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|08 February 2018||
Tomohiko Sagae - Deba Bōchō
Tomohiko Sagae has been rather busy lately. Not a year after presenting his first album on Hands, the diligent Japanese techno and noise specialist already has two EPs to treat us with, and the one we're looking at this time is Deba Bōchō—a second notch in a catalog of a promising, cassette-ready imprint from Amsterdam that launched in September of 2017 with a strong VA featuring a compelling list of highly sought-after underground producers.
When it comes to destructive and nihilistic music, what other genre is there that suits such description better than HNW? Japanoise in particular seems to fit the bill particularly well, and as one would expect, DB#1 is a sterling representative of this subgenre—rough, dense, and unforgivable, precisely what you'd want to forcibly impose on complacent, hipster-looking wimps listening to whatever upchuck is on that week's global top 10 through their overpriced, apple-branded earbuds. Coming back to what has long since become Sagae's signature sound, the following number gives speakers a ferocious beatdown at 107 BPM, executed by kicks at double speed which only ever stop for brief moments of relief, which really isn't that much less stressful thanks to disconcerting whispers superimposed against—and drowning in—toxically sizzling noise with floating distortion levels; if you didn't get ringing in your ears upon reaching DB#2's cathartic conclusion, you are more than welcome to the keep testing the limits of that property further—it's only the beginning! Evidently aiming to one-up the original on the scale of abrasive sounding, IOD-owners Operant elevate the amount of distortion to abnormal heights, raise the tempo all the way to 142 BPM and make use of heavily filtered and punk-reminiscent screams, thereby converting DB#2 into an EBM piece for exceptionally twisted individuals who would ostensibly have to breakfast with nails just to keep that part of their personality on a level with their musical preferences. Apropos of grim reaper's arrival to a massive and death-rich castle siege on a night of full moon, DB#3 demonstrates unreserved ruthlessness in regards to the intensity of sound: virtually breakless and genuinely epic in scale, it is the kind of work that is capable of challenging even the most seasoned and stoic harsh noise fanatics with every element in it—from the relentless and unsparing 4/4 kicks up to the metallically clanging hats, crafted in a forge of the damned; there truly aren't many electronic artists who are willing to take their production this far and make it sound that good. As if the EP wasn't past its selling point, half of Talker a.k.a. Stave joins in on the action to offer his perspective on the previous composition, and while remaining at 133 BPM, his contribution can hardly be called a remix—rather, it's a bewildering, progressive work of imaginative post-techno that superimposes majestic ambiances and reverberated, stringy stabs against peculiar layers of drums arranged to resemble salvos executed with different types of weapons; echoing kicks, for instance, resound carpet bombs landing asunder and tremoring the ground with spreading shockwaves, whereas the neatly fractured, low-range-boosted bassline parallels to more of a futurist volley, continuously fired in close proximity with a blaster type of firearm.
Needless to say, if you somehow weren't immediately attracted to this release based on the line-up alone, the tracks will do this job instead, and with the kind of inordinate, double-tap onset Strange Therapy has now had, it's hard to imagine the label not flashing bright red on a radar of every industrial clique's deviant member within an internet's radius.
Words by rhetor.
Release Type: EP
Release Date: 8 February 2018
Release Format: Digital • Cassette
Record Label • Catalog: Strange Therapy • ST002
Purchase Links: Bandcamp