Kommissar Hjuler Und Frau/Panicsville - Split [Nihilist - 2018]Released on October 17, 2018, Nihilist Records' split between Kommissar Hjuler Und Frau and Panicsville comes forth in an interesting edition of 127 LPs. One hundred of these LPs are the standard, black vinyl, and twenty-seven are Special Art Editions, with each having its own unique collage. This collage package goes further to express the collage-like, experimental compositions found within.
Starting with Kommissar Hjuler Und Frau's side, this split begins with two tracks of experimental musique concrete. Titled "Grussverweigerung 1" and "Grussverweigerung 2," the two tracks play with minimal chime like tones, spoken German in the background, and soft, female singing in the foreground. Somewhat of a performance piece, and taking its time in variation, the first track eventually takes on a bit of a grimier tone with the noise increasing and the shriek level intensifying. This continues into the second offering, with the German taking on an increased fervor which plays well with the chaotic percussion and chimes. The female singing is gone, but now accompanies the male vocals in the back barking out and shrieking.
Following the fairly minimalist approach, the Panicsville side has altered recordings pasted over sort of weirdo electronics. The psychedelic approach is split over three tracks, "Dominatrix Printer," "Creakers and Huffers," and "I Like the Game Called Sardines." Consisting of random recordings over varied electronics, this side plays like an art school project mixing media with an inconsistent approach. Definitely the weaker of the two sides, Panicsville's mishmash of sounds leaves a lot to be desired.
An intriguing listen, the split between Kommissar Hjuler Und Frau and Panicsville showcases some interesting sounds and what looks to be very interesting packaging. However, with not too much in the way of sonic density or variation, it doesn't really lend itself to repeated listens. Outside of the limited vinyl pressing, this split is available digitally via Bandcamp, and that may be the preferred method for most listeners.Paul Casey