Wednesday, November 21, 2012

R.I.P. Geräuschkrieg

It's said that all good things must come to an end & Geräuschkrieg is no exception. After much thought I've decided to end this blog and move on to other projects.  It's been a rad two and a half years, but I feel it's time for something new. Thanks to the many awesome bands and labels that liked my writing enough to send me free albums to review, that was incredible of you guys. Thanks also to you, the readers.

- Geräuschkrieg Zine

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Bruce Langhorne – The Hired Hand lp

I was really drunk when I bought this, which explains why I'd buy the score to a movie I've never seen, nor even heard of. I guess having not watched the flick, it allows me to approach the music without the bias of the visual connection. Anyhow, the first few listens, the sparse guitar, banjo, and sitar melodies didn't really click with me. I thought they sounded nice and all, but not really worthy of being reissued on vinyl. However, as I've played it more, I've begun to appreciate Langhirne's soundtrack increasingly. The dreamy, minimalistic, americana tunes are accented with just the faintest hint of 60's psychedelic vibe that really makes the works stand out. Not the thing for everyone, in fact, probably not the thing for most. But, for a discerning few, you'll love this.

Scissor Tail Editions

Crank Sturgeon/RedSk/Jason “EVIL” Covelli – split cd-r

This three way split kicks off with 9 tracks of non-music from Crank Sturgeon. Harsh noise, static pulsations, and looped vocalizations (think gargling and vomit sounds) are all patched together into what resembles a 3rd rate rendition of Collapsed Arch. RedSK follows with 9 tracks of rumbling, piercing noise, that has the slightest drone influence. Noise isn't my deal these days, so it didn't do anything for me. Finally there's a rambling spoken word track by Jason “EVIL” Covelli debating weather he needs anger management or therapy. Consisting of constant threats of physical violence, endless profanity, and claims of how he's smarter than everyone around him, it's one of the most annoying, pointless things I've listened to. An all around yawn fest.


Kutomo – Valon Kuolema cd-r

Simply put, Valon Kuolema is pure sonic bliss. The kind of album my words won't do justice, because the music Kutomo composes defies attempts at categorization. Elements of ambient, folk, experimental, and psychedelic are seamlessly blended together to produce a sound that's unique to the artist. It's celestial waves of audio excellence rolling over you. Fucking rad, with out a doubt. It's limited, so better get your copy quick.

Oblitus Memorias – As One, We Will Be With the Stars cd-r

Billed as “melancholic black metal,” in reality, Oblitus Memorias is just another ambient group attempting to create dark soundscapes. The style on As One, We Will Be With the Stars is rather simplistic; one high pitched, warble-y, electronic note at a time. It sounds like the soundtrack you'd hear in some b-grade, Euro horror flick from the 70's. You get the feeling Oblitus Memorias is trying to produce a mysterious, spooky ambiance, but it falls short. Not a terrible release, just kinda meh.

Smell The Stench

Petrified – Same 2012 cd-r

An unusual experimental work here mixing dark ambient synthscapes, medieval-ish percussion loops, and distorted, ritualistic spoken vocals. Wish I spoke French so I knew what the dude was chanting. While there's only three tracks over 10 minutes, Petrified manages to craft a highly foreboding and eerie atmosphere with Same 2012. Hopefully this isn't a one off project and we'll hear some more from the one man act. Release is limited to 40, so you better get on this while you can.

Smell The Stench

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Coyotes In the Room – Uppers & Downers c57

Having some members of Bad Creeps, I'd figured Coyotes In the Room would have a similar sort of sound. NOPE. Uppers & Downers is a collection of 24 short tracks of mellow garage rock with hints of folk and psych. At first I was kind of nonplussed with this, but I think that's 'cause I went in expecting something completely different. The more I've listened to this, the more I'm digging it. Relaxed tunes that won't harsh your buzz. Check it out.

Tent Revivalist Tapes

In Excelsis – Castrum Tigernum cd-r

Niiiice. With over an hour of instrumental, medieval, Western European folk music, you know I'm liking Castrum Tigernum. This isn't any corny, Renaissance Fair guy playing a fife type stuff. There's a mysterious feel to In Excelsisis' music and the drumming gives some of the songs an interesting militaristic edge. Rad stuff.

Smell The Stench

Kheta Hotem – Live at Yläkaupungin yö 2011 c60

Generally I tend to avoid live releases, but I've been itching to hear some more from Kheta Hotem after their awesome Meri vaahtolaine cd-r. The performance starts off very subdued, with a faint, ominous sounding sax and distant tonbak (or some type of Mideastern hand drum). Stringed instruments and faint vocalizations drift in and out, but the vibe remains quiet and hypnotic throughout the A side. On the flip things take a turn toward chaotic improvisation and free jazz; the wailing sax and throat singing are especially prominent. Definitely worth snagging a copy.

Jozik Records

Niao – Prayer lp

Oh man, I'm totally diggin' everything that Prayer has got going on. Niao's got this psychedelic tribal trance-out thing going that's just incredible. Native American sounding chanting, electric organ groves, and eastern percussion all blend seamlessly to make some rad jams. You're into psych-experimental-world music-whatever? Then yea, you gotta snag a copy of this album.    

Vanyar – Reawakened Cultic Practise c26

Playing black metal that manages to be both raw and epic, Vanyar's fucking killing with this demo. There's a slight doom undertone to Reawakened Cultic Practise and it adds a nice complexity to their sound. They also used decent recording techniques, so the tape isn't drenched in hiss and static. Not much more to say about this, aside from go get it.

Red Light Sound

V.A. – Ultimate Trash cd-r

Consisting of seven groups I'm completely unfamiliar with, this comp kicks off with a few tracks of industrial from Kaustikutt. If this was the early 90's, Wax Trax! would be salivating to release a 12' ep of them. Not my scene, but I ended up liking it well enough. Next up up is Dental Work, which has a whole 'μ-Ziq on meth, playing noise' feel, that I'm not really into. Fabrict follows with a few tracks of dark, plodding electronic music. It's ok sounding, but the music doesn't really go anywhere, just kind of aimless beats and sounds. Then there's Adam Sapphire with three tracks of experimental sounds with rambling, spoken accompaniments. Meh. RedSK and Unauthorized Fatal Operation belt out some noise and the cd gets rounded out by the amateurish, playful mathrock of Running To Earth. Not a bad compilation or anything, it's just bands playing styles of music that I'm not particularly keen on.  


Monday, September 17, 2012


Alaskan – The Weak & The Wounded 12" ep

Originally released two years ago on cassette, The Weak & The Wounded is once again seeing the light of day, this time on wax. If you've heard the Split 12" with Co-Pilot you'll be able to tell right away this is an earlier release. The sludgy ambiance on that ep is noticeably absent here, with Alaskan playing a far more generic style of post-metal. The vocals also sound off, like they would be more suited for a hardcore band. I suspect if I had heard this before their more recent work, I'd be more favorable toward it. The Weak & The Wounded isn't a bad album, by any means, just that I prefer the sound the band has evolved into.

The Treaty Oak Collective

Kösmonaut – Emanations c60

I can't believe I'm only now discovering Kösmonaut. A one-man, electronic krautrock unit from my home state of Texas, I should have been all over this from day one. Better late than never. Anyhow, saying that Kösmonaut is “krautrock” is a little bit of an oversimplification. There's a lot of stuff going on in Emanations, solid undertones of drone, psych, and industrial, so you can't pigeon-hole the sound. There are even tracks like "Triad," which has a mutant italo disco, 80's club vibe to it. Emanations is an all around rad album, that pushes the boundaries of what you think of as kosmische musik.

Jozik Records

Mark Bradley – Radiant c21

Combining minimalistic bass, chiptune percussion, and electronic sounds, I'm digging what Mark Bradley's served up on this little tape. Starting off stark and simplistic, Radiant's sound grows and evolves with each track, becoming a new beast entirely by the end. If you're into unusual electronic compositions as much as I am, you're gonna want to snag a copy of this while you still can.

A Beard of Snails Records

Qwertzuiop/i AM esper – Split cd-r

Rad album right here that's both a split and a collaboration. Qewertzuiop kicks things off with a track of interesting neo-classical stuff, followed by a track of simmering, ethereal ambient. As a transition between the artists, the two worked together on a song, creating a stunning composition that blends the best of both bands. Seriously, it's pretty damn amazing. i AM esper rounds the cd out with two pieces of stellar, hypnotic guitar drone. Highly recommended.  

Sam Pink – i never liked my dad c58

Aside from a few Henry Rollins and Jello Biafra tapes I owned in middle school, I've never really listened to spoken word stuff. And, while I might not be a connoisseur of the genre, I can tell you what I do like and what I don't like. This falls into the latter category. As if the rambling, pointless, slice-of-life material wasn't enough, Sam Pink's monotonous tone and choppy speaking pace make i never liked my dad an incredibly frustrating listen. Sorry, no thanks.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Bad Creeps – Make Us Proud c26

Abrasive and disjointed, Make Us Proud reminds me a lot of the noise rock AmpRep was pumping out some 20 years ago. But, you can't pigeonhole Bad Creeps' sound down to just that. There's a little bit of a powerviloence undertone and a totally snarky feel to it all. It's fucking rad. My only complaint is that mix seems a little muted, especially on the vocals. I'd have liked to hear those shrieks and barks louder. It's not that big a deal. What is a big deal is that this is limited to 50 copies, so you better keep your fingers crossed there is one or two still left for you.

Tent Revivalist Tapes

Mt. Tjhris – Amethyst Cave c44

Remember back in high school when one of your pals dropped blotters for the first time and was all “Dude...The colors, I can hear them!” Well, now you too can finally hear that chromesthesiatic trip, thanks to Mt. Tjhris and this tape. It's a prismatic spray in the audio spectrum, the sound of light refracting through a million crystals. I won't lie, Amethyst Cave's whole new age, purple crystal healing sounds vibe is way too Hearts of Space for me, but the actual music is solid. Bubbly, synth ambiance, with some trance-y drone tossed in for good measure. Recommended, especially for all you clairvoyants who want a soundtrack to your crystal gazing.

null – Miasma cd-r

All to frequently “post-black metal” is code for hipster dicks playing at some bullshit, ironic, art school, quasi-black metal sound. Thankfully, this is not the case with null. Consisting of 4 massive tracks blending vaguely melodic black metal and guitar fueled dronescapes, Miasma is totally overwhelming. I can see a lot of black metal purists being turned off by this, but fuck them, it's their loss. Required listening for anyone who enjoys progressive and creative black metal type stuff. The only unfortunate aspect about Miasma is that it marks the end of null. Oh well, better to go out with a bang, right?  

Slaw – Slaw c45 x2

Make sure the Pabst is ice cold and that sweet wizard-shaped bong is packed, 'cause it's time to pop this monster into the tape deck. Totally pummeling, crushing sludge spaced out over two 45 minute cassettes, how the fuck could you not love Slaw? The production is surprising clean for music that sounds so grimy, but it works. These dudes have a kind of minimalistic sound going; no psychedelic guitar solos or southern rock action, it's just a pulverizing wave of sludge. Why the fuck are you still reading my ramblings and not out snagging a copy?  

V.A. – Duets c100

Ok, so this is a totally rad idea. Put together a huge comp that consists entirely of two-man bands. Duets is 16 bands and over an hour and a half of tunes. Mostly synth and electronic action from the groups, but there's some other styles thrown in as well. All fairly solid tracks, standouts for me were the rumbler from Brother Raven, the meditative guitar drones from Century Planet, and a plodding rock instrumental from Big Sky. And that's just the A side; on the flip there solid tracks from Blood on Tape, Sundrips, & Grasshopper. Diggin it.  

Monday, August 6, 2012


156 – Frontyard/Backyard c42

I'm not quite sure if the 156 fits the definition of musique concrète, so I'll use the more generic 'sound collage'. It's not really a genre I'm particularly interested in and the truth is I snagged this tape not knowing what I'd find on it. I was down in Fort Lauderdale digging though the local section of an indie record store when I stumbled upon Frontyard/Backyard. I didn't know anything about the project or the label, but the man behind 156, Adel Souto, is a name I recognize. For those unaware, Mr. Souto used to publish the Feast of Fear and Hate zine (remember when people did paper zines?), which I read voraciously back in high school. Anyhow, this is a collection of field recordings and musical-ish sounds created with tools, metal scraps, and whatever else, that have been interwoven. As I said before, this type of stuff doesn't really pique my interest, but I did find the album to be strangely hypnotic. Listening to it in a noisy, metropolitan area, Frontyard/Backyard didn't blend in, but rather stood out as a different, but similar, set of sound. I found myself trancing out in a strange place in between what was the white noise of the city and the music from 156. Does that make any sense? Anyhow, if you're into unusual sound collages and experimental field recordings, check this out.

Dragon Turtle and Eric de Jesus – The Second Summer of Love/The Leaves on the Trees were Green with Youth 7"

I feel like this is one of those 'good idea in theory' type of things that doesn't manage to pan out in reality. You've got a spoken word dude reading over a band's music; sounds interesting. The main problem is that the vocal levels are botched and Eric de Jesus sounds staticy and muted, especially on The Leaves... side. On top of that, de Jesus' prose doesn't particularly appeal to me; it's not bad or anything, just not my deal. I did find myself enjoying Dragon Turtle's kinda shoegaze-y, mellow math-rock; but that wasn't enough to save this ep. I wanted to like this, but it left me rather underwhelmed.

Lunar Miasma – Managing The Dream c28

If you've been jonesing for some synch action, Lunar Miasma has got what you need. This rad little tape kicks off with a massive track of shimmering electronics. All crystal visions and tigers floating in space, you know? The next track takes it down a notch, with this mysterious, low key vibe going. On the flip there's another impressive piece of sci-fi sounding weirdness and finally a calm journey delving deep into the id. Managing The Dream is an astral burner, a soundtrack for the unconscious mind.

 Rose Cross – Rose Cross 7"

I'm not big into either punk or garage rock, but I'm finding myself digging this ep. Rose Cross plays short songs of fuzzy punk rock about ghosts, the apocalypse, and relationships. The really stand out aspect about Rose Cross is the shout/sung female vocals, which gives the band a particularly unique sound. I'm diggin' it, go snag a copy.  

Saturday, July 14, 2012


Force Fed Life – Reminiscent Nostalgia cd-r

Billed as “depressive black metal,” a more accurate description of Force Fed Life would be “repetitive guitar riffs and incoherent mumbling”. The first half of the Reminiscent Nostalgia's four tracks consist of an acoustic guitar and a dude whispering about pain or something, while the final half is an electric guitar and laughable black metal style vocals. To top it all off, the last track is an agonizing 14 minutes long. No thanks.

Smell the Stench

Fossils From the Sun – Blood '08 c38

Blood '08 begins with a sidelong jam of barley audible rhythmic pulsations, glitchy vocalizations, and, towards the end, some metallic sine waves. Not a promising start for the album. On the flip things are slightly more interesting, but really the three tracks there are just variations of what you heard before. It feels like Fossils From the Sun has the potential, but it just never manifests. All and all? Meh.   

i AM esper – Sun & Moon: Between Dimensions cd-r

Damn, this is a massive slab of drone right here. Broken up between “day music” and “night music”, the sun portion is strummed guitar riffs that have been looped and layered creating tracks that slowly unfold, while the moon half utilizes low note reverberations for melancholy pieces. With each song clocking in at around 10 minutes, by the time Sun & Moon: Between Dimensions concludes one can't help but feel overwhelmed and engulfed in an ocean of sound. While the cd-r version has sold out, you can buy a digital copy from i AM esper's bandcamp or wait for one of the two cassette reissues. Either way, just make sure you get you hands on a copy of this.    

Northern Forest/Pandemonium – Là où la Nature Reflète Sa Majesté cd-r

This split gets kicked off with four tracks from Northern Forest of mixed synth action and nature recordings, with a bit of black metal for good measure. These are decent enough, but I've heard better stuff from Northern Forest. The album is rounded out by an impressive track of drone from France's Pandemonium. Consisting of looped ritualistic chanting, electronic rumblings, and an unknown stringed instrument, it's completely mesmerizing. Worth checking out if drone and dark ambient is your game.

Pan – Pan c60

Pan's a tough nut to crack. The songs here range from chaotic electronic soundscapes to folksy, pop psychedelics and a fair share of things in between. I find myself more drawn toward the psych tracks than the sound collage & electronic antics, but to each their own. Pretty impressive that such a diverse array of music was created with just a synthesizer, electric guitar, and vocals. For whatever reason, I feel a little out of my element with this one. I'm liking Pan, but it's not the thing for everybody. If you dig odd birds, Pan will be right up your alley.