Strange stuff that shows its ugly dysfunctional teeth from the beginning. and if you consider the fact that this is mostly electronica related, you know its going to be positively insane. It is, but in a groovy , almost danceable manner.
Imagine if you will, a DIY (one man, his guitar, and his set-up) collision between gabber, fantasy metal and Frank Zappa (Jazz from Hell era), and you will have an inkling of what’s on offer hear. This is easily the bizzarest thing I have had to review, that still falls under the category of music, though I’m hard pressed to call it any genre of rock or metal.
There are rich tones, that seem to test the limit of man’s synth arsenal (from traditional tones to really bizarre processed guitars and samples). The main traditional gabber /techno element is the almost omnipresent distorted (909 ?) kick. The rest is effectively unclassifiable. There are a couple of vocal samples, but that’s about it as far as vocals go. Its the busy compositional skills that will make your head spin. Even the mood is ambivalent, neither positive nor negative, happy nor sad but a anthemic emotion of narcissistic exuberance.
As the album proceeds, it becomes clear that Gumby and his band found a life beyond TV-Land, dropping acid in the Nation of Manga Soundtracks. Remember Jangli Jaggas, the bizarre fantsay/manga/metal tracker duo from the last 90’s/ early 00’s. This is them interpreting Mr. Bungle in German rave. Some of the melodies are so well done (the piano motif at 2:05 in “Ozyostess”) that my traditionalist heart wishes for a more conventional song to house them. But where old-schoolers will fret, the avant-garde aficionado will rejoice.
“Resistax” has more gothic sounding main theme, but the strange guitar tones, which sound like they are taken from a cheap sythesizer MIDI soundbank again undermine the effect. The song stutters, spurts, flows, rolls , loops and basically gives heart palpitations at high volumes. According to the mastermind behind this oddity, the guitars are usually edited to hell and back. It does grow on you with repeated listens, and I found myself coming back more than I thought I would.
A couple of criticisms : the song lengths could definitely use some trimming. With music this unconventional, it would definitely help. Additionally, some restraint as witnessed in “Ryguijtz Enin-Tilo” greatly enhances the effect of the busier pieces. And maybe, just maybe, some conventional sounding guitars would nicely contract with almost consistently synth-midi-guitar buzz. “Shyft Wall Boss” has some subtle touches that make it stand out (the dark sounding choir, the spaces).
In conclusion, this is a bold release that showcases a brilliant young mind flexing compositional muscles. I look to many fruitful years of DIY madness, and cannot even begin to imagine what collaborations would sound like.
Lest I forgot , here is the download link :
Label: Self Released
Avantgenre: Prog Rocktronica
Official site: http://redankh.bandcamp.com
Review online since: 01.12.2009 / 16:23:12
1.Kurjekyzan (We Are Back Again)
3.Shyft – Resistak (Red Ankh Cover)
5.Shyft – Wall Boss (Red Ankh Cover)
9.I Dunno II
11.Twenty Eight Seconds
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