Various Artists - Fun From None-DVD [Load Records - 2006]Fun From None offers up several visual snapshots from both 2004 & 2005 No Fun noise festivals in New York. Featuring live work-outs from a total of twenty acts/ artist over the two DVD set including the likes of Wolf Eyes, Jazkamer, Carlos Giffoni, Hair police and Double leopards to name a few.
Both disks are filmed and edited by designer and filmmaker Chris Habib. Disk one natural takes in the more recent festival in 2005, and I feel is the weaker of the two disks. Firstly the live selections are shorter than of those on disk two, whether by design or due to time constraints is unclear . Secoundly instead of just filming the concert, Habib often adds on all manner of visuals tricks to the footage to varying effect going from rewarding to rather annoying. The dvd opens with a track by To live and shave in LA with it’s stop-monition like edited, which is effective enough, though does become a little tiring towards the end. On Giffoni & Nyoukis track he just puts uses a too grainy black and white effect on the footage, doing little else with it. Though there are some very enjoyable moments on disk one like the Nautical Almanc track which is left untreated in all it’s bizarreness -as the torn and dirty clothed vagrant looking couple churn out all manner of strange guttural mouth noise, with support from disturbing low grade electronics, the track feels like a pray to some junkyard god. Anoter is the Double Leopards track which follows & is also left untreated except for a slightly grainy black and white filter on the footage. Habib films close ups of them performing their strange sound ritual- that includes old records decks, several people crawling around with microphones over peddles and percussive matter. Habib’s filming here really adds to the eerier almost otherworldly strangeness of it all.
Disk two starts of with a frankly frightening performance from one man noise project Prurient. From the start of the piece with his striped to the waist frame thats twitching with uncontrollable anger as he hunchs over his equipment, it's clear he’s really feeling his noise here. Later he jumps up in a rage shouting with all his very power in to the mic, you really think he’s going to ripping someone from the audience and beat them to death. Other highlights include: the guitar, two drum kit and electronics attack of Death unit. The always enjoyable Jazkamer who make a jerky track out of pig like grunts, smashing glass and electrocution sounds. Really the whole of disk two at it's near on two hour running time has no real low points.
Sadly the only extra on both disks are mp’s of all the performances; it would have been nice to have an interview with Mr Giffoni about his organisation of the events or a short documentary about the festival growth. Never the less this is an extremely worthwild visual/ audio document showing one of the important and still thankful un -corporate festival in existence today. Here’s hoping they’ll do one covering 2006 to 2007.Roger Batty