Zbigniew Karkowski and Daniel Menche – Unleash (Alien 8) 2008

This is my favourite noise record. Period. I’m not saying it’s the best noise record, merely my favourite.

Much of Menche’s best work (like Kevin Drumm and Merzbow) occurs in collaboration. Here the combined force of Menche’s processed, percussive, drone and the electronic squall and decay of Karkowski make for a heady mix. The six tracks on display here are in fact one long real time improvisation split up as it glides seamlessly into different movements. I’m much more familiar with Menche’s work so the striking aspect for me is his percussion which both stabilise and propel the collaboration. By the time I reached the half way point in the second track that percussion had been essentially buried. The promise of the title bore fruit. It is a torrent … a hurricane of noise – this time anchored by a tense, tonal undercurrent. As track 3 starts the sounds morph again and what is essentially released is very ugly indeed – like tar being flooded with electricity.

The two disparate elements that Menche and Karkwoski bring to the collaboration is what creates this very fine record. I think Unleash is a pretty essential record but seems to have been ignored in noise circles. Neither artist is particularly trendy in a noise sense but ignore this record to your detriment. Brutal and compelling.

One Response to “Zbigniew Karkowski and Daniel Menche – Unleash (Alien 8) 2008”

  1. Hey Dave!
    I must suggest to you one of the most brutal and insane musical projects out there, discovered yesterday: Gnaw Their Tongues! Ultra-morbid and noisy as a corpse-fuck during armageddon! My mind totally blew… Check it out.

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