SIMON BALESTRAZZI / UNCODIFIED “Split” C45 (Crash Tape #10 / Old Bicycle Records)

A devastating split between two Italian pioneers of electronic-industrial-noise, according to the bandcamp page, this split brings together two bleak studies in communication. Framed as Eine Ballade, Balestrazzis side is a haunting, creeping triptych pensive, slow-moving drones, with twisted piano samples slipping under the more consistent drones. Time seems to be deconstructed, placing the listener somewhere inside of a piano, and between notes. Eventually, a looped vocal sample emerges, providing the momentum to end the piece. The dynamics of listening are played with on this side, setting the graspability of sounds against each other.

The Uncodified side begins on a similar note, with low rumbling and high-pitched mechanical hissing. The sense of doom on this side is more active, and sonically it is reminiscent of Merzbow. Rhythmic bass pulses emerge frequently, only to fade out of view in the shadow of distorted screeching and clattering. Near the middle of this side, a multilayered drone is formed, with the mid-level crackling and giving way to an intermittent oceanic whisper. This side ends with a sense of rippling not dissimilar to the first side, but with a harder cutoff.

- - Bryan Counter