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- Gravitoni by Pan Sonic
9/10 Ant Staff review, 27 May 2010
Having read this albums title you would be forgiven for thinking this was inspired by the latest in avant garde Italian culinary genius > Pasta in a rich gravy sauce. What this is in fact is the final (weep!!!) album from this legendary Finnish duo. "It's better to burn out than to fade away" wrote Neil Young.... Well holy shit! Vainio and Vaisen come out with all guns blazing with a relentless, uncompromising and insane set of tracks. From the opening bars of 'Voltos Bolt' which literally is like bolts of pure electricity firing out of the speakers, you know you're in for a good pummeling. Forget the curve ball that was 'Katodivaiha'. For the greater part this is full on brutal, harsh and industrial rhythmic noise/ power electronics/ extreme techno. The distortion is deliciously powerful throughout, much in the same mode as Vainio's recent 'Vandal EP' for Raster Noton (which you basically need in your life cos it's just brilliant!). 'Wanyugo' is almost like an exaggerated dubstep piss take with its itchy beats and huge throbbing bass. 'Fermi' is a wicked linear groove builder with trademark bleeps and clever use of stereo with impending sense of paranoia. A cold beer in hand and this in my ears and I really am a very happy man. Onto 'Corona' then PHWWOOOOOoooOOOAAaaaARRrrRRrrrr!!!!!!!!! Watch your speakers folks and prepare for an enormous wall of pulsating oscillations and noise and then an absolutely unexpected and ridiculous barrage of tough as nails brain destroying zillion BPM kick drums. This really is a thrilling, exciting little number. I don't know how long I could stay on that ride before combusting. Onto 'Radio Qurghontepa' which is a mid-paced hypnotic maxi-distorto fest that's like a section of a cool metal riff looped up and little bursts of radio sound piped in. 'Trepanointi/ Treponation' is like electro-black metal, super doomy, a really massive, monster of track that sounds like the machines have become possessed. By the time we arrive at Vainamoisen Uni/ Vainamoinen Dreams' we're in dark and sinister hallucination territory with drones and dripping, fluid electronic sounds. All super creepy and otherworldly. Then off into some decaying beat abstraction recalling Vainio's recent 'Black Telephone of Matter' disc for Touch... Actually when I think about it it does feel that Vainio has had the greatest influence on these tracks, but that of course is purely speculation. 'Hades' is an un-nerving one with a wonderful sense of claustrophobia and tension with a distant low end throb pulsing like an irregular heartbeat. 'Kaksoivinokas' makes full use of stereo with beats switching from channel to channel with strange snatches of operatic vocal and cerebral sound design. The set concludes with the functional and endearingly titled 'Pan Finale' and what an unexpected and amazing track it is. (writer picks himself up from floor). HOLY FUCKING SHIT!!!!!!!!! This stunningly gorgeous and simultaneously gritty and shimmering slice of techno brilliance has let me utterly speechless and left my entire body covered in goosebumps. What a way to make an exit!!!! You know, having followed these guys for many years it saddens me that this is their last album, however I can't help but feel with this one they've taken things as far as they can so I guess it makes sense to disband. I mean where could they go from here??? Hats off to Pan Sonic > They pioneered minimal techno, evolved and incorporated pure analogue drone and have blurred the lines between techno and noise. It really does make me regret that I never got to experience the power of one of their now legendary live shows. Apologies if I went on a bit about this one... I got a wee bit excited. Super highly recommended.
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