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Daniel Menche, "Jugularis"

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Through the album’s vein-like title and the glorious red tissue of this disc’s gatefold, Menche is being quite insistent about the subject matter of Jugularis; the human heart and its physical functions. Pumping through a myriad of veins and arteries, this album is the sound of blood propelled around the body by the steady drive of this vital organ. Except instead of the familiar and secure pulse of its beat, we are invited to hear the mini-rhythms of blood vessels driving and populating these three untitled behemoth sized tracks.


Sounds travel purposefully past the listener on their way to some urgent destination, dipping in and out of coherence before rushing and splitting like waves. Menche avoids the Puréed internal and organic squelch and splatter route, instead moulding sounds into a subtler blending of power electronics (not an oxymoron for Menche) and pulses. An exemplar of rhythm manipulation and processing, Menche’s exploration of sound here consciously avoids the slip into full-throttle abuse. “Jugularis Three” is the heaviest piece with ball bearing raindrops creating noisy little blood vessel stuck grooves. The insect chatter pitter-patter on this, the album’s finale, is the most focused, pummelling a path into the blood-sodden ground. As focused as Jugularis is on its relentless pounding, it manages to also move in a less obviously percussive way.

“Jugularis Two” slurs large sections of drum work into a drenched screed of sound; these passages more closely resemble the passing of treacly covered comets rather than any digital process. While the beats are the main focus of the album, and take up a good 90% of the sounds, there is a restrained use of tones beneath some of the throbbing. From heavier descending moods to more slight overlapping drone, these ingredients also create changing patterns. At the more burdened end they can buzz like swarms of shaking rivets, while at the other end they slow into accordion like waves.

The off-kilter primitive beats of the album are forever settling and shifting in their patterns, overlapping like live players moving into and out of the foreground through Menche’s filtered digital vision. These tiny structured blueprints move through channels inside a larger breathing space, bringing a slight echoic feel to these sections. While the album is undoubtedly about flesh it never moves from its detached examination of sounds into lasciviousness. With Jugularis Menche has become almost impassive in his dealings with the human heart, his touch as black as any noise artist.



Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 February 2011 22:41  


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