Merzbow – Kujakubato: 13 Japanese Birds Pt.7 (Important) 2009


Phewww! He had me a bit worried there. After the mediocre tracks on the last instalment of this series I had my concerns that he was running out of ideas. Pt.7 is absolutely fucking terrific. Nearly as good as Pt.2 in fact. For once the gonzo drumming has been set to one side. Instead we get Merzbow acting like a solemn metronome on the first track before settling into a standard rock beat on the second and allowing his variety of analogue machines create the necessary fuzzy tension.  I think it is also a record that benefits from playing very loud. For a lot of noise records, unless the volume is turned up, the listener can miss a lot of the action in the tracks and the whole thing can sound like aural wallpaper. Turn this one up and you’ll hear fleeting Rehberg-style electronic thunderbolts and  those layers of unpleasantness that weave in and out of his best work to become something very satisfying. On Kujakubato he again allows light  to penetrate his noise (even on the metal heavy third track). There are moments of clarity and space and it is for these reasons that critics in the future may remember this series. Not just because the great man went all spazzo on the drums.

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