Sunday, February 20, 2011

Night Science IV CD

V/A CD that comes with Night Science IV magazine.
500 copies.

Magazine reviewed elsewhere - here’s the CD review.


Hum of the Druid
Golden Serenades
Kazamuto Endo
Dieter Müh
The Haters

I have a theory that a CD stuck to the front of a music magazine will either have one great track or be a huge pile of one listen only shite. And as the amount of magazines with CD’s stuck to their covers grows larger by the month it seems the less interesting the music contained within them [or the more useless the software if you’ve just bought PC Almost The Same As Last Month monthly]. When the British weekly music press was in its prime, [that would be when guitar based music was actually worth bothering with] an issue that came with a free single or cassette usually carried something worth hearing. The NME’s C86 became a landmark release in its own right, heralding the death of post punk and the birth of jangly angular guitar angst. Now that the music weeklies have been replaced by the nostalgia music monthlies it feels almost obligatory to stick on a loudly praised but poorly executed cover mount. A friend lent me about half a dozen of these things which at first sight looked immensely appealing but on closer inspection revealed nothing more than a series of shoddy live tracks and various nobodies doing cover versions of their wet dreams b-sides. The Wire joined in the fun too, I sat and listened to the first 15 of their Wire Tapper series before retaining a handful of tracks and eBaying the lot. Social Networking and the availability of peer to peer software have further diminished the impact cover mounts have but thats never going to stop the music monthlies using them as customer bait.

Whether the disc accompanying Night Science IV becomes a touchstone for future listeners remains to be seen but even if it doesn't its still a great stand alone release. For those already familiar with Industrial, Noise, PE and experimental genres you’ll no doubt be familiar with most of the acts here but if you’re not its great gateway.
Dieter Müh’s Burning Bodies is a fire crackling pean given added eeriness with the introduction of two female voices, one moaning, the other a prim 50’s BBC voice intoning the words ‘you are burning people’. Chilling stuff indeed. Raionbashi’s sub four minute contribution contains all manner of organic sounds, ranging from an executioners swinging axe to slurped water to a bell that rings so clear that it seems to resonate into infinity. The Haters track ‘Spinning Spade is nine minutes of radio static, hum and swirling noises which if I’m correct was made using an antique turntable and a toy spade. Haltham provide the PE element with a well executed stretch of grinding despair whilst Endo and Golden Serenades both chip in with quality noise tracks, the former encased in a treated Japanese junk noise arena whilst the latter ends up in a more freeform, high-end European firmament. Which leaves Hum of the Druid. Teetering between brilliance and mundanity would imply that HOTD are still a sound in search of maturity. The last thing I reviewed by Hum was a bold array of electro-acoustic sounds that bore comparison with TNB and Mark Durgan. It also had some crap on it. The same thing happens here - given two tracks to elaborate with Hum confound and delight. The first track contains the exquisite sounds of steel pins being rolled down distant concrete steps coupled to a ghostly drone whilst the second is a piece of ordinary noise rumble, OK in itself but in the light of whats gone before hardly thrilling. I’m still holding out for Hum of the Druid to come up with something really special though.

I’m sure all these tracks are exclusives too.


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