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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

Vàg - Music For Smoke-Filled Elevators [Self Release - 2013]

Vàg is a UK based HNW/ANW project that started in January 2013. “Music For Smoke-Filled Elevators” is the project first CDR release, and it takes in four tracks worth of ambient industrial tinged ANW.

This release originally appeared in digital form back in July 2013 via the projects band camp site, before this they released one other digital download in the form of January 2013’s “Disposal”.


The CDR’s four tracks last between just over nine minutes, to just shy of the thirteen minute mark. The CDR comes in a grey paper sleeve that features what looks like a close-up picture of a fossil, rock, or similar uneven & earthy looking texture.


The first track up is entitled “Umbilical Coils”, and it’s built around a fixed billowing low-end judder that is slowly shifted by reverb licked sub-tones. The whole ‘wall’ is distant & slightly muffled in it’s feel, and as the track progresses it seems to slowly blur & fade back more & more. To start with the track seem to rather lack  concentration sustainability, but as it goes on there are some quite subtle yet eerier shifts in the sub-tones, and towards the end it almost take on a fixed rhythmic rumble.

Track two is entitled “Béton Brut”, and is built around what sounds like a fixed machine like churn & rotate, which has been faded & muffled. Once again you get the odd sub-tone rumble & bobbing around the main tone in quite an organic way, but these don’t really build into or feed to anywhere interesting.

Track three comes in the form of “Oxide Inhaler”, and this 'wall' consist of more intense rumbling & roasting machine drone, which has a fixed whistling ‘n’ churning feel in it’s guts. Once again this track has a muffled & faded feel, but to my ears I’d say that this is just a distant slice of HNW instead of truly ANW, as the textures don’t really drift or haze enough for ANW.

Lastly we have “Antonym”, which is the longest track here at the 12.50, but sadly it’s the least rewarding of the four tracks here. It’s built around a rather bland & fixed rumbling tone, which seems to be slowing & fading as it goes along in a extremely subtle manner. This track just really bored me, and it  felt like the audio equivalent of watching paint dry.

It’s good to see new acts trying their hand at the ANW sound, as I really think this ambient off-shoot of Harsh noise wall has a  lot of potential & scope for growth.  Through-out “Music For Smoke-Filled Elevators” there are moments of effective stark atmospherics & ambient machine fed grim-ness, but sadly none of the tracks here were consist or compelling enough through-out thier whole lenghts.  So there is promise here, but I think there just needs to be more work putting into placing of tones & their atmospheric manipulation.

Rating: 2 out of 5Rating: 2 out of 5Rating: 2 out of 5Rating: 2 out of 5Rating: 2 out of 5

Roger Batty
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