JFK  La Bas 1987-1992  CD   (Fourth Dimension)   17.98

After helping to create the lumbering blown-out post-industrial psychedelia of Skullflower and the mangled power electronics of Ramleh, Anthony Di Franco went on to record under a variety of names, producing a bunch of amazing releases throughout the late 80s and early 90s with the blackened synth industrial outfit AX and the crushing lysergic noise of Ethnic Acid. Less well known was Di Franco's solo project JFK, which actually predated his other bands and initially formed as a low-fi bedroom project in the early 80s. Over the following decade, though, Di Franco ended up recording a number of releases under the JFK name, some of which appeared on labels like the flagship UK power electronics imprint Broken Flag and Fourth Dimension Records. JFK's sound was a kind of brutal industrialized post-punk, driven by pounding machinelike kick drums and slithering distorted bass-lines, droning and monotonous and mechanical as sheets of corrosive guitar noise, squealing feedback and eerie death-rock melodies slowly drift overheard.

In some ways, these songs are comparable to a darker and more gothic-tinged version of Skullflower's late 80's thud rock, taking the kind of hypnotic, pummeling low-fi sludge rock that Matthew Bower would later perfect on albums like Xaman and IIIrd Gatekeeper and fusing it to a super-heavy, sludgy gloom-punk sound that almost feels like a more psychedelic take on the reverb-drenched gothic sludge of bands like Peace Corps and Mighty Sphincter. Di Franco's nasally vocals even fit that death rock mold, but that sound was largely restricted to the earlier JKF recordings. The later track center around dark droning riffs that are repeated over and over while the simple plodding drums tick away in the background and pieces of scrap metal clank and bang, while other songs like "Will To Love" are sprawling twelve minute psych-dirges built around malfunctioning synths and whirring effects, bleeping Hawkwindian electronics and trance-inducing junk rhythms, eerie flute sounds and garbled tape noise all woven into abstract industrial clankscapes that stretch out into infinity, or slip into a mangled mess of Flippery sludge-punk. The song "Avernus" unleashes an ocean of churning black synthdrift that is as oppressive and menacing as Di Franco's blackened drones in Ax and Novatron, and there are three tracks that feature Matt Bower on guitar ("Black Tower", "Sexodus (Alternative Version)" and "Teenage Fantasy") that offer up huge grinding drone-rock monstrosities with crushing blown-out riffage looping around slippery, slime-slick guitar skree.

The later tracks that come off the Sexodus 7" also present a slight shift in sound, from the killer motorik drone rock crunch of "Temple Of Set" (whose super heavy and hypnotic metallic riff locked on repeat could almost pass for a Circle song) to the swingin' Sabbathoid noise rock of "Sexodus" delivering a heavier, more rocking sound. All of these recordings will be of interest to fans of the 80's post-industrial underground for obvious reasons, but the later JFK material is especially recommended if you're into the more rock-based, heavily distorted music of late-period Ramleh and Skullflower, early Godflesh, Head Of David and Splintered. There was already a vinyl-only collection of JFK material called Teenage Fantasy that came out a while back, but this features completely different material, with most of the songs never before released. Comes in digipack packaging, and limited to three hundred copies.

Track Samples:
Sample : JFK-La Bas 1987-1992
Sample : JFK-La Bas 1987-1992
Sample : JFK-La Bas 1987-1992