Various Artists - Brainkiller(boxset) [Toxic Industries - 2010]The ‘Brainkiller’ boxset brings together four c100 tapes worth of often thick & unchanging Harsh Noise wall matter, with the four acts involved offer up two fifty minute ‘walls’ a piece. The acts taking part here are Sarajevo based Smrznik, Croatian based Placenta Lyposuction, Italian based Fukte and last, but hardly least we have French based Vomir.
The white box that the four tapes come in is made to look like a first aid kit with white cross on green background sticker in the middle of the front of the box & on the back there’s a clever and rather amusing info sheet that’s written like & made to look like a Patient Information Leaflet that you get inside any prescribed medicine. Each tape is spray painted white except for cross in the middle of the tape which shows each tapes different original colour. And to top off the first aid & medical theme you have two large and mean looking tablets stuck into the front middle hole of the six place tape box. All told a very nicely thought-out and distintive looking bit of packaging.
So onto the tapes & the medication theme continues with each of eight tracks here been named after a brand or type of medication. Up first on a blue tape we have Smrznik’s two tracks and on the first side we have a track entitled ‘Paroxetina’, which is named after antidepressant medication used in the treatment of major depression, obsessive compulsiveness, panic, social anxiety, and generalised anxiety. This track is built around a wonderful brooding, sinister, bass throbbing & purring fridge like tone that’s met by a dry static jitter. The track has almost a physical weight about it as it pressers down on you with all it’s brooding yet very controlled sonic presence. Not much textural or structural changers over the tracks fifty minute runtime, execpt the purring electro fringe tone & the dry static jitter seem to shift from the front to the back of the tracks sonic view. There also seems to be a more vibrating & juddering edge to the proceedings as the track gets towards it’s last ten minutes of playing time. The 'wall' keeps you oddly hooked & sucked in through out it’s length, as you really start to become one with it’s sinister & controlled brooding presence.
Over to the second side and we have a track entitled ‘Duloxetina’ which is named after a drug that is for the treatment of episodes of increased depression and diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain in adults. This track starts off with low down & tense fog of static before a higher bass like & stuck cable feedback buzz ‘n’ prod comes in over the top of the static haze. Then for the rest of the track the cable feedback prod remains fairly constant & focused on the same pattern, while the static tone mainly loops & ever so often slight moves pitch under it. Again there are no great textural movement along the tracks fifty minute path other than it seems to become a bit more nasty & incrusted with this grainy punk feedback haze as it goes on. It’s another good & trance inducing ‘wall’, though I think I prefer the first sides 'wall' out of the two Smrznik sides here.
Onto the next tape which is lilac in colour and features two sides from Croatian based Placenta Lyposuction. The first side is taken up by a track named ‘Thioxanthene’ which is named after a drug that treats treatment of schizophrenia and other psychoses. This track is built around two blunt & ragged juddering tones that move over each other in quite a rewarding muffled static manner; through ever so often the static becomes a bit more caustic & cutting in its feel. This track keeps once more fairly locked and unmoving in it’s judder patterns though it does seem to become more thicker, slower, muffled & nasty sounding in it’s tone as it progresses which nicely sucks you in & swamps you in it’s seared sound fog.
Over to the second side of tape two and we have a track entitled 'Zuclopenthixol' which named after a anti-psychotic drug and this sides ‘wall’ is built around this wonderful rich, thick and crackling static tone which literal seems to boil out into your listening space and untimely your head- it's much like a washing machine that bubbling out endless mounds of soapy suds that are covering every surface. Placenta Lyposuction just keeps looping out this very tight & highly rewarding thick crackle that is just so moorish & seemingly infinite. This sides ‘wall’ keeps it’s constant crackle storm going through-out, though the pitch of the crackle is moved up and down slightly over the tracks fifty minutes runtime. All told this tracks very rewarding in it's brutal journey into sustained static crackle and it's one of my favourite moments on this set.
Onto tape three and this ones coloured green with two sides from Italian based Fukte. On the first side we have a track entitled ‘Risperidone’ which named after an atypical anti-psychotic drug that’s used in the treatment of schizophrenia (including adolescent schizophrenia), schizoaffective disorder, and irritability in children with autism. This ‘wall’ starts out with a main revolving & roasting noise tone which brings to mind been on a vast Rotisserie and being slowly cooked as your turned round and round. Coming off the main furnace like roar are lots of smaller jittering and jumping static tones which dance & crackle over the central tone. As the track progresses the main roasting tone seems to get longer in it’s patterns and also a bit more ragged around the edges too as the static jumps seem get more stabbing & rapid. A very nasty track that just seems to get more and more draining as it goes on.
Flipping over the other side of the tape & we’re onto the second Fukte track which is called ‘Delorazepam’ and is named after a medication used in Italy as a short term antidepressant, for dental phobia & the treatment of alcohol abuse withdrawal. This track comes in all guns blazing literal knocking you over with huge galloping & 'steel barrel rolling down a mountain' tone. This tone is soon joined by a rapid boiling pulse which brings to mind for some reason potatoes on a very fast boil. Through-out the track theses two elements are thrown into each other, twisted together, alternated & moved through each other at few different but always rapid & flaying speeds- yet the track still keeps it's energy power & momentum through-out. I really like the urgency and constant rolling down and down feeling of this track & when the track finally ends you almost feel a bit dizzy & uncertain on your feet.
And so we’re onto the last tape & it’s red one & it features two sides from the respected & infamous Vomir. On side one we have a track entitled ‘Clonazepam’ which is named after a medication that used as a Epilepsy, Anxiety disorders, Panic disorder & Initial treatment of mania or acute psychosis. This ‘wall’ kicks in fast, rushing & crudely with text book example of Vomir's unforgiving & nasty take on wall making. The ‘walls’ built from a vicious & seared rushing liquid tone, and another more droning and occasional deep static licked rushing tone; these two ride roughly over each other in an unchanging, cruel & highly nasty manner for the tracks fifty minute length. I rather like the way sometimes the two tones move in & out of each other which really gives the feeling like the sonic wall is slightly shifting & over rushing it self.
Flipping over to the second side & we have the second track from Vomir in the form of ‘Zolpidem’ which is named after a medication that is used for short-term treatment of insomnia, as well as some brain disorders. This track is built around two main & thick tones; firstly we have the deep rolling and slightly jagged electronic drone, then secondly we have this great squeaking & rabid wheel like whirling tone which sounds like an unoiled caster or a little slightly rusty metal wheel that’s been pull over a roughly carpeted surface. Vomir runs these two tones together in a most rewarding & caustically hypnotic manner. The focus of the wall is kept unchanging & very full through-out, but it’s that squeaking wheel tone that really sells the track & makes it so captivating yet nervous system flaying. You certainly couldn’t use this nasty slice of wall making for a cure against insomnia. So a great end to a great collection with Vomir offering up a very moorish yet grating track.
‘Brainkiller’ is a nicely thought-out & presented HNW collection showing off some of Europe’s most devastating & caustic extreme noise attacks. Clearly this is not for those with only a passing interesting in the HNW genre, but this is for the season long term ‘wall’ addict who like their ‘walls’ mainly unforgiving, unchanging & untimely very nasty. As you’d imagine with this type of thing it’s highly limited with only 26 copies in all made…so if you’re a true ‘wall’ addict you better act quick. Drop into Toxic Industries MySpace here to find out how & hear samples