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- North African Beserk by Trans Upper Egypt
9/10 Mike Staff review, 16 May 2012
Once again I'm playing guess-the-genre before I put the record on the player, and once again I'm wrong. This one looks like an astral synth record but actually it's scuzzy no-wave influenced indie noise with hypnotic murky grooves over the course of five tracks. Nice screenprinted sleeves, too, courtesy of Monofonuspress.
It's got that organically mucky aesthetic that Dirty Beaches is/are getting so many people excited about lately, taking the Suicide template and dragging it into a dirty old crust squat with a load of broken amplifiers and forcing it to listen to The KVB and Factory Floor. There's basically a constant wash of distortion and fuzz out of which the tunes and repeato grooves emerge, with unapologetic Hawkwind electronic madness thrown in for good measure at choice moments (epic closing track 'TLW are deaf' finishes with a cacophonous jam that records the 'Wind at their most unhinged).
The first side ends with a little energetic punk rock miniature that's pretty snotty but for the most part these songs are given enough time for the repetition to really have a similar effect to techno music and it's hard not to bob about once they get a head of steam going, but juxtaposed with the horrible Dirty Beaches/Teenage Panzerkorps style dirt-rock tone palette it makes for a sensual but filthy listening experience. Very cool.
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