I do not have a whole lot of material of mr. Nordvargr. He has made music that I like under monickers such as MZ.412 or Folkstorm, but he has made much more music that I do not like, also under the named monickers. Now I could get a cheap 2cd from Steinklang with a variety of projects of the man, so I decided to give it a try. CD1 contains tracks “From the Folkstorm archives”, which can be old tracks, unreleased tracks, alternative versions or live recordings. One track “…was not included on the “Victory of death” album due to its provocative use of old German speeches.” The larger part is the chaotic kind of noise, the kind that I do not really like. However Nordvargr uses a lot of low frequencies and sometimes industrial rhythms (elements that I often do appreciate) the first cd is mostly not for me. On the second cd we have “Nordvargr with friends”. The music is more varried, but still there is a lot of harsch noise. Worthy of mention are the technoish track under the monicker “D.I.N.” and a weird punksong as “Lorv”. There are some other names that I never heard of, but again I am afraid that most tracks are not meant for my ears…
Links: Nordvargr, Old Europa Cafe
This box is a registration of the first evening of the “Stigma festival” in London end november 2001. I’ve travelled to this little festival (see my report here) and I was surprised that after all this time a release dedicated to it comes out. A strange release by the way. Douglas P. asked if he could open the night with an accoustic set. A nice surprise, which you can hear here. The official and original fourth act, Nocturne from Germany, does not have a disc in this box though and I don’t know why. Another thing is that in two years time you would say that the recordings could have been polished through and through. Nothing is less true! It seems as if the recordings are taken from the microphones instead of directly from the PA. Especially in TDOTTC and Folkstorm you can hear the audience talking loud and clear. Further the sound is quite flat in most cases and for example Von Thronstahls ‘soundcheck’ in the middle of the show isn’t cut out. When you’ve been there, you know the situation, but ‘new listeners’ will see no advantage in it I guess.
So, what do you get? Inspite of the spectaculair descriptions you will read, this box is nothing more (but also nothing less) than a small box like TMLHBACs “The Smell Of Blood…” or Sopors “Songs From The Inverted Womb” (cd box size but slightly bigger). Inside are four slips with a disc in it and a small ‘poster’ with some live photos. The front cover is black with black letters.
DIJ has an 11 minute cd with 6 songs. Just Douglas with a guitar. There was almost no audience when DIJ played (even though the doors opened far too late), so the recordings are alright.
Von Thronstahl has a cd of a little over 50 minutes. They played tracks that were not yet released back then and different versions of known tracks. The recording is quite good.
The Days Of The Trumpet Call present their (to me) best material. In contraction to the normal releases there are some guitars and nice vocals which surely adds to the sound. As mentioned, the audience is too present and the sound is too flat. Short too, 16 minutes.
Folkstorm vs MZ.412 had a nice set which slowly builds up from dark industrial to extreme noise. Also here not too good sound and too present audience. The lenght here 42 minutes.
The price of this box is quite impressive, I paid E 40,- for these 2 hours of alright to nice recordings. Of course (again), I’ve been there, which makes this box a nice memory, but I don’t know if I should recommend this box to people who just like the bands presented. Should you consider buying it, be sure to be quick. There are 1500 copies, not extremely limited, but I suppose that with DIJ on it, it will sell out rapidly.
Cold Spring found 2001 material of this Swedish noise-combo that they forgot to release and the band decided to remix and remaster this material and make it into a goodbye cd, the last Folkstorm release. Funny, when I got the cd and saw the cover there is a picture looking awfully much like that on a t-shirt that I recently bought, but then the print is a mix between our Dutch royal ‘logo’ and the logo of the shop. Anyway, “Sweden” contains 50 minutes of extreme noise. Some tracks are fairly enjoyable with dark drones, some kind of rhythm or highly distorted melodies, while others are nothing but earcracking noise. I prefer the more structured kind of noise and this cd is a bit too much in the other direction. When I only pick the good tracks, this cd is still relatively enjoyable, but the other half is not really my cup of tea. Those who DO like the more extreme kind of sound will already be familiar with this Swedish band, have their other material and buy this last cd as well.