(New Album Review) Gareth Davis & Merzbow- Atsusaku

Atsusaku, off Amsterdam’s ever-engaging Moving Furniture Records, is a collaboration between experimentally-minded clarinetist Gareth Davis and noise legend Merzbow. What ensues is a far cry from the tremulous, slow-building ambience of Davis’s excellent work on documents like Grower and Gramercy, with Rutger Zuyderveldt and Frances-Marie Uitti, respectively. On this one, the guy had to practically shriek at the top of his lungs, pushing the limits of his instrument to be heard above the mangling sonic eruption that is Merzbow. Out of the garish, choking haze, one can see that a challenge was met for both parties, and that the result is a totally intriguing midway point between European free jazz and harsh noise. What more can I say– Merzbow probably released another album as I was typing this sentence, but you need check this one out first if you have any vested interest in free music of all stripes.

This viciously beautiful experiment, in which East and West team up to explore the aesthetics of ruin, will definitely go down as one of my favorite noise releases of the year.


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