Friday, March 11, 2011

Merzbow - Merzbient (12CD Box Set) (2010)

Merzbow started playing live internationally in the late '80s, this required the use of simple and portable gear, which then influenced his studio sound. But he also continued to use junk and acoustic instruments in the studio, including a "big handmade junk instrument made from a metal box with piano wires" played with a violin bow, and recorded several hours of quieter material. The music was recorded in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, at a time when Masamik Akita (Merzbow) was becoming famous for his live performances, which featured some of the harshest sounds ever heard. The records he released mirrored these performances, and helped establish his reputation as the prime mover in the Japanese noise scene. The electronics he used for his recordings were the same ones he used for live shows. Out of necessity he toured with gear that was small, simple and portable. But all the while he was secretly recording quieter, more atmospheric music, and using a wide variety of acoustic instruments including afro mentioned impractical monstrosity. He made hours and hours of recordings, but kept them private and never released them, until they were eventually set aside and forgotten. He recently rediscovered the multi-track master tapes in a box and remastered them for release on CD. And what a discovery they are! These twelve discs represent a side of Merzbow never before heard. The music bears many of the signature styles expected from Merzbow – think of the theme of long-form drones pierced by random bursts of sound, for example – but it’s enticingly different from what we’ve heard before, with spacious sounds evoking prehistoric misty landscapes, desolate abandoned industrial sites, and sci-fi/horror film soundtracks. If the familiar and traditional Merzbow is like a jet plane taking off at full-throttle then “Merzbient” is the hanger where the plane was built. Not a violent assault on the ears, but something more interior, more personal, and more gentle.

Each disc comes in separate full-color sleeves, packed in a hardcover box with red foil printing. Includes a die-cast metal "動物解放" (Animal Liberation) medallion. Limited to 555 numbered copies. Printed in Hong Kong.

Recorded at ZSF Produkt Studio 1987-1990.
Digitally remastered from original cassette tapes March 2010.

1987 - tracks: 9-1, 10-1
1988 - tracks: 10-2, 12-2
1989 - tracks: 1-1 to 3-1, 11-2
1990 - tracks: 4-1 to 8-2, 11-1, 12-1

"RBA" means "Right Brain Audile", used by Akita for his soundtracks to bondage films produced by Right Brain, the term appears on the Music for Bondage Performance albums. "Capsule Cologne" and "UD II-S 90" were types of cassettes made by Hitachi Maxell.

Gots nos videos. It's ten hours of borderline almost abrasive sounds yet somehow oddly pleasant and consistent. I'm defiantly keeping this playing all weekend.though, for what it's worth