Smell & Quim - Atom Heart Motherfucker
Vis a Vis Audio Arts. Cassette. 10 copies.
At least MP3’s [and their variants] allow you to download lots of music for nothing. No more forking out actually money to someone in return for a physical format that you can form some kind of a relationship with. Begone foul physical format and darken my door no more. Its now possible for you to download Bob Dylan’s entire back catalogue in less time than it takes to get to the bottom of this page [that’s if you live in South Korea not North Yorkshire] and not one penny to the man himself. I don’t know how some of you sleep at night.
I have found another advantage though. Its what happens when you come across something by Vis a Vis Audio Arts, the home of Juntaro Yamanouchi, known to his friends and colleagues as The Gerogerigegege, arch masturbator, releaser of ridiculously limited output, putter of noise inside Ramones LP sleeves to confuse Ramones completists, who has decided to release this and two other Smell & Quim releases, [Cuntybubbles and Quimtessence] in editions of ten. Only one of which has made it to these shores and now resides, quite rightfully, in the hands of Milovan Srdenovic. All is not lost though. Thanks to Lawrence Burton, his excellent Ferric Archeology blog and the blessing of MIlovan Srdenovic there’s a link to a download where you can not only enjoy the bone crushing, Sutcliffe swooning sounds of Smell & Quim you can also blow up and enjoy in all its sick glory the suitably nauseous cover that features a poo smeared coprophagic maniac sticking his head down a toilet [a man who it has to be said looks remarkably like a sans tat Srdenovic but whom, I am assured, is definitely not him].
Such is the quality of Atom Heart Motherfucker that over its eight tracks I find it hard to select a standout but ‘Careful With That Axe Micky’ comes pretty near. A rancorous frame built of things being smashed, its destruction on a par with the best TNB can muster. Such is the clarity of the recordings you can actually feel the debris flying around your head [rumour has it that this track contains actual recordings of said Micky [Gillham, Smell & Quim provocateur] smashing his own bathroom up but I couldn’t comment any further]. ‘Cut Your Fucking Head Off’ sees a demented Srdenovic distorting the title over another blizzard of noise, ‘Westworld’ [Jamie Oliver Cromwell Mix] is at the opposite end of the spectrum and the sound of an attention getting reception bell being repetitively hit with Srdenovic intoning the words ‘fuck it, kill it bury it’, the first line getting looped into all manner of absurdity, all of it delivered in that trademark blunt and flat West Yorkshire brogue. ‘Metal Cunt’ is a fractured noise loop with the word ‘cunt’ coming at you like pies out of a custard pie gun. ‘Bucket Full of Piss’ begins with long suffering Quim resident Simon Morris asking if they’re going to play ‘Bucket Full of Piss’? And yes they do mixing in church bells and maybe the hand dryer in the Grove too. ‘Wrong Hole in One’, ‘Rock in a Sock’ and ‘Careful With That Axe Micky [slight return]’ make up the rest of this shit smeared one on ten with ‘Rock in a Sock’ continuing Smell & Quim’s continued fascination with the Yorkshire Ripper.
After all these years you could forgive Smell & Quim for knocking out something less fulfilling but age has not withered them. Atom Heart Motherfucker contains enough full on harsh noise perversity to help make Smell & Quim as relevant today as they’ve ever been. In a noisy world and after thirty years stood in front of Pete’s pisser that's quite an achievement.