still nauseous frequencies and unpleasant sounds, but this tape certainly is not as extreme as this project can be.
I do not entirely like the ‘soundscapish’ approach of IFOTS, but the odd closing track is very amusing.
Links: IFOTS, Unrest Productions