VITAL WEEKLY (The Netherlands)
PANICSVILLE/FRANKIE & THE S.E.M.M. - STUNTS/BRAIN IN THE CAT (LP by Nihilist/TQR&R)
Quite a heavy bunch of stuff here. There is a split LP, a bonus CD-R with remixes/reworkings of each other and a MP3 with the source material for the side by Frankie & The S.E.M.M. That source material was recorded at 'the luxurious hotel Auburn in San Francisco Soma district', which apparently isn't the nicest neighborhood in town. In 1999, in the middle of the night two guys start an argument, which explodes in a lot of 'fuck you' and the word 'stunt' can be picked up. Frankie & The S.E.M.M. add lofi synthesizer or suppressed feedback to the material. I actually enjoyed hearing it as I thought it was hilarous (though I am glad not have been present that night), but I am not sure if its the kind of stuff I would play a lot. I can imagine this to be a great side for unaware guests. The Panicsville side has three pieces that were originally released as a cassette, and an unreleased piece. Its been a while that we associated Panicsville with pure noise and that is also not the case here.
Even when the cassettes from 2005, this material already forecasts his interest in musique concrete and analogue synths and these four pieces are quite nice experimental music pieces. Roughly shaped musique concrete mixed with likewise rough edges of cosmic music.
Panicsville rework Frankie into a silly 'dance' piece with those obscured sounds from the sources, which is actually quite nice. And silly. In return Frankie deconstructs Panicsville into 96 small pieces of sound, which sound actually like one piece, being cut into 96 tracks, but I'm sure were are supposed to play this in a random order. The material is even more low graded resolution than the original. Nice, but a bit long - almost fifty minutes. The source stuff is nice too, but perhaps to listen once or use in your DJ mix. (FdW)
Panicsville serves up three tracks of torturous chain pulling and bagpipe war marches to organic analog synthesizer compositions. Their side is rounded out by a remix of AOSUKE (Germany). New cover artwork by A.Ortmann from the original release. As for the flip side, Frankie hails from Detroit and presents a hailstorm of synthesizer frequencies that set the tone for some drug addled violence.
Co-released with Top Quality Rock and Roll. 300 copies pressed on transparent blue vinyl with inserts.
Also has bonus CD-r of artists remixing each others material (99 tracks in all).
From Cassette Gods blog from the original cassette release Feb. 4, 2008.
"Panicsville's "Brain in the Cat" (probably a description of the album cover, which is as disgusting as you might think) could easily stand as an album in itself and is as diverse a work as anything Ortmann has released. "Gates of Hell" begins with a slow ambience but is quickly consumed by off-kilter junk rhythm loops, bagpipes (!) and greasy tape canoodling. "Horsemen's Club," "Pregnant At Birth" and the title track follow with similar collage techniques, rarely still but executed with great timing. Ortmann has a hundred methods of creating sound and enough bizarro ideas to match each one. Gurgling analog bubbles, tape decay, disorienting stereo effects, abused samples, harsh circuit-blowing cacophony- it's all there, like a gearhead's personal mixtape or a symphony for ADD degenerates. The superb mastering reveals every nauseating detail."