Various Artists - "Zann"
(Silber Records 2000, silber 014)
From Aural Innovations #15 (April 2001)
Another fine compilation from Silber Records, a label that focuses on ambient, drone, and noise oriented experimental music. Because most of these artists have web sites and samples available at Mp3.com I'll just list them with a blurb about the tracks so if anything intrigues you then you can simply click away for further information.
Small Life Forms with Jarboe play pulsating drones against a high-pitched wailing sound. Like a drone interpretation of a Middle Eastern theme. CLICK HERE to hear samples from Small Life Forms' Mp3.com web site, and CLICK HERE to visit Jarboe's web site.
pFrenz-C play an interesting combination of a trippy early Pink Floyd styled psychedelic song and droning electronics and freaky looped sounds. CLICK HERE to hear samples from pFrenz-C's Mp3.com web site.
I had seen Trance To The Sun perform briefly when they played with Babylonian Tiles here in Columbus last year. They were the last band and I was unable to catch their entire set but I do recall them doing a cool rendition of Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun. I suppose Goth is what this would be considered and it's a good song with a haunting atmosphere and a symphonic feel. CLICK HERE to visit the Trance To The Sun web site, and CLICK HERE to hear samples from their Mp3.com web site.
Clang Quartet's track consists of searing, brain-splitting electronics. CLICK HERE to hear samples from their Mp3.com web site.
Jerry Blue's track is an experimental drone and percussion piece.
I'm sure most AI readers know SubArachnoid Space. But let me tell you I've never heard anything like this from them before. There's an insane growling vocalist that reminded me of Linda Blair's ranting in The Excorcist. But for those of you who enjoyed hearing Doug Ferguson sit in with the band on their recent A New And Exact Map CD, then note that he's on this track too. Wild and meandering spaced out psychedelia and some cool keyboard sounds, but also a jamming jazzy feel from the rhythm section. (Man, that singer is scary.) CLICK HERE to visit the SubArachnoid Space web site, and CLICK HERE to hear samples on their Mp3.com web site.
Origami Arktika play interesting atmospheric ambient/drones. CLICK HERE to visit their web site, and CLICK HERE to hear samples on their Mp3.com web site.
The Unquiet Void play rushing space drones that made me feel like I was in a wind tunnel. CLICK HERE to visit their web site, and CLICK HERE to hear samples on their Mp3.com web site.
Plumerai's track features mechanical factory sounds combined with carnival sounds. An intriguing contrast. I'd like to hear more from Plumerai.
Aarktica play atmospheric guitar drones. CLICK HERE to read review this issue of Aarktica's full length CD. CLICK HERE to hear samples from the Aarktica Mp3.com web site.
The Pulling Kiss track is a repetitive piano and percussion pattern and female vocals that are either crying or chanting, I'm not sure which. CLICK HERE to hear samples from their Mp3.com web site.
I liked Alchemia's track which consists of Middle Eastern chanting against a steady drone.
Pineal Ventana's contribution sounds like an avant-garde horror movie theme. Screeching string instruments and dark atmospherics. I was getting into this track but it's way too short. I'll have to check this band out further. CLICK HERE to visit the Pineal Ventana web site.
Rollerball play a meandering electronic piece.
dA Sebasstian plays a spacey atmospheric piece with vocals that sound a lot like Daevid Allen. CLICK HERE to hear samples from the dA Sebasstian Mp3.com web site.
Tore H. Boe's consists of a singular drone that I could feel deep in my chest and provides the backdrop for an efx'd monologue. Man, there's something about that tone that made this difficult to listen to. CLICK HERE to visit the Tore H. Boe web site.
Remora is Brian John Mitchell, head of Silver Records and the man who makes these cool compilations happen. Brian's track combines noise (not too harsh) and more ethereal sounds to produce an interesting contrast that reminds me of the Plumerai track. CLICK HERE to read about Remora on the Silber Records site, and CLICK HERE to hear samples from his Mp3.com web site.
Drekka is Chicago guitarist Michael Anderson, who plays a strange noisey version of "Jesus Loves Me". I didn't know the song but while I was listening my wife started chuckling and then singing the song, having remembered it from school when she was little.
For more information you can visit the Silber Records web site.
Contact via snail mail c/o Silber Records; PO Box 18062; Raleigh, NC 27619.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz