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Keränen, "Bats In The Attic"

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On this single track album, Tommi Keränen, who is also one half of the infamous Norwegian noise duo Testicle Hazard, throws down a bit over a half hour of heavily dynamic electronic noise that destroys speakers with the best of them, but with a level of complexity and variation that many other noise artists seem to ignore.


Immediately the track launches into heavy, raw buzzsaw tones and layers of phased sound constructed atop of it.  While it starts out loud and messy, it continues to build even further until the foundation can barely sustain all of the noise that it supports.  There are brilliant balances struck throughout:  piercing, pure sine waves with short blips of unidentifiable sonic trash; monolithic concrete slabs of noise with rapidly undulating and changing passages.

While the static noise tends to be a dominant feature throughout, it never becomes overbearing, with a constantly cycling crowd of hyperkinetic squelches, overdriven crunches and buzzing passages to balance out the pure feedback.  There’s also a healthy selection of bent and mangled pure tones in there to counterbalance the mess.

The biggest change is apparently about 13 minutes in, where the track is pulled apart into some sporadic tones that sound like spastic techno breakdown moments, along with spots of ultra high frequency high pitched frequencies that are reminiscent of the interstitial bits between songs on those extremely early Whitehouse albums.  This is only a brief respite, if you could even call it that, before it goes full bore into rising and falling noise tones for the remainder of the album.

Keränen has succeeded in crafting an album that retains the best qualities of the harsh noise scene (and its many subcategories) without really demonstrating any of the annoyances.  There isn’t a sense that the recording is extremely loud in order to just be “extreme,” but it retains the cojones one would expect from a noise album.  The dynamic selection of sounds and changes in structure keep it varied, and there’s enough variation in here to possibly even pique the interest of non harsh noise fans.  Those who covet their Alchemy Records collections and Macronympha tapes will still be all over this too though, so it has hardcore cred as well.



Last Updated on Sunday, 21 November 2010 22:34  


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