Thursday, February 1, 2018

Controlled Bleeding - “Carving Songs” 2xCD

Outer limits remixes 

A heavy-duty revisitation and reinterpretation of Bleeding’s “comeback” album of 2016, this expansive double-disc set opens with the new track, “TROD (Defiler’s Song)” — a wild and hardcore mesh of noisy thrash-edged rock (actually not far from the group’s old Skin Chamber project) with a more subtle electronic angle. It’s potent and downright frighteningly intense. The other tracks here, mostly remixes, alter the group’s diverse sounds into even more unique and unusual feels and sound-worlds.

Highlights of disc 1 include former Chain Reaction minimalists Monolake delayering/remixing “Carving Song” into their own austere rhythmic drum-loop style. “As Evening Implodes (Barnacles Remix)” brings a gentle and moody seaside strings vibe that serves as a pleasant interlude. The long-lost Renaldo & The Loaf take “As The Evening Fades” into a rich playground of exotica and, strangely,  animal sounds. JK Broadrick slices “Swarm” into a roomy, blackened, near-Godflesh slab, while the legendary Ramleh brings “As Evening Fades” into an opium den-soaked gauze of psychedelia. Rothko’s “Garage Dub” is a shoegazey wisp of ambient jazz, if that makes any sense, whereas ambient composer Tim Story remixes “Needle Evening” into a shimmery vapor-trip to finish off the disc.

Disc 2 begins with “Perks Pt 1 (Perv Mix)” — an amalgamation of grind/prog/metal/jazz that thunders along massively. Ron Anderson’s remix of “Carving Song” is a weirdly funky take, while Crowhurst’s remix of “A Loathing Supreme” is a terrifying free jazz/noise horror skronk. “Fusion Song (Le Syndicat Remix)” is a beautifully messy auto-crash of blistering electronic frequencies, lacerating post-dub beats, and overloaded effects (perhaps my favorite piece here) while Merzbow recalls Controlled Bleeding’s early years well with his abstract noise remix of “Perks Of Being A Perv”. 

Whereas many “remix albums” sound more like compilations (which they, by nature, are), Controlled Bleeding’s already vast musical terrain and the experimental tendencies of the remixers here make for a consistent and cohesive double-album that complements well the group’s uniquely visceral vision. This is not rock, nor jazz, or even industrial. Just call it Controlled Bleeding.