Monday, February 4, 2008

PANICSVILLE / OUBLIETTE Split (Hung Like A Horse?!)

Surely the pairing of Andy Ortmann and Seth Oubliette was a match made in noise purgatory, because even sixty minutes of material hardly seems enough. Panicsville's "Brain in the Cat" (probably a description of the album cover, which is as disgusting as you might think) could easily stand as an album in itself and is as diverse a work as anything Ortmann has released. "Gates of Hell" begins with a slow ambience but is quickly consumed by off-kilter junk rhythm loops, bagpipes (!) and greasy tape canoodling. "Horsemen's Club," "Pregnant At Birth" and the title track follow with similar collage techniques, rarely still but executed with great timing. Ortmann has a hundred methods of creating sound and enough bizarro ideas to match each one. Gurgling analog bubbles, tape decay, disorienting stereo effects, abused samples, harsh circuit-blowing cacophony- it's all there, like a gearhead's personal mixtape or a symphony for ADD degenerates. The superb mastering reveals every nauseating detail.
Oubliette's side is equally great for totally different reasons. The premise is simple: 1) cut up some Halloween sound effects records, and 2) turn on lots of distortion. Thus the greatest noise Halloween party tape ever was created. There are twelve tracks in all with slight pauses in beween, although it's not obvious why. It might have been the fun of naming two-minute snippets like "Enjoy the Scarf" and "Sad Bridal Shower," but "Never Enough Horror" sums it all up. RECOMMENDED!

www.hunglikeahorse.org