The over-active Hendrik Nordvargr Björkk has got a new project together with two other people. Even though two of their releases have been made available by Cloister Recordings (and two other by Old Europa Café), I have missed the project until this new release on Tesco.
By the way, there is one self-released EP in 2021 and all other six releases are from 2022!
What I have heard of the project so far is mostly somewhat typical, but excellent Scandinavian death industrial. On “Dødsverk” the sound is much more noisy. The industrial rumbling rhythms of other releases have made way for high frequency mayhem. I must say, that of all releases that I have listened to so far, I prefer all over this new one…
Concluding that the trio wants to explore different sounds and that most of their outputs are pretty good, we have another project to keep an eye on (and try to keep up with!).
More BDN and he is touring too. Roger Karmanik appears to have an artistic upliving. “Everything…” comes as a 10″, listed as “CMI-03”, but available from Tesco. It does not appear to be a rerelease.
The first track is a throbbing piece of industrial. Not as harsh as BDN can get. A good track. The next track is more noisy, but again relatively tranquil. The same can be said about number three, but this is more industrial than the previous track and reminds a bit of Karmaniks older (Lille Roger) material.
Then comes the absolute highlight of this release. “Love Hard” has a bit of a Thorofon approach. A somewhat ‘rhythmic noise’ rhythm with vocals of an artist I was not familiar with: Åsa Tedebro. She looks pretty classically goth on her Discogs page and appears to be a guest singer every now and then, but not an artist (or band) of her own. Her dramatic vocals go perfectly well with the background noise that intensifies and calms down again. It appears that the Swedish electropunk band Isotope Soap (that I also think I was not familiar with) have something to do with this track. It is a great track.
So “Release Now!” became a trilogy with old Cleansweep material and “The Call To Die” closes the series. Like the previous, it was released by Tesco.
You get material created between 1995 and 2004. Of the eight tracks I only knew one, “The Call To Die” which was on the live in Munich album from 2003. All other tracks are not even listed on Discogs, so they have probably never been available before and represent the “unreleased material of lost tapes and material” of Tesco’s ‘blurb’.
Style wise there are no surprises. Noise with slow rhythms, low frequency walls of noise and here and there death industrial. The material is good to amazing (how comes that a tracks such as “Algomania II” has never been released before?).
Most Cleansweep releases were from before I liked them, so it would be nice if other material will be made available again too. New material would be a good idea too!
The latest BDN comes through Tesco. It looks like this is the first cooperation between both industrial dinosaurs.
“All Too Bad” starts with a noisy piece of music, not the “death industrial” style of Karmaniks project. This already returns in the second track, which has a throbbing rhythm and far away distorted vocals.
Karmanik seems to have wanted to lay more stress on the noisy side of the project this time, as the following tracks are much more in a noise direction than death industrial. Usually there is some sort of industrial rhythm in the background though.
“All Too Bad” actually is not all that bad. Perhaps a bit short, but apparently I can stand the noise side of BDN better today than I used to. Perhaps I should start listening to older material.
In 1995 I was in contact with Mortiis and so I also came in contact with Cold Meat Industry. I bought quite some of their back catalogue, but it was mostly the more tranquil material that I was interested in in the beginning. It took a while before I learned to appreciate things like Mental Destruction and MZ.412 and even longer before I started to like Brighter Death Now.
Lille Roger I of course knew by name. It was the pre-BDN project of the main man behind CMI, Roger Karmanik. The original “Undead” 7″ has been released in 1987 so it was long sold out. Also it was the final release of Lille Roger (and the start of CMI). The old project nevermore appeared on compilations, so I never really got to know Lille Roger.
Apparently there has been more releases before “Undead”. It is not entirely clear to me what the story is about his box set. Discogs has it listed as a 2018 CMI release, but only recently it seems to have been made available by Tesco. Is that a rerelease or did the CMI version never come about? Or is this a cooperation?
In any case, you can get this 64 track compilation as a Bandcamp release, a 7 lp box or a 5 cd box. It is quite pricey, but it seems to look good. I got myself the cd set, but waiting for the physical version, I can already listen to all the tracks on Bandcamp.
“Lille Roger” made what we would call death industrial nowadays I guess, but for some tracks ther term angstpop may fit the bill as well. Industrial noise with slow rhythms, samples and vocals. The vocals are somewhat ‘atypical’ as they are usually not heavily distorted and often even sung. The tracks are not as dark as BDN can get, but the sound does often already remind of BDN. Here and there the sound becomes a bit lighter.
Some tracks are somewhat simple, but many tracks are actually quite enjoyable. It is not overly extreme industrial music, so it is relatively easy to listen to. Not bad at all!
I have known Dødsmaskin for a while, but apparently I have never reviewed an album of theirs. I remember liking the first album that I heard in a style that I call “ambient noise” with here and there some dark ambient.
Later albums that I heard seemed to focus more on the dark ambient, with only here and there a noisy tone. Also more and more atmospheric elements seemed to find its way to the music. Thus came that I only liked some of the tracks.
After releases on Malignant and Cyclic Law, the project has been picked up by Tesco. “Verdenssmerte” opens with a soft piano and slowly but surely the track goes over into a noisy texture.
The second track sounds a lot more interesting to me. A somewhat industrial dark ambient soundscape gets some noisy tones after a while. This track is nicely dark and in the style of Dødsmaskin that I like best, especially when things get even more noisy.
After a more experimental ambient track comes another nice noisy industrial track, an alright industrial track and an ambient closing track.
Tesco rereleased the 1996 debut album “Powerhungry” with an extra track.
“Powerhungry” is a classic in death industrial, a great album with brutal, industrial rhythms, violent vocals, but on ‘the noise scale’ closer to industrial than to noise.
The tracks have been reworked, some even stretched up and a 12 minute track has been added. It is called “Blood Is Tripping From Our Hands” (seriously) and it is a great Cleansweep track.
I have never been able to lay my hands on “Powerhungry”, so now I can get the nice looking digipack. Playing it was no problem, since it is the only Cleansweep album available on Spotify. Perhaps the other albums should be rereleased too!
Linekraft, a familiar name, but I have not reviewed anything of theirs yet, so I guess I did not have anything. There are many releases on a variety of labels though.
Linekraft is from Japan, but the sound is more ‘Western’. The album opens with excellent dark noise or perhaps even death industrial tracks. Industrial rhythms, walls of noise, samples, distorted vocals, it is all there.
From then on, the style shifts away from my preference. The sound becomes more chaotic. Some sort of industrial undertone remains, but there are more high frequencies and less structure. Some tracks even lean towards total (Japanese?) noise chaos.
Two great tracks, a few good moments, but overall this is not my kind of noise.
In the early 2000’s I bought cds from the American Somanbulant Corpse (later: Somnambulant) label. Usually in the DVD A5 type package. The had some projects that became legendary, such as Murderous Vision (also still alive) and Post Scriptvm.
Post Scriptvm later released an excellent album on Propergol’s Hermetique label (“Marginal Existence” 2005). This was a weird, dark, noisy ambient kind of thing. The sound shifted more towards soundscapes which appeal to me less.
Putting on “Variola Vera” I thought that this would be another such soundscape-album, but I am happy to say that the second track (“Born Into Trauma”) is an excellent piece of “ambient noise”. Not too extreme, a pulsating rhythms, highly distorted vocals, but with that weird Post Scriptvm Sound.
The rest of the album is mostly the strange ambient soundscape type of sound with only here and there the vocals and a more industrial approach. Interesting, different, but not too much to my liking.