by left USER (3 Reviews)
August 3rd, 2005 | 2 replies

Release Date: 1999 | Tracklist

In order to talk about Maldoror, we should first see some basics about the duo forming the noise band. Mike Patton indeed is my favorite artist ever, and he has been discussed a lot here as i could easily see, but i believe that nobody talked about Merzbow. And basically Maldoror is Merzbow`s work with Patton, not viceversa. His real name is Masami Akita, he was born in 1956 and he is to noise what the Rolling Stones are to rock. And i`m not exagerating one bit. At first a guitarist in a post punk band, Akita begain his weird experiments in the late 70's and eventually grew tired ot rock. Thus, around our time, his discography has grown absolutley huge, somewhere at about 200 cd's, some of his well known releases being Merzbox (a huge box set consisting of 50 cd's!) and Noisembryo.

Also some people may be wondering what is with this noise thing that i cathergorised the album with. The history of noise, goes a long way back in past, being similar to the history of somewhat related genres such as PE (Power Electronics, or Industrial). Usually the "noise" termn stands for Harsh Noise and it stands out as an independent musical style. There is the general tendency to call "noise" all the weird stuff you hear, huge mistake that leads to a lot of confusion.

Noise is electronic music (usually really violent) without rhythm. Sometimes you even use your voice for that, most of the times distorted (see Dissecting Table) Usually noise artists do not use conventional instruments, but the exeption is made by Namanax and Merzbow who incorporated in their songs guitar sounds, and even some jazz elements. Noise uses jost one spectrum of noise itselt and it is absolutley necesarrily composed of syntethic and abstract sounds (this means we cannot have sounds we can actually indentify, like a car enginne for example), thus it cannot be reproduced acoustical.

This musical style is represented by solo artists and not by bands, because it doesnt need a lot of instrumentation. Some important noise artists would be : Merzbow, Masonna, Macronympha, Dissecting Table, Mike Patton (recently that is), etc. Some call the Japonese noise "Japanoise". Also, one of the most important things to remember about noise is that the sounds is viewed from a complete abstract point of view, and the generating themes seem psychedelic, thing we can easily tell looking at the titles used for the songs ex : "Tauromachine", "neuro-electric butterfly", "inner mind mystique".

Merzbow plays the double game of ambience : omnipresent sound, becoming noise; noise becoming background. Merzbow music consists of the debris of music, of sound: pulses, feedback, hisses, whirs, blasts, distortions, pure tones, shrieks, machine noise, all played extremely loud. This is pure noise, we have no space for recognisably musical sounds. Also another secret of Merzbow, is that noise becomes ambient and background becomes noise, not when you sit and try to figure out when that is about to happen. That is actually gonna happen just when you will stop trying to figure that out (hope that made sense)

The album "She" released on Ipecac (Mike Patton's label) does pretty much apply to what i said above. It is without any doubt a noise record, made by 2 of the greatest experimentalists alive. There are some extreme noise songs on it, for instance Snuff, which makes me think about a chainsaw amplified on maximum. Bubble Bath And A Valium is another interesting audition, even though it has some resemblences with Man Alone In Steambath (on Adult Themes For Voice, Patton's first solo album). Butterfly Kiss is 100% cartoon theme music, somewhat similar to what Fantômas have done in the past.

Quite possibly the best track on the CD is Twitch Of The Death Nerve. Now that is really awesome noise, that makes me think about an abandoned hospital, and a pacient sitting on the table, all strapped there. Then the crazy doctor appears, holding some screwed up tools in his hands, and starts sticking them in the poor pacient, who screams as loud as he can. And the whole songs sounds like this, especially the ending, where Patton is screaming his lungs out with Akita doing some amplified distortions in the background.

She is an interesting album, not very original, hence most on the songs on the record could easily fit into Adult Themes For Voice, or anyother album of Merzbow. However fans of Patton and Akita should be really pleased with this release (and i know i am :) )

ps - please post some comments, as this is my first review here, and i plan to do more (mostly concerning experimental artists)

user ratings (7)

Comments:Add a Comment 
August 3rd 2005


Awesome dude, I don't think I've seen anyone more enthusiastic about noise as you. Although you might need to lengthen your description of the songs and the overall impact of the album itself, rather than the history of the artists/genre. But it's a good first review. I'm kinda hit or miss with noise albums and bands, but I'll look into this soon.

August 4th 2005


thanx dude, i also started a thread on noise here if you`re interested ...

the reason why i decided to do a long review mainly concerning the primary things about noise is that hence the genre is noise, it`s really difficult to comment upon the songs when all you get is squeeks, hisses, distorstions and all of that. However, i`ll do a review on Adult Themes For Voice pretty soon, and i`ll try to enter more details when talking about the songs

You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile


Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Site Copyright 2005-2017
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy