We™ - As Is

The 1997 debut of "illbient" (aka instrumental hip-hop/dub/noise hybrid) trio, with guest appearance by violinist Eyvind Kang.

We™ - As Is

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Various - Beginners Night At The Tape Loop Club




Quality compilation of people producing lovely looped drones including Sindre Bjerga and Jan-Morten Iversen, Stefan Kushima, Ian Najdzionek's Dream Safari, the wonderful Spoils & Relics, Terje Paulsen, and Joseph Martin.

CDr released on Sindre Bjerga's Gold Soundz in 2009.

Beginners Night At The Tape Loop Club

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Various - Macro Dub Infection, Volume 2




I wouldn't have thought of posting this without Mrs Inside's earlier intervention. This is very typical of the industrial club dub techno vibe that was prevalent at the time. I was getting very heavily into English heavy techno and drum and bass round about then so well y'know ...

Macro

Dub

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va - Macro Dub Infection Volume 1

Another double-disc set compiled by Kevin Martin, featuring music from Omni Trio (formerly known as Robert Haigh/Sema), Automaton (heavy industrial dub by Bill Laswell), Mad Professor, Coil, Tortoise, 4 Hero, Spring Heel Jack, Wagon Christ, Ice, Iration Steppas and more.

disc 1
disc 2

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Various - Rewired Burglar Alarms




Spectacular reworkings of the New Sounds For Burglar Alarms CDr courtesy of Pål Asle Pettersen, Robert Horton, Sten Ove Toft, Per Gisle Galåen, Steffan De Turck, Andy Jarvis and Mikarla Jarvis (from the Stoke/Leeds collectives that unanimously bring joy to the world), Kurt Bolianatz, Jan-Morten Iversen, Charles Balls (aka Andrew Zukerman) and Anders Gjerde. Very very very good!

CDr released on Sindre Bjerga's Gold Soundz in 2006.

Rewired Burglar Alarms

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va - Ambient 4: Isolationism

The fourth volume of Virgin Records' series of ambient compilations is the only one I listen to with any frequency. Compiled by Kevin Martin (of GOD, Ice, The Bug and Techno Animal), it features music by Ice, Techno Animal, O'Rang (aka Mick Harris), Scorn and Lull (both Harris again), Final, Main, KK Null, Jim O'Rourke, Labradford, Disco Inferno, James Plotkin, KK Null, Sufi (aka a member of 4AD's A.R. Kane & M/A/R/R/S), Zoviet France, Nijiumu (aka Keiji Haino), Total, Thomas Koner, AMM, Experimental Audio Research, Aphex Twin, Seefeel, Paul Schutze, Raoul Bjorkenheim, David Toop & Max Eastley. I suppose "isolationism" was intended to be a marketing-friendly term for dark drone music, but the diversity of this compilation implies that it never meant much. Still, it's a great album and has held up longer than the word "isolationism" (or illbient, glitch, lowercase, IDM and so on) ever did.

disc 1
disc 2

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Sindre Bjerga - New Sounds For Burglar Alarms!




Norwegian legend produces 2 minutes of blinding noise followed by a 15 minute intro to a Sunn O))) song that they wished they'd written.

3" CDr released on DOKURO in 2009.

New Sounds For Burglar Alarms!

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ABH - Drag




The first side is full of groaning metal infiltrated by material from The New Blockaders' seminal "Changez Les Blockeurs". The second side is the sound of Nobuo Yamada battling with quantum physics.

C30 released on the excellent Vitrine in 2016.

Drag

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Artbreakhotel - Crazy Lotta




This is probably as close to Harsh Noise as Nobuo Yamada gets ... and it's (obviously) wonderful.

C40 released on Tordon Ljud in 2014.

Crazy Lotta

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Artbreakhotel - Tut / Nix




Ever wanted to put random metal objects into a tumble dryer and turn it on to see what it sounds like? I have ...

Excellent C10 jointly released in Japan on VLZ Produkt and HISSterik Tapes in 2010.

Tut / Nix

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ARTBREAKHOTEL - Contemporary Metal Vibes




When you sit down and listen to Nobuo Yamada you start to think that you recognise parts of his field recordings and that engenders a degree of superficial familiarity. But there is no such thing in any of his works. Everything is new. Everything is different. Frankly, the man's a genius.

CDr released on ABH in 2008.

Contemporary Metal Vibes

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ARTBREAKHOTEL - Circulation Of Dive




Operatic fury and soaring metal noise clangour followed by it's inverse deconstruction. Or something like that. Or rearrange the words in any particular order. Or just listen because it really is great.

CDr released on ABH in 2007.

Circulation Of Dive

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Artbreakhotel / Graham Moore - Split




Nobuo Yamada (possibly) using the same source material that he used in Empty Can Street Orchestra but taking it into a completely different (noise) direction. Graham Moore is the founder of Blossoming Noise and played in a host of other outfits. He contributes a wealth of cut up glitch that sounds like an unholy alliance between Crank Sturgeon, AFX and Id M Theft Able. Strange but true!

CD released on Blossoming Noise in 2005.

Artbreakhotel / Graham Moore

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Nobuo Yamada - Cheap, Metal, Motion




More junk metal and household objects explored and exploited with the final track, involving a musical box, pointing directly to the noise recordings that would follow under a different name.

CDr released on his own ABH label in 2002.

Cheap, Metal, Motion

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Nobuo Yamada - Tape Recorder's Mad Joy




Riotous cut-up glitch and clipped noise loops ...

CDr released on ABH in 2003.

Tape Recorder's Mad Joy

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Nobuo Yamada - Vase Echoes




Recording devices placed inside ordinary vases and the vases placed in diverse locations. An astonishingly wonderful example of what you can create with the potential sounds that lie around you. I'm assuming that it helps if you are a genius.

CDr released on ABH in 2004.

Vase Echoes

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Nobuo Yamada - Empty Can Street Orchestra




Field recordings of tin cans being dragged through a mine and a tunnel before being turned into electronic compositions. Why? Because it's a great idea ...

CDr released in Japan on his own ABH label in 2008.

Empty Can Street Orchestra

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Matsuo Ohno - Play On Animals




Frankly bizarre collection of processed animal sounds forced into the shape of traditional songs from around the world. Why? Not a clue ...

Originally released as a flexi disc in 1970, this is the vinyl 7" reissue on EM Records from 2011.

Play On Animals

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Divination - Distill

I don't understand how Bill Laswell names things. Divination has been the "band" name he's used for a drone/dub project that's been just him by himself and, at other times, collaborations with people from his usual stable (Buckethead, Nicky Skopelitis, Robert Musso, etc) and with entirely different bands (including Jah Wobble, DXT, Mick Harris and many others). For this double album, though, Divination appears to be listed on the cover as the band name, though the content is a compilation. I don't get it, and maybe I don't need to. It could be that Divination only refers to the mood... something that in the 1990s was called "isolationist", a dark electronic drone with nods toward languid cough-syrup dub. On "Distill", you get long solo yawns by Bill Laswell, his regular collaborator Anton Fier, FAX Records staples Pete Namlook and Testu Inoue, Thomas Koner (Async Sense), Haruomi Hosono (of Yellow Magic Orchestra), Paul Schutze, and Mick Harris.

disc 1
disc 2 

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Matsuo Ohno - Astro Boy / Yamatoji / Yuragi / And The Others




I'm testing my memory now ... originally Astro Boy was called The Mighty Atom but, when the manga was translated into an American cartoon, the nuclear reference was made more acceptable ... hey kids, if only trumpy was around then!

The first part is Matsuo Ohno announcing, for instance, "Astro Boy’s Telescopic Neck" followed by the sound effect. From there, you drift away into the longer form compositions ...

CD released on King Records in 2005.

Astro Boy ... And The Others

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Matsuo Ohno - I Saw The Outer Limits / The War In Space




Sterling electronic compositions that were used as part of the soundtracks for the two titular films that were released in 1978 and 1977 respectively.

CD released on King Records in 2005.

I Saw The War In Space

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Matsuo Ohno - Memory In The Beginning




Matsuo Ohno is a legendary composer using electronics to create beautiful soundscapes that have been used as soundtracks and effects used in what would appear (from an occidental perspective) in the most unlikely places. Run yourself a bath and drink this in.

CD released on King Records in 2005.

Memory In The Beginning

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Ice - Bad Blood

Like Techno Animal's excellent "The Brotherhood of the Bomb", Ice attempted a major label industrial hip-hop album and it's just as good. El-P (of Run the Jewels) appears on one song and Blixa Bargeld (who I assume you know) appears on three songs.

Ice - Bad Blood

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Stretchheads - Five Fingers, Four Thingers, A Thumb, A Facelift, And A New Identity




Brilliant debut LP that is closer to the grind vibe than their later releases ... short, sweet and full on!

P6 is still very much "at it". You should take a trip to the cheekily titled Naloxone Sounds to peruse his wares and if you scroll down, there is some of the great Stretchheads' Oregano Accumulator set for name your own price download.

... and here's the bit that usually gets ignored ... I think the "Bros Are Pish" 7" might be a promo for this LP but I've never heard it to make a judgement ... any chance out there?

LP released on Moksha Recordings in 1988.

Five Fingers

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Ice - Under the Skin

More slow, noisy dub by Kevin Martin of GOD, The Bug and Techno-Animal. Released in 1993 on Pathological Records.

Ice - Under the Skin

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The Stretchheads - Three Steps To Heaven




For fellow trainspotters out there, until 1989, Richie Dempsey (who was later in Dawson) was the Stretchheads' drummer. This is an early appearance of tracks that would later appear on their debut LP.

The cover features Robert Budd Dwyer, the State Treasurer of Pennsylvania who was facing a 55 year sentence for bribery. On January the 22nd 1987, he gave an impassioned press conference stating his track record on repealing the death penalty and pleading his innocence. He then handed out letters to three of his trusted colleagues, pulled a revolver from a padded envelope in his briefcase, put it in his mouth and killed himself on live TV. The chief witness for the prosecution later admitted that he had lied on oath to receive a lighter sentence ...

Single-sided C24 released on K7 in 1987.

Three Steps To Heaven

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Stretchheads - Pish In Your Sleazebag




Housewife Up Yer Fuckin Arse Music and other warped delights courtesy of my favourite Scottish head the balls.

CD version that includes the earlier 23 Skinner 12" and the Eyeball Origami Aftermath Wit Vegetarian Leg 7" as bonus tracks. Released on Blast First in 1991.

Pish In Your Sleazebag

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Various - Untitled




Kilgore Trout with an awful Depeche/OMD styled toe-tapping travesty, P6 and Snkhngvr eating crisps, The Sad Dragons fucking about (P6 again?) and Stretchheads with a live cover of Manic Depression.

Single-sided flexi 7" that came with the excellent Leeds-based (with a bit of Manchester thrown in for good measure) fanzine Ablaze! I've got the mag somewhere but can't put my hands on it ... I'm pretty sure that this was from Issue 7 in 1990. If you care about such things (and you really should) or ever went to The Duchess Of York, you need to read Karren's book The City is Ablaze!.

Ablaze!

Whilst I'm here ... this is the Stretchheads Peel session from July 1991. The Peel Session website says there are only four tracks but this scavenged item also comes with covers of the theme songs for The Sweeney and The New Avengers. There's also a four minute interview from Dutch radio where the host really tries to do it seriously. Poor bugger never stood a chance!

peel slowly and see

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Stretchheads - Barbed Anal Exciter




Andy MacDonald on guitar, Steven MacDougall on bass, Jason Boyce on drums and P6 (aka Phil Eaglesham) on shouty business. Brilliant Glasgow / Paisley based noiserock "psych ward hardcore" outfit with a sly sense of humour and a firmly placed tongue between your cheeks. Think Heresy meets Trumans Water and then think again.

10" released on Blast First in 1991.

Barbed Anal Exciter

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Silverfish - Fuckin' Drivin' Or What...




Andrew Duprey on guitar, Chris Mowforth on bass, Stuart Watson on drums and Lesley Rankine on bellows. Cracking band that I never got to see live, I even wrote to them asking them to get their arses up to Manchester ... not saying I'm bitter ... but ...

Silverfish released on Creation Records in 1991.

Fuckin' Drivin' Or What...

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Techno Animal - The Brotherhood of the Bomb

Another great one by Martin & Broadrick, "The Brotherhood of the Bomb" came out on Matador in 2001 and fully embraces in-the-red noisy hip-hop and dub in a way that foreshadow's Martin's work as The Bug. Anti-Pop Consortium, Vast Aire, El-P, Dalek and Rob Smith contribute to several tracks.

Techno Animal - The Brotherhood of the Bomb

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Silverfish - T.F.A. e.p.




Feedback spiked buzzsaw noiserock from the London quartet that barely left my turntable during '89/'90 ...

12" released on Wiiija Records in 1989.

T.F.A. e.p.

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Techno Animal - Radio Hades

More successful than their "Ghosts" album were Techno Animal's singles and compilation tracks, many of which were released by minimal techno/house label Force Inc. Several of those stand-alone songs were collected into this album, which is (to my ears) the most enjoyable thing the duo did in its lifetime. Released by Position Chrome in 1998.

Techno Animal - Radio Hades

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Terminal Cheesecake - Angels In Pigtails




Terminal Cheesecake existed between 1988 and 1994. This is rightly seen as their stone-cold classic. It's a sprawling, mindbending psychedelic noiserock masterpiece.

... and then, out of an apparently clear blue sky, in 2015 they re-formed (or at least started to record again). Better that that, the frontman is now the one man tornado (and former Gnod vocalist) Neil Francis. You should check out Cheese Brain Fondue: Live In Marseille and Dandelion Sauce Of The Ancients and the split 7" with Anji Cheung. I saw them live 2 or 3 weeks ago and they were great ... the support was from Blown Out and Cattle ... if any of these people play near you, you really need to go and see them.

CD released on Kevin Martin's Pathological Records in 1990.

Angels In Pigtails

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Techno Animal - Ghosts

In 1991, the same year that Godflesh came out with their masterwork "Pure", Kevin Martin and Justin Broadrick made this strange album of unentertaining industrial beats. Released on Martin's Pathological Records label.

Techno Animal - Ghosts

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Terminal Cheesecake - Bladdersack




The mighty Bladdersack is a damn fine way to introduce yourself to the unsuspecting world ...

Inaugural 12" released on Wiiija Records in 1988.

Bladdersack

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Terminal Cheesecake - Johnny Town-Mouse




The Terminal Cheesecake history is long and convoluted with tendrils that stretch into GOD, Skullflower and Head Of David ... so let's keep it to the practical information: this is monstrous acid-fried English noise rock!

This is their first LP released on Wiiija Records in 1988.

Johnny Town-Mouse

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GOD - Possession

In 1992, major labels Caroline and Virgin thought it was a wise idea to release a mammoth slab by Kevin Martin's industrial noise jazz orchestra, GOD. This album, their final full-length, includes more notable musicians sitting in: John Zorn is one of the four sax players here and jazz weirdo Gary Smith plays guitar alongside Justin Broadrick. Peter Kraut (of Albolth!) plays piano. The usual arsenal of three bass players is accompanied by two drummers. If that seems like an unnecessary amount of people, that's because it is.

GOD - Possession

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GOD / Terminal Cheesecake - Meathead / Car First






Each band covering the other's song ...

7" released on Clawfist (as part of their wonderful Clawfist Singles Club series) in 1990.

Meathead / Car First

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GOD - Loco

A heavy live album by Kevin Martin's triple-bass big band, this time including Eddie Prevost (of AMM) on percussion. Released by Martin's own Pathological Records in 1991.

GOD - Loco

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GOD - Appeal To Human Greed




A set of GOD tracks remixed by Lumberjacks, Bill Laswell, Justin Broadrick, Kevin Shields and Kevin Martin.

CD EP released on Big Cat in 1995.

Appeal To Human Greed

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GOD - Breach Birth

A vinyl-only EP released by Situation Two in 1990.

GOD - Breach Birth

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GOD - Consumed




Apocalyptic hypnosis recorded live at Rote Fabrik, Zurich, Switzerland on March the 28th, 1992.

CD jointly released on Sentrax and Blazer Corps. in 1993.

Consumed

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GOD - The Anatomy of Addiction

First full album by GOD, the big industrial/metal/jazz band led by Kevin Martin (better known these days as The Bug) on tenor sax and vocals. The band also included Justin Broadrick (of Godflesh), improv bassist John Edwards, saxophonist Tim Hodgkinson (of Henry Cow) and more... a lot more! This record includes a total of three bass players, two drummers, bass clarinet, saxophone, two guitarists, a viola player and other folks contributing to the godlike din. Released on Big Cat in 1994.

GOD - The Anatomy of Addiction

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AMM - Laminal




Across the years, you get Christopher Hobbs, Cornelius Cardew, Eddie Prévost, John Tilbury, Keith Rowe and Lou Gare. The release is dedicated to Evan Parker ...

Triple CD set released on Matchless Recordings in 1996.

Recorded in Aarhus, Denmark on the 16th of December 1969

Recorded at Goldsmiths' College, London on the 20th of February 1982

Recorded at Context Studios, New York on the 3rd of May 1994

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AMM & MEV - Apogee




On the first disc, you have three collaborations with AMM (Eddie Prévost, John Tilbury and Keith Rowe) and Musica Elettronica Viva (Alvin Curran, Frederic Rzewski and Richard Teitelbaum) ... if that doesn't thrill you with delight them you have already stopped reading this ...

Double CD released on Matchless Recordings in 2004.

Collaboration

Split

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MEV / AMM - Live Electronic Music Improvised




The very definition of "it does what it says on the tin".

LP released on Mainstream Records in 1970.

Live Electronic Music Improvised

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AMM - Before Driving to the Chapel we Took Coffee with Rick and Jennifer Reed

Recorded live at Rice University in Houston, TX in 1996, released as a CD by Matchless Recordings in 1997.

AMM - Before Driving to the Chapel we Took Coffee with Rick and Jennifer Reed

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Musica Elettronica Viva - Friday




Alvin Curran, Frederic Rzewski, Gunther Carius, Richard Teitelbaum and Franco Cataldi. A release so far ahead of it's time ... what the hell did people even begin to make of it 48 years ago?

Initially released on vinyl in 1969, this is the CD reissue on Alga Marghen from 2008.

Friday

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