Freak Scene #14

October 01, 2007

This week we have a special guest columnist, Dominick Fernow of Prurient and Hospital Productions. Prurient is one of the country’s leading noise projects. From his early work of harsh cut up wall of noise and self-flagellating live shows to his recent developments of dark tinged synth movements seen on last year's breakthrough Pleasure Ground album, Prurient retains the intimacy of a striking body of personal work through a slowly evolving consistency of releases. Fernow’s label Hospital Productions has released seminal works from a wide spectrum of the underground's best. Artists such as Wolf Eyes, Sickness, Hair Police, Burning Star Core, Double Leopards, Sutcliffe Jugend, Deathpile, Controlled Bleeding, Akitsa, Zaimph, Skin Crime, and many others have contributed dark, sexual content of various degrees and styles to this seemingly exponentially growing catalog. While reissuing early 80’s industrial classics like M.B’s Symphony for a Genocide, Hospital Productions continues to look forward, releasing music from the new generation of noise artists such as Craniopagus and Yellow Tears. Hospital has a new web store open and Prurient has a new collaborative CD with Kevin Drumm upcoming on Hospital entitled All Are Guests in the House of the Lord. Both are worth your serious time and intense, focused attention. On most days he can be found in his retail store located on 3rd street in Manhattan wearing an oversized Akitsa bomber jacket, even in the dead of summer. After the break are some new releases endorsed in his own words.

IRM, The Cult of Young Men [Annihilvs]

IRM is a third generation Power Electronics band from Sweden. They distinguish themselves from other Swedish PE such as Survival Unit, Iron Justice and Brighter Death Now. They're cleaner and more drone oriented which sets them apart from most PE in general, not only the Swedish groups. "The son puts a dagger on the back of his father,". What made them famous is they did an album called Red Album, followed by Four Studies for A Crucifixion. In a way they're linked to Hermann Nietch and have flirted with actionist imagery and themes but have presented it in a more austere, even typographic manner which is a common theme in PE, to rely on a blank mystery of words on a page which is ironic considering the "rap" of PE using violent imagery. The basic core of this release is drone, it could even be confused a BXC at its start, but they slowly weave in more throbbing electronics and rhythms. The grit and the texture are added around the peripheral, which is often the other way around. The processed, flanged vocals are disturbed and barked. It’s a tense, unresolved quality. If you’re a fan of Sutcliffe Jugend or Genocide Organ, this is for you. It's mechanical warmth, that’s what I really like about it.

Crumer, Future With No Chance [RRR]

Crumer is perhaps best known for his work as guitarist in facedowninshit and American Band, which is a duo with Matt Franco from Air Conditioning. Each of the 300 pressed solo LP’s here are hand made by Crumer himself and released on RRR, the greatest noise label that ever lived and ever will be: RRRon is a civil war veteran of noise and one of the very first to get organized and start creating a 'home' for noise out of the ashes of the 80's tape culture network.... bravo to Ron. His contribution cannot be overstated. Future With No Chance is one of the best noise records to have come out in the past several years. It’s an accomplished mix of brutally lo-fi power electronics with frantic, unprocessed dry vocals to pure electronic compositions with great depth and atmosphere without losing the power. There’s a lot of life here among the destruction. Crumer manages to evoke both physical and mental emotions through sound alone. Highly recommended despite having one of the ugliest covers. Sorry.

New Blockaders, Das Zerstoren, Zum Gebarren [Blossoming Noise]

The New Blockaders are one of the earliest pioneers of pure noise. We wont say music here because there early records were literally the sound of hammer, chains, wheel barrels, garbage, nails, screws, trash cans and motor cycle parts, being dragged aimlessly around the floor of a shed while a tape recorder muttered on in the back ground. That was 1982. Fast-forward through a seemingly endless series of Dadaistic final recordings, final performances, final manifestos and you have the above-mentioned CD. A live recording form their brilliantly mysterious multi manned, multi-channeled
performance at ATP nightmare before Christmas. Assembled by the main blockader himself, Richard Rupenus the ATP performance hosted a line up of epic proportions of the noise continuum of Dave Phillips from Fear of God, Ben Jones of Jazfinger, Mark Dugan of Putrefier (who’s upcoming performance with Thurston Moore, Wolf Eyes and Ramleh at the hook on Oct 13th should not be missed) Damion Romero, and Joke Lanz of Sudden Infant. What makes this release unique in the long and violent history of TNB is the quiet slow beginning and introduction of drones, tones, and atmospheric loops interwoven among the junk and cacophony. The great irony of noise is despite its volume and assault on the listener there is great
subtlety in texture, tone and pattern that can only be heard after the ears adjust and the mind opens. This CD exemplifies the paradox of loud exclamation and sub atomic detail that good noise can hold. With this a psychedelic realm is reached, not previous heard in the tension between colliding grit and tonal electronics. TNB recreate and recycle themselves in this live beast. Rupenus himself saw the sex pistols from a young age. If the Sex Pistols are killing music... TNB is killing the Sex Pistols!

Sissy Spacek, Poling 7" [Static Aktion]

Creak, Grown, Spit, Click. Nothing but a series of false starts with drum stick 1, 2, 3, 4 clicks.... cymbal hits, snare rolls, tom poundings etc. variations on the theme of leaving you hanging. Like constantly ripping off and crinkling up the shrink wrap from a box of new CD’s John Wiese and crew collage together tidbits of what I could only assume is clutter, scraps, leftovers, and doggie bags worth of old Sissy practices and rehearsals. Sounds tasty doesn’t it? But what makes this an interesting listen worth your time is the huge tension that it generates with such and exercise. Witty, with a sense of humor but no happy ending. Recommended for people who ditch their friends. It should also be noted that this is part of a new batch of 7" from a mighty new noise label called Static Aktion from CA. So far they have released 7 seven-inch vinyls only! And many more on the way. In the age of degenerative inbreeding on the world wide inter web and whorish shameful myspacing, while the sweat, blood and tears is sucked out of the underground, while the thrill of the pursuit, hunt and chase is traded in for online banking, online grocery shopping, online real estate.......there is one label willing to throw down some hard earned shekels and suffer for glory of the 7" single. Bravo.

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Posted: October 01, 2007
Freak Scene #14