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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

Trou Aux Rats - Le Cloaque Apres La Romance [At War With False Noise - 2020]

French experimental sound maker Romain Perrot is most known as Vomir- the king of crude ‘n’ unchanging HNW. Trou Aux Rats is his self-proclaimed 'funeral listening' project. Le Cloaque Apres La Romance is a two-CD set that focuses on a decidedly grimmer and wavering lo-fi sound pallet than his wall noise work- the album shifts through genres such as hazed noise matter, murky ambience, guitar drone crafting, and beyond

The Trou Aux Rats project began in the year 2017- releasing to date seven full-lengths, and few shorts/ splits. As far as I can recall this is my first taster of the project's work, and I must say I was rather surprised/ impressed by it. It’s easily the most ambient, at times hazily harmonic-edged thing I’ve heard from Perrot- really showing another very different, often emotional felt side to the Frenchman’s work.

The double CD set appeared on Glasgow’s At War With False Noise in October of 2020. The discs come presented in six-panel fold-out digipak- on its cover we find a grim monochrome drawing of a masked figure standing in front of field weeds and a broken-down stone folly. Inside and on the discs we find pictures of  Perrot in a monster mask. The release came in an edition of three hundred copies, and as of this review, the label still has copies available-which can be purchased here.

Over the two discs, Perrot presents us with twenty-six tracks, and nearing three hours’ worth of material.  And it’s all so a relatively varied ride too- sure, it’s all rather grim/ hazed- but it does shift through a few different genres/ sounds. 

The release opens with the barely ticking/heard beat, mournful guitar drone wash and faint billowing vocals of “En cette vallée de larmes”. We have the feasting static flow meets bluntly ornately piano key haze of “Impatientes, sur les monceaux sanglants”.  There’s the washed-out and wonkily warbling ambient drift meets slow-mo monk chant/ mumble of “Enfermé près de toi”.

Later on in the release we have the  wavering muzak  church organ hoover meets creepily reveb vocal flow of “Le sérail des beautés dont je m’entoure est fait de cadavres”. There’s the stretched ‘n’ wonky tolling vibes and damaged/ droned out harmonics of “Ses seins rebelles”.  We have the slowly snapping beats meets distorted- yet- hovering organ and felt mumbled vocals of “Les plis de la chair mollement écrasée”. With the album playing out with fragile tolling piano keys/ vibes meets waving muzak drift of “Signe inéluctablement ton existence du sceau de l’échec”.
 
In conclusion, Le Cloaque Apres La Romance is a very surprising and unexpected release from Mr Perrot.  Over the album's two discs it moves through quite a few genres, and different emotions with even harmonic/ wonky soothing vibes appearing. Certainly, something that will appeal to anyone who enjoys more lo-fi drone, murky ambience, or raw-yet-emotional soundscaping.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Roger Batty
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