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- Atsusaku by Gareth Davis & Merzbow
8/10 Ant Staff review, 31 March 2016
Both frequent collaborators; Gareth Davis and Masami Akita join forces for the first time for two sides of densely textured, explosive noise for Moving Furniture Records. Housed in a sleeve designed by Rutger Zuydervelt that visualises some of the intricate sound patterns.
I’m playing this before breakfast in hope that it’ll blow the cobwebs out. I’m pleased to report it certainly has. Merzbow’s music is reliably energising, a legend in the noise genre - his reputation precedes him -- but what does Davis bring to the table? The first side comprises ‘Haihan’ and it’s often difficult to tell where Davis begins and Akita ends. Each artists sounds welding together in the fire of intensely chaotic digital scree. This makes the collaboration far more successful than two opposing layers of Davis’s bass clarinet and Merzbow’s psychedelic noise textures. Is Merzbow processing Davis’ output via computer? Is Davis blowing through a stream of effects/ processing? Are the two even in the same room? Did they share sound files? Who knows? What matters is what’s blaring out of the speakers; and that is the equivalent of having huge adrenalin injections into the brain and body. Pulverized by sound I’m now thoroughly cleansed and ready to face the day. Who needs coffee?
‘Kyohan’ comprises the second side of the LP. Here each contribution is far more defined with Davis providing some satisfying low end eruptions, while Merbow’s sounds are pouring out of the speakers and manifesting as zillions of tiny multi-coloured particles now orbiting the room. And it’s only 8:45am. Who needs drugs?
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