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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

Nightmare Castle - Death To Pigs [ Sweet Solitude - 2012]

“Death To Pigs” is the second release in Sweet Solitude’s  'Shades Of Grey' series- each title in this series finds a HNW artist theme their release around a famous murder case or murders.  This release finds Nightmare Castle- the normally horror & occult themed Louisiana based HNW project tattling the Tate/ LaBinca murders that were carried out by the Mason Family.

The Tate/ LaBinca murders are probably the most shocking & remembered murders of late 1960’s. In the summer of 1969, up & coming director Roman Polanski and  his actress wife Sharon Tate  rented a house on Cielo Drive, Los Angeles. Sharon was 8 months pregnant, and Roman was working in London, but returning to LA in a week or so for the birth of their baby.

On the night of August 8th, 1969 cult leader & career criminal Charles Manson sent  three members of his infamous “Family” cult to the house on  Cielo Drive. Three victims were shot and/or stabbed multiple times on the grounds of the houses estate. These were: coffee heiress & socialite Abigail Folger, Delivery boy & Salesman Steven Parent and  polish actor/ Writer Voiytek Frykowski.
Sharon Tate and Hair stylist/ socialite Jay Sebring were murdered inside the house. Sharon died from numerous stab wounds, five of which were by themselves fatal; Jay died of blood loss. Both had their necks loosely attached by a single rope over a rafter.

The next homicides, called the "LaBianca murders," occurred two days later in the home of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca. They were found stabbed to death with dozens of wounds.

The murders perpetrated by the members of the "Family" were inspired in part by Manson's prediction of Helter Skelter, an apocalyptic war he believed would arise from tension over racial relations between blacks and whites. This "chimerical vision" -- as it was termed by the court that heard Manson's appeal from his conviction for the Tate/LaBianca killings-- involved reference to music of The Beatles (particularly songs from the album The Beatles White Album) and to the New Testament's Book of Revelation

This release features two tracks- “Tate” which comes in at just over the twenty three minute mark & “LaBianca” which comes in at just under the twenty two & a half mintue mark. Each track features intro & outro collages of samples that take in news footage of the cases, Manson’s rants, Beatles  music & other case related sonic matter- these mesh of samples nicely set the mood of the tracks.  

After it’s minute or so of sample collage “Tate” kicks in with a dense, brutal & nasty ‘wall’ of noise that mixers raging & pummelling static. The 'wall' sounds either like a continual yet  locked thunder storm like dwell, or a fixed yet slightly contoured  violent whirl pool roar. The track remains pretty much fixed ‘n’ roasting through-out it's length,   it’s an effective enough slice of locked down & brutal walled noise- it just sounds a bit blunt & one dimensional at times due to the lack of different toned textural layers.

Onto the second track, and after  a few seconds of sample collage we into  “LaBianca” ‘wall’ which is fairly similar to the raging  & unstoppable attack of the first track. This ‘wall’ mixes together grating mid toned textures with more soaring aquatic rushers- I’ll have to say I prefer this one over the first track, as there’s more defined/ different textural layers here, through that said the two or three textures do have a fairly similar pitch to them.  There's also  seems to be a little bit of subtle shift ‘n’ roll with in this ‘wall’ too, where you find chugs & searing texturing appearing in the ‘wall’s rush…but it’s nothing too active & really you’d have to count this as fairly unmoving HNW.

So to sum up two effective if in places  little bland slices of fairly fixed walled noise with a great true crime theme running in through-it. Certainly not the best work I’ve heard from this project- but if you already a a fan of NC work, or enjoyed thick & pummelling noise with a true crime theme running through it pick this up.

Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5

Roger Batty
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