Female Harakiri - Sad Premonition [Toxic Industries/Claustrophilia - 2014]This Japanese walled noise project has had one of the more erratic release schedules of the normally super prolific HNW scene. The project has been releasing work since 2007/2008, but only putting out a hand-full of releases on various labels, and pretty much everything they've put out has been of a very high standard. And the same goes for Sad Premonition, which is sadly to be the last release from Female Harakiri.
This release is a joint release between two respected underground Italian noise labels, HNW label Claustrophilia(run by Lorenzo Abba of blacked & suicidal wall noise project Nascitari), and HNW/ Harsh noise/ experimental label Toxic Industries (run by Fabrizio De Bon of industrial influenced Harsh Noise/ HNW project Fukte).
The release comes in DVD case that features a black, white & blood red cover, which features on it's front cover a blood spluttered picture of a smiling young oriental women. Also included is a A5 pink inlay slip which describes the theme/ concept behind the release. Theme wise, like most of this projects out put, this release is once again based around a troubled, dead, or haunting female figure. And it's subject/ theme is Yukiko Okada- a Japanese teen pop singer, who in 1983 won the Tokyo based TV talent show Star Tanj¨!. But sadly committed suicide in 1986 (at the age of 18), by jumping off the top of Sun Music building....it's still unclear why she committed suicide, but her death trigged a whole host of copy cat suicides in Japan.
The CDR features just a single self titled track which comes in at the 27.40 mark. The 'wall' jumps straight in with a thick & taunt mixture of murky low-range judder/ churn, this is cruelly weaved by a coarse jittering 'n' feasting mid range static tone . The mix of these two elements create a very captivating 'wall' which seems to be continual descending (very apt considering the releases theme) yet still very taut & tense. At around the 4th minute the murky/ low range tone seems to have wound down even more( which I guess could suggest the ground coming closer & closer to falling a body). At the same time the secondary jittering/ feasting tone seems even more caustic & seared- yet this also seems to be slowly dipping in it's pace. This steady & constant slowing in both textures seems to carry on through-out the most of the track- yet it never fully slows right down to a full stop. Also as the track progresses the textures start to blur/mix together more & more creating this great feel of trapped weighty tension. At around the 20th minute you get this swirling 'n' melted easy listening element fed into the wall, and this creates a feeling of child like sad-nests & unwell-ness. At the 22nd minute mark the 'wall' sudden cuts out, and in it's place we get a slow & moody piano melody, which seems slightly warped around the edges, under this is subtle vinyl like crackle. The piano element plays out for a little while longer then we just get the subtle looped vinyl crackle, and this ends the whole thing in a very sombre, poignant yet slightly unsettling place.
All told this is a truly great slice of walled noise, that' both captivating & sonically descriptive regarding it's theme & the sad fate of Ms Okada. This release comes in a fairly scene generous edition of 40 copies, so all been well you should still be able to get hold of this¡ this is certainly one of this years wall-noise highlights, and should not be miss by any self respecting 'wall-head'!.(review note- Through-out the review I've used the english translation of this releases title, as for some reason M[m] system won't deal with Japanese text today!)Roger Batty