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|20 December 2016||
Sone Urbia - Theros
Greek label Lower Parts launch Helikon—their new, limited-vinyl-only sublabel with a release titled Theros—a two-tracker made up of untitled, improvised live recordings dating back to 2012 and 2013, credited to an upcoming Greek duo Sone Urbia.
Side A, and it's not long before ferocious kick drums barrel into the minimalist, ambient-industrial noise and howling drones—which could have easily been processed field recordings—belying their hard, flattened sound, and underpinned throughout by a low-level, woody percussion that leans toward a tribal aesthetic. Punishing as it is, the first piece retains a quality of wide, open spaces, bringing to mind a vast, strip mining operation: exploding mineral ore, sounds of rocks smashing against rocks, the rumble of huge, earth-moving machinery and metallic hats that scrape and hack through the thickened, smoggy atmosphere. Ultimately, calmness descends the earth—now bare, stripped of its wealth, alone and empty, aside from returning, howling drones.
On to the B side next and this is a quite different animal which would best be described as a busy and hectic sound collage, having no real percussive element, but still not lacking any of the intensity we found on the A side: rumbling industrial noise, glitchy electronic blips that mimic processed found sounds of dripping water, chattering voices, and even cries of an infant. Working together to form what is at times an unsettling listen, all of these elements are eventually unified and then suppressed by an intensifying gothic ambiance, before an organ potently breaks out through the rhythmic noise, painting a striking image of a church service being held in spite of an earthquake.
Presented on this record are perhaps some of the most interesting uses of field recordings I've come across, arresting and affecting it certainly is, a noise piece like no other. I really hope that this isn't the last time we hear from this mysterious Greek duo.
Words by b.yond.
Release Type: EP
Release Date: 20 December 2016
Release Format: Vinyl
Record Label • Catalog: Helikon • HELIKON01