A thirteenth broadcast from the perennially engaging electroacoustic improvisation group Supersilent. There are only three of the Norwegians here on 13, but the broad array of instruments and the even broader array of playing techniques mean that the band’s soundworld is as full and immersive as ever. On Smalltown Supersound.
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- 13 by Supersilent
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Uh oh: Supersilent just turned teens. They celebrate their thirteenth release with the same old improvisational growing pains and some grumpy drones that may or may not suggest that parents just don’t understand, I don’t know. Having released a slew of detaching band swirl for Rune Grammofon, their newest for Smalltown Supersound has that same mix of silence and disorganised sound, construed from the same process: the band go into the studio with nothing prepared and come out with something gained. Like the Dead C, but the noises are more waiting room than construction site.
There’s a few too many sounds to describe, as per your average Supersilent rumble pack, but the atmosphere is as clear as ever: this band have a knack for making records that sound cold and robotic while the acoustics help paint a picture of a band proper. The icy drone synths on “13.2” have nothing to do with the sound splashes of the track that comes before it, while the horror-flick free jazz of “13.3” takes an entirely different course of action once more, ditto the smoother, more solo-oriented iterations of “13.6”. Improvisation makes Supersilent’s work a mixed bag on spec, but ‘13’ is a somehow atmospherically consistent work that offers vignettes of eerie.
There’s plenty to love in these crooked art spaces for fans of Supersilent old and new, for those fascinated with hearing something on the spot get turned to stone -- this set ultimately expands on those parameters that both unleash and restrain the band’s sound. Drone jazz and soul-sucked noise? We’ll take the lot.
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