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- Iiron by CoH
I'm unaware of Coh. Apparently this person is called Ivan Pavlov, is Russian (no shit, Sherlock!!) and his moniker stands for 'Sleep' or 'Dream'. I'm unsure whether he has a dog or not but he sure has a lot of guitars. This is the follow-up album to the decade old 'Iron' which was also, supposedly, a de-constructed abstract 'metal' album too. Well, I say 'metal' in the loosest sense. 'Iiron' consists of some pretty harsh metallic riffing & this downtuned caustic melee is often merged with sporadic elements of industrial, experimental & doom music. As Pavlov is a sound artist there's bound to be some tonal electronic horseplay to contend with amongst the wildly processed & bent-out-of-shape (I.E. tuneless, badly played) guitars. So said tones, textures & electronic bloops are found to show their face amongst the stumbling sheet-metal rifferama and general abrasive fannying around. I just wish it didn't sound like some rock wannabee practicing in his bedroom half the time, like Brett quite rightly pointed out. Apparently this record has "a sense of humour". Maybe we've all had a bypass here as we think it just sounds "a bit shit". Sorry!
One of electronic music's most unpredictable artists turns to the eternal dark forces of metal for inspiration on 'IIron'. Occurring 10 years after the original 'Iron' on his own Wavetrap label, Ivan Pavlov has returned to his illicitly made Soviet-era metal recordings, alloying them with recent guitar tracks made at York University's Music Research centre and a dash of his cold, black humour to bend the genre into fascinatingly malleable and reactive shapes. Riffs are looped and sliced into jabbing slabs of force whose impact is somewhat twisted out of context when arranged with skanking folk dance pulse rhythms on 'Slowup (Quadrate Fur Jah)' or blunted with a barrage of glancing electronics and idiosyncratic melodic torsion in 'Fists Of Glory'. On 'All Lights Are Fire' the guitars timbre is almost indiscernible and pushed to the background only to leap forth at unexpected junctures, making its most impressive appearance in this fashion on the eccentric techno/metal jam 'Satsugali', but when he uses them in accordance with the scriptures of metal, albeit dislocated and manipulated on the nine minute 'War End War' epic, they're alternately terrifying and comical. Most of all, this album is about the nuances of Pavlov's unquestioned compositional skill and the deadly visceral dynamic he applies to it, all with the most suggestive electronic winks and sardonic devil fingers.
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