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 Review archive:  # 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

Various Artists - Wall of Death [Somnolent Shelter Records - 2011]

“Wall of Death” is a rewarding, mostly consist and damn brutal six track compilation of Harsh Noise wall matter put together by polish label Somnolent Shelter Records.

First off it's worth giving the packaging of this pro pressed cdr a mention, as it one of the more pro looking items to come out of the HNW scene. The disc comes in a clear cd jewel case which features pro-printed black ‘n’ white inlays. On the front cover we have a male figure half in darkness wearing a Vomir t-shirt, and on the inside there’s a picture of  what looks like a close up picture of grey dead flesh, and on the cdr it’s self and under it is a grim close up  picture of a mass of blacked sets of teeth.

Track wise the compilation is a mix of known & not so known HNW projects. On the known side we have a track from Vomir entitled “Enregistrement” which is one of the longest track at just over the 12 minute mark, and it offers up a prime ‘n’ crusty slice of locked juddering ‘n’ throbbing walled noise. We have a track from I Spit On Your Grave which is one of the lessen known projects of J. Cadle( Foul, ...Massacre & White Torture), and the  near on ten minute track is entitled “Slash”- the first half the tracks all about tight jittering ‘n’ juddering static knife like cuts in a dense walled mass, then mid-way it smashers into more endless roaring ’n’ roasting texturing that’s underfed by this small yet great skipping tonality.   We have a track from [Untitled] which of course is one of the more recent projects of Richard Ramirez & Sean Matzus, and the untitled  just over ten minute track on offer here starts off with haunting & grim tube train samples before dropping into the moody ‘wall’- which sits somewhere between industrial ambience & bleak chopping textured walled noise, with the tube train elements making effective & bleak bedfellows for the moving in & out sways of textured chopping noise.

On the lessen known side( in HNW field) we have a track from dark ambient meets subdued blacked metal and industrial texturing project T.O.M.B who open up the compilation with a just under two & half minute track entitled “Between Host” which is a mixture of what sounds like churning ‘n’ muffled street cleaning machine field recordings & shredding industrial ambience- I guess at a stretch you could call this track ‘wall’ like. We have a track  entitled “Sleep Machine” from US noise project Panther Modern which comes in at just shy of the eight minute mark, and this offers up a grim layer shifting ‘wall’ of chopping, grinding & juddering  grey static texturing. And we have a track from a project called Lexoe who are seemingly making their debut on this release, and their 4.08 tracks entitled “Finish Your Supper”. This track is all about alternating between grey industrial ambient machine drone, pummelling noise rises, haunting fed back sustains & sudden roasting ‘walls’ of noise.

So all told this is a worthwhile compilation that has been sequenced very effectively for a grim & often punishing ride. Sure not everything on here can be classified as pure HNW, but it all works well together & 85 to 90 % of what is  here is HNW.  So it’s a pity this was ltd to around a 100 copies, and is now all sold out as this would work as a great introduction to HNW to newbie’s, and it’s a great even comp for seasoned  wall-heads too-lets hope this gets re-pressing it clearly deservers.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Roger Batty
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