Thursday, 19 November 2009

Die Reitenden Leichen - Blutgericht (2009)

When I picked up this tape earlier this year I hadn't an inkling what greatness I was about to hear. I basically bought it because the description sounded good and because the artwork looked great (goes for all Monolitische Aktion tapes, really), and, like I said, little did I know just how much the sound (the sound!) would transcend that by miles.

Die Reitenden Leichen is wall noise project from Germany and (if I've got my facts straight) it's the same guy behind MX Nihil (and behind Monolitische Aktion), Matthias. Now wall noise seems pretty much the hype of the day (or of yesterday, I don't know), and as is the scene is flooded with disc upon disc upon tape upon tape upon record (less so though) of walls which the makers claim are progressively more nihilistic, bleak, unchanging, pure, and what-not. Needless to say not all of it will be actually very good, and actually a good part of it will actually be shit, actually. Those who all too desperately jump the bandwagon seem to be under the impression that wall noise is a fairly effortless venture, since there is (often) so little composition (or structure, generally) and only sound instead. However, to achieve good, no, great, texture, pace, crackle, still takes effort, perhaps a lot of it, and though the wall noise scene has garnered more criticism and incomprehension than praise, perhaps, extreme dislike of the phenomenon likely stems more from misinformation and the genre's unfortunate ubiquitousness (and, of course, bad taste on part of the haters). In fact, the scene has spawned many an excellent record. Blutgericht is perhaps a good start.

Like I said, a good deal of the wall noise available is claimed by artists and labels to be pure, nihilistic, unchanging, static, etcetera, and perhaps the relentless 60-minute unchanging crackle is something of an acquired taste? Blutgericht, however, is as pure as it is varied. Filling one side of a C60, it evolves (then barely noticeably, then more abruptly) from wall to wall; this skillful variety is pretty much unheard in the genre. The textures themselves are incredible throughout; various levels of fuzz and crunch, and a steady, very pleasant pace throughout the 30 minutes the thing lasts. As it was quite adequately described by Elliot from In Cat Hat Pants, "wall noise bleakness and really compelling muffled sound throughout different textures".

Excuse my rambling; to summarize: just give this thing a shot. Unfortunately it's already sold out (edition of 10, so yeah), but perhaps you're lucky enough to grab some newer releases (all of which are great as well). Sorry for the shitty sound; as soon as I stumble upon a better playback device for my tapes I'll upgrade this ish. Five tracks, but ripped as one thing since it's hard to indicate where one track ends and another begins. Doesn't really matter anyway, since it's best to listen to it whole. Enjoy!