Jazkammer - Chestnut Thornback Tar [Pica Disk - 2010]Jazkammer has been very prolific these days, planning on putting out an album a month (and how anyone's going to catch up with them, heaven knows...) This particular release features Lasse Marhaug (who of course is all over many noise releases in Europe) and is housed in a very professionally designed digipack, which doesn't give you a clue as to what's on this CD.
This release starts with "Sentimental Journey", a nice Krautrock-style noise-drone of which Jazkammer should do more of. There's several shorter tracks and one other long track of the usual hacked-up noise, with some hilarious titles such as "We Need a Painting, Not a Frame" and "It is the Nobel Prize I want. It's worth $400,000". These tracks sounds like a recordings of a jackhammer except chopped-up in a fast-editing style. There’s what might be gitar textures running though tracks center, though I’m not 100 per cent sure it is gitar due to the way the tracks are chopped-up and messed with.
The album makes me think of the question the band Cock ESP raised at one of their performances that I saw many years ago: Are 'noise' CDs a rip-off? Indeed, is 'noise' really designed to be solely a live experience, and the studio recordings only secondary? And there's something perverse about (again) the professional packaging of this CD, as I'm sure anyone would see this and expect it to be any alternative rock record until they would buy it and discover otherwise.
Indeed Jazkamer seem to be court jesters of the noise scene, and buying this CD lets you in on the joke. But the first track has something I think the band should investigate further.Lawrence J. Patti