VARIOUS ARTISTS  Merzbow / Sutcliffe Jugend / Satori  CD   (Cold Spring)   9.00

On April 19th, 2008, the ULU in London became the site of a staggering performance that consisted of full sets from Japanese noise god Merzbow, seminal UK power electronics pioneers Sutcliffe Jugend, and the long-running UK power electronics/harsh noise duo Satori. What a show that must have been! The aftermath of that lineup shoulda resulted in a mass tinnitus plague, I bet. In commemoration of this show, Cold Spring released a limited edition EP which was sold at the show that night, and whoch features one exclusive studio track from each of the performing artists. Limited to 1000 copies, the disc is packaged in a full color cardstock wallet, and if you're a fan of any of these artists, well, this is all top notch stuff.

Merzbow opens the disc with the nearly fifteen minute "Feedyellow Mix.1", and it's prime, skull-shattering Merz, a blast of massive white noise and bass-heavy low end squelch that is looped endlessly, with powerdrill noises and crunchy distortion and splattery sinewaves strewn over it all. Heavy and rhythmic and LOUD, the rhythmic sample that pounds away incessantly at the front of the mix actually sounds like tribal drumming run through a bunch of filters and fx processors, and creates a hypnotic percussive effect.

Sutcliffe Jugend are next with "Pigmother", a riff on the transgressive power electronic sludge of their latest album Pigdaddy. It's a shorter piece, just shy of five minutes, but Tomkins and Taylor create a nicely filthy and evil vibe in that short time, a horrific deathdirge of droning black sinewaves and honking feedback that sounds like someone blowing a death scream through a broken clarinet, swirling malevolent noise and looping vocal samples, and over top of it all is the voice of Kevin Tompkins muttering and mewling his scowling, derisive lyrics. Awesome.

Brit death-ritual industrialists Satori wrap this up with "Paralysis (Hypnopompic Mix)", and it's crushing. This is my first time hearing Satori, and I'm really digging the heavy machine dirge of this piece. Waves of electronic noise and blackend hiss are layered over distant tribal percussion and pulverizing piston blasts, while gutteral fx-damaged vocals hiss and vomit over top. Crushing.

Track Samples:
Sample : VARIOUS ARTISTS-Merzbow / Sutcliffe Jugend / Satori
Sample : VARIOUS ARTISTS-Merzbow / Sutcliffe Jugend / Satori
Sample : VARIOUS ARTISTS-Merzbow / Sutcliffe Jugend / Satori