Bourbonese Qualk - Hope [Klanggallerie - 2020]
Originally released back in 1984 Hope is a dense & often careering blend of rhythmic percussive work-outs- be they organic or electronic, soured industrial drifts, wayward sample sweeps, DIY electronica, sinister–to-funk bound bass tones, noise, and from time-to-time vocals that take in either shouty chants or wailing post-punk vocals. Bourbonese Qualk where are a experimental music collective with anarchistic leanings from Southport UK- and Hope was the band's fifth release. From Klanggallerie here we have CD reissue of the album.
The CD takes in the original eleven track album, adding in three other tracks from the same period- and the best way to describe the album as a whole is very loose, wondering & jam-like- in both its song structures & genre elements heard. So one minute you could be hearing dart ‘n’ pulsing early electronica, the next bounding crusty bound funk with shouted chants, moving onto political rants meets over tranced-out ethno jams, rattling ‘n’ banging junk percussion marches, blends of bounding drums & evenly swarming samples, and beyond.
With Hope Bourbonese Qualk were certainly trying to create a very free-yet-often angry record that shifts & blends all over the early 1980’s genre map. And while I respected & admire what they were trying to do, I’m afraid to say more often than not the tracks feel too messy & loose for their own good. They often wonder-off the boil, or over add elements, so as a result, they feel often shapeless & awkwardly formed. Sure you can most certainly feel the collectives anarchistic spirit & passion- the main issue is it lacks focus, balanced form & structure. Sure with a basic guitar, drums & bass set-up you can create anarchic punk, but if your attempt to do the same with more experimental musical structures & tools- and you don’t have the flair, focus or control then it falls flat as wondering mess, which I’m afraid much of Hope is.
Once again it’s great to Klanggallerie digging back into the 1980’s industrial/ experimental sonic depts to release another forgot album. But I’m afraid Hope just wasn’t for me lacking to little shape or focus…but if you do enjoy murky & haphazard industrial rhythmic fare with anarchistic feel & loose genre-blending you may get something from it.Roger Batty