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Reviews
Dog - Hx. of Violencia
Tuesday, July 01 2008 @ 01:00 AM PDT
Contributed by: Vargr Wulf

Hx. of Violencia

Artist: Dog United States

Title: Hx. of Violencia

Label: Smell The Stench Australia

Genre:  Industrial Noise

01 Don’t Shoot Me Please
02 (Moment of Silencio) / More Silence

Dog, a California-based noise project, has presented us with their entry into the noise CDr field, “.hx of violencia.” It is, as you might be able to ascertain from the title, a particularly obscure entry, but rewarding as well. Dog's electronic sounds are in the early 80's industrial style, and the first track, titled “Don't Shoot Me Please,” seems to be a live recording in front of a small yet appreciative audience. Minimal electronics, synthesizer noise, and occasional dives into NON-like rhythmic industrial loops carry us through, and it is an enjoyable ride. This track maintains a remarkably engaging quality throughout the healthy 17 minutes of its duration. At times, anguished human vocals drift briefly in and out, adding a thankfully brief emotional element to the cold industrial environment. There are many rhythmic loops that drift in and out, and the attentive ear can find many very powerful and pleasing sounds. It would, however be nice to know more about the recording, where the show took place and so forth. Rather, the cryptic message “Recorded on Earth by Dog in 2008" is printed on the back. I am curious about what their other options were, and if they will be pursued in the future. There is a nice use of machine-gun fire samples toward the end of “Don’t Shoot Me Please,” which fits in thematically. This can also be of good use in fending off possible intruders, if played at a loud enough volume, which is a point in favor for this record. Practicality is key.

The second track is almost twice the length of the first, and contains an uneven initial 5 or 6 minutes of wandering drones and hisses, and then brings us in with a more solid “wall of noise” type of sound that defines the latter part of this collection. The improvisational nature of the piece becomes apparent about 11 or 12 minutes into the second track when the vocals kick in. The vocalist appears to be carrying on the mission of Genesis P-Orridge from Throbbing Gristle live circa 1980 - strange animal-like howls mixed with more emotional cries, processed through lots of delay and other effects. This eventually gives way to more noise and “instrument cable music” (the sound of things being plugged or unplugged, faulty wiring, and other malfunctions placed through many pedals). The quality of “instrument cable music” varies wildly depending on the performer, and Dog presents us with a tasteful take on the milieu. Toward the end, I had to remind myself that I was listening to this Dog CDr and not an actual TG live recording. The beats and eerie noises are all quite reminiscent of the early era of industrial music, with the imperfections and foibles that go with it.

The sound quality is very good, and has a genuinely warm quality to it that comes from the private nature of the recordings. The packaging consists of a yellow piece of paper with a very obscure and fuzzy pattern printed on it, along with the basic information presented in a very familiar font. It is rather hideous, in fact, and the music contained here was quite a surprise. You can hear a genuine enthusiasm for sound in Dog’s noise. Overall, this is a promising release (musically speaking) and I look forward to hearing future explorations from this group (who seem to have quite a discography already upon closer inspection). It lays strangely outside of time (for example, it sounds just as much like it came from 1983 as 2008), like the future primitive music of the early industrial artists. If this style interests you and you would like to hear it from these fellows, this CDr is not a bad place to start.

     



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