Persistence In Mourning/Koufar - Split [Phage Tapes - 2009]This is quite an usually, unexpected but ultimately highly enjoyble split. On the first side of this c44 tape we have Oklahoma based Persistence In Mourning who boil up a mixture of: tribal led noise electronics, Doomed wondering psychedelic rock scapes & all manner of interesting stuff. Then on the flip side we have Koufar who make Middle Eastern atmospheric tinged Power electronics.
So side one is taken up by the Persistence In Mourning track entitled ‘The Feral Children’. It all starts out with revolving, grinding & whistling noise pitchers that are pretty soon joined by slow tribal beats along with screaming dada electronics & the odd hint of quite melodic & charming violin playing. Then around the six minute mark it surprisingly suddenly drops into slow wondering, bass wavered & dreamy doom lined psychedelic rock drifts that are overfed by Mike Patton like croaking through a distorted Dictaphone vocals & long feed back trails. The rest of the track wonders & suddenly turns between dada/ weirdo tinged noise, drifting, muffled & doom flicked psychedelic rock scapes,and bizzaro or shrieking sound scaping. You really feel like you’ve been on one hell of a strange trip by the end of the side.
Onto side two & we have two tracks by Koufar. First up is the track ‘Breed’ which starts out with some rapid Arabic male talking which is latter joined by a female interviewing voice also specking in Arabic; these two voices are swamped in threatening manner by building then retracting noise swarms. With-in a few minutes it kicks in with a really nasty & murderous series of power electronic stabs, jitters & grinds of noise that are all topped off with really nice vein bulging vocals. Lastly we have the track ‘Patriot’ which starts out with sad & beautiful mournful eastern female vocalising samples that are under-cut by distant gunfire or chopping tones & sudden feedback risers. As the track goes on the feedback waves & noise currents build & start to cover the samples, then the nice angered & vein bulging PE vocals seer & attack your senses over the top of the mix of noise matter. The tracks backing effectively switchers between the samples haunted female vocals & the more searing noise attacks as the brutal vocals slice in & outof the track like a rusty knife. I really like this tracks balance between haunted emotional atmospherics & all out head cracking anger.
So in finishing off this is a very rewarding split which offers up two very different projects who each bring to the table a very enjoyable & creative side a piece. This really is what a great split should all be about; bringing the listener two artists they’ve never heard before & making you want to track down more materiel from one or both artists. And it’s certainly worked for me, as I’m now very eager to hear more from both Persistence In Mourning & Koufar.Roger Batty