Merzbow : S/D

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Have at it!

Gemini Ford (Rahul Kamath), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 16:33 (seventeen years ago) link

Search: 'Spiral Honey' - gd all-round horrible noise-fest, one of thousands. Also: that remix alb on Blast First, which has a pretty gd discog included - Merzbow remixed by B. Gunter is a fine conceptual joke, but an ever better rec. The two Merzbow originals on that comp are real good'uns, too. 'Rectal Anarchy' (w/Gore Beyond Necropsy) - for the track titles alone. 'Horn of the Goat' (w/ Consumer Electronics) - slightly diff flavah/style to the usual skreeeeeeeee

Destroy: I'm not so keen on the proggy/fusiony (these terms are relative obv) stuff that he was churning out a few years back.

Anyone wanna burn me off a copy of the Merzbox?

Andrew L (Andrew L), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 17:11 (seventeen years ago) link

So, there are definite progressions and styles that vary from album to album? I know that may be a dumb question, but somehow I imagined it all to sound like the same white noise album to album.

Gemini Ford (Rahul Kamath), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 17:25 (seventeen years ago) link

Well within the basic Merz style there are loads of minor stylistic variations, and constant changes of detail/emphasis/focus. I know certain purists only really dig the 'early', pre-CD Merzbow, and in the last couple of years he's gone digital (I think - not really up on the tech stuff) which does make a diff to the sound. But in a blindfold test, yes, even the most dedicated fan wld probably struggle to identify any particular track/album/era - but then the same is true of lots of acts who arrive at a sound/method and then spend the rest of their careers refining/messing w/ it.

Andrew L (Andrew L), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 17:46 (seventeen years ago) link

Depend what you're looking for... Merzbow covering sex, Satan, or food, right? I've been listening to his Music for Bondage performances, and while still incredibly noisy, there's a surprising sense of pulsation and rhythm to some of the tracks. Also, the epic 30 minute "Bondage for Satomi Fuji" is actually quite understated with an emphasis on dread and impending doom rather than the blitz of doom itself. His recent "cuisine" album A Taste of Merzbow is not essential or anything but it has more in the mix (drum samples and things) than his "purer" works like Pulse Demon.

Honda, Wednesday, 25 September 2002 17:49 (seventeen years ago) link

talked to a guy who has loads of merzbow (he put money down for merzbox but they kept delaying it so when he started running out of money he backed out: last time he emailed me he got a bossa nova box set heh which is great to hear) and he told me the early stuff is pretty much industrial collage type stuff and then he went from that to all out noise groove assault and now he has indeed digital as he told the wire when he made the cover.

he also told me its his best gig evah with masonna so that's obv something to do before you go to yr grave.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 18:10 (seventeen years ago) link

have heard just one track on a fat cat compilation and that was fkn marvellous!

''Anyone wanna burn me off a copy of the Merzbox?''

yeah can someone do this please...

''I've been listening to his Music for Bondage performances''

did anyone see the C4 'documentary' on jap bondage on monday night.

also hasn't akita written a book on bondage?

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 18:14 (seventeen years ago) link

Go at it in chronological order.
I really liked akasha gulva and space metallizer and when I got
aqua necromancer it was quite an interesting cognitive drive; the drum samples add nothing to nothing but it is still a "trauma". This album got brillant peeks of Glory.

The Hegemon, Wednesday, 25 September 2002 18:20 (seventeen years ago) link

search: sleeper awakes on the edge of the abyss (w/ c heemann). bastard noise i quite liked too.

destroy: his live set in rough trade (w/ russell haswell?) a few years ago was just dull.

toby (tsg20), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 18:58 (seventeen years ago) link

"rainbow electronics." that's my stock answer and i'm sticking to it.

i've heard about 13 discs from the merzbox, mostly the early stuff which is generally REAL good. between 15-20 there's some amazingly well done, minimal junk/tape music that beats the more known releases from his early period ("antimonument," "age of 369/chant 2") cold.

also, i like-like-like "vibractance" because it's just ems and it has those dynamics things.

your null fame (yournullfame), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 20:56 (seventeen years ago) link

"Hard Lovin' Man" has a pretty cover.
Did anyone ever buy the wrecked up car with the edidtion of 1 CD inside the player?

brg30 (brg30), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 21:28 (seventeen years ago) link

the thing about "hard lovin' man" (and most of the laptoppy stuff i've heard) is that it just isn't that interesting. most of it is far too loopy and has crappy digital distortion.

i'd rather listen to deep purple's original, because it KICKS FUCKING ASS. and merzbow's deconstruction of it does not.

your null fame (yournullfame), Wednesday, 25 September 2002 22:03 (seventeen years ago) link

recent release "collapse 4 floors" (or whatever it's called) on OHM label is best i've heard of his laptop style (didn't like"amlux" as much) big trip into space - more variety in texture, reverb, & tension / release dynamics. I think my othere favourite is also on OHM, too being the more analogue "new takamngbura" (or whatever it's called) - almost tuneful for merzy (although not in a "harmonically overdriven" / "nice" way like "amlux") new mego one io thot was ok but not mega super. "door open at 8am" on alien8 (his free jazz tribute album) is frickin marvellous - you can hear that he's just messing w/ tapes & machines in his room, but it takes you to outer space & back. DOES ANYONE ELSE ALWAYS IMAGINE THEY ARE IN A FLASH GORDON STYLE ROCKET SHIP EVERY TIME THEY LISTEN TO MERZBOW? I DO.

bob snoom, Tuesday, 1 October 2002 09:49 (seventeen years ago) link

Yoo-hoo! Over here!

Out of all of the Merzbox I've heard so far, I'd say Cloud Cock OO Grand is the best because...there's just so much STUFF in it. The sample-based things like Agni Hotra and the Pornoise series are also real good because they're almost identifiably rock and hence easier to grasp. What I've heard of the last couple albums in the set will probably also turn out to favorites: they're so luxuriantly textural. Non-Merzbox-wise, I'd say the recent Dharma is my favorite. The last track is so DREAMY.

I prefer his drones over his scratchy white-noise oversaturation, his loops to his idiot-avant instrumentalisms, his synthwork over his guitar-work. I also prefer it when he composes via lap-top rather than by quasi-improvisation (he shirks from the word "improvisation," preferring "automatism" which I think roughly means making noise in a state of no-mind). It's less willful and random, and easier to get a handle on.

Michael Daddino (epicharmus), Tuesday, 1 October 2002 10:31 (seventeen years ago) link

one year passes...
mike: did 'cloud...' turn out to be yr fave. got a top 3 from merzbox (if you can remember, that is)? anybody else?

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Thursday, 10 June 2004 15:07 (fifteen years ago) link


This shit is amazing

HAMBURGER NEURON GROUP (ex machina), Thursday, 10 June 2004 15:10 (fifteen years ago) link

I actually haven't heard Cloud since the Merzbox experiment. I suppose I could listen to it today to see if it stands up, as I think I have a CD-R of it somewhere at work. Other recent releases I've enjoyed: Frog (maelstrom), Tamago (soundtrack-y sludge), Amlux (clinical slow-builds).

I also heartily applaud his current fascination with animal welfare and consequently animal sounds (Tamago uses recordings of his pet chickens!) only because, well, to be corny, it humanizes him somewhat.

Michael Daddino (epicharmus), Thursday, 10 June 2004 15:59 (fifteen years ago) link

Also the last Merzbox CD, the skree electronic shit-storm of Annihiloscilator impressed me very much. But Dharma is my all-time favorite: the last track is like an endless cycle of airplanes taking off and landing.

Michael Daddino (epicharmus), Thursday, 10 June 2004 16:05 (fifteen years ago) link

ok, if you got anything else to say on 'cloud...' then I'd like to hear it. thanks for the update.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Thursday, 10 June 2004 16:20 (fifteen years ago) link

S.C.U.M.; Rainbow Electronics; Storage; Cloud Cock OO Grand
Continuum(collaboration w/Kapotte Muziek)
S.B.O.T.H.I./M'bow split
collaboration with John Watermann(forget name)
Horn Of The Goat

He's been at it for a while...

Stephen Boyle (SBoyle), Thursday, 10 June 2004 16:56 (fifteen years ago) link

what's the SMEGMA stuff like?

HAMBURGER NEURON GROUP (ex machina), Thursday, 10 June 2004 16:56 (fifteen years ago) link

Merzbow plays with Smegma's sounds, Smegma plays with M'bow's sounds.
Tracks are immediately recognizable as one or the other. I prefer Smegma's track--a little more organic, spontaneous, junky, etc. It was released as a picture disc and cd on Tim Kerr records, out of Portland, OR.--distributed by POLYGRAM! I think the label went under, don't know about availability...would also recommend Runzelstirn & Merzbow & Due Process & Gurgelstock--a RRRelease from the late '80's.

Stephen Boyle (SBoyle), Friday, 11 June 2004 16:50 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah Tim Kerr is dead. Thor who ran it was a scumbag who ripped off the artists.

jack cole (jackcole), Friday, 11 June 2004 16:52 (fifteen years ago) link

Jesus, Jack. When I first read your post I was like, Tim Kerr is dead?!

Broheems (diamond), Friday, 11 June 2004 17:07 (fifteen years ago) link

five months pass...
AMG has "1930" as their Merzbow pick.
Should I get that or are they stupid?

Hi, I am a genius. a big one. (AaronHz), Saturday, 13 November 2004 01:02 (fifteen years ago) link

I've enjoyed that the times I've listened to it but I don't know his stuff enough to say how that ranks in his whole catalogue. One distinctive thing about it is you get that posh perfectly clear 'classical'-style Tzadik production.

What I want to know is what you guys think of this year's Kim Cascone. It took me a while to really get into it but then I started to appreciate its sprawling, meandering quality with moments of beauty.

sundar subramanian (sundar), Saturday, 13 November 2004 01:10 (fifteen years ago) link

i don't know why i didn't mention it previous but i think my all time fave merzbow is all in the juxtaposition being the split cd with ladybird (or is ladybird the label?) anyhow it's a left channel / right channel stereo split and labybird (?) being a japanese(?)/ german(?) candyfloss covers band it's quite a trip - and you could swear akita is doing real time processing or at least listening to ladybird(?) all the way through. and merzbeat is great.

bob snoom, Tuesday, 16 November 2004 12:11 (fifteen years ago) link

must second the split CD with ladybird -- it is a bit cheesy, but delightfully so. the noize also does a pretty good job of covering up the fact that the singing is pretty naff. the cover of shirley & co's "shame shame shame" had my bf congo dancing around the room until I informed him that he was listening to merzbow.

+, Tuesday, 16 November 2004 15:40 (fifteen years ago) link

Batztoutai With Memorial Gadgets
Merzbow Loves Emil Beaulieau Loves Merzbow Loves...

Ian John50n (orion), Tuesday, 16 November 2004 17:57 (fifteen years ago) link

RRR is currently having a sale. You can get any of the following releases for $5+shipping (shipping is like $2 first item and $0.20 each additional, I think)...

Batztoutai/Loop Panic dbl CD
Merzbow Loves Emil Beaulieau CD
Pornoise CD

So, ya know, for like eightteen bucks you can get some good merz. jams. I would recommend it. RRRon deserves your money as much as just about anyone.

Ian John50n (orion), Tuesday, 16 November 2004 18:07 (fifteen years ago) link

five months pass...
Which Merzbow is pretty?
>Which Merzbow is pretty?

Dharma. Also Animal Magnetism (love the chickens).

pdf (Phil Freeman), Tuesday, 3 May 2005 17:41 (fourteen years ago) link

sleeper wakes on the edge of the abyss by Merzbow & Christoph Heemann, though it's more a Heemann piece made from Merzbow sounds

I don't think I've made it all the way through any Merzbow album even once.

milton parker (Jon L), Tuesday, 3 May 2005 17:54 (fourteen years ago) link

The stuff I've heard from Music For Bondage Performance might be considered conventionally pretty. To be honest, it can all be pretty depending on volume/mood/situation.

Failin Huxley (noodle vague), Tuesday, 3 May 2005 18:05 (fourteen years ago) link

three years pass...

More opinions, please!

stephen, Saturday, 19 July 2008 23:14 (eleven years ago) link

listening to a recent one right now, feddyyellow mix.1. pretty nice esp at the end where he got some "basic spectral sonic decantation" thing going on

Sébastien, Sunday, 20 July 2008 02:41 (eleven years ago) link

I've mentioned this on a couple other threads, but the FIMAV album with Pan Sonic is fantastic.

Rock Hardy, Sunday, 20 July 2008 03:40 (eleven years ago) link

that remix CD alluded to above (Scumtron) really is quite good. I also have soft spots for the Batz-Tou-Tai double on RRR (early clank/scrape), Pinkream (heavy analog noiz), the Music For Bondage Performance discs (quiet, very different), and the collaboration with Christoph Heeman.

sleeve, Sunday, 20 July 2008 03:53 (eleven years ago) link

hahaha i just did the rolex sweep to paralysis (hypnopompic mix satori so whacki

Sébastien, Sunday, 20 July 2008 06:33 (eleven years ago) link

ooh also search the Frog LP, most excellent.

sleeve, Monday, 21 July 2008 20:12 (eleven years ago) link

I recommended Merzdub with Jamie Saft on another thread, it really is a pretty channelling of the Merzbow noise along more "musical" routes. All the electro-acoustic stuff I've heard from the Merzbox has been nice too.

Noodle Vague, Monday, 21 July 2008 20:20 (eleven years ago) link

picked up tonight:


in the mail:

Synth Destruction (w/ Carlos Giffoni)
Electric Dress (w/ Carlos Giffoni & Jim O'Rourke)
Live Destruction at No Fun 2007

the only Merzbow stuff i'm familiar with is his work with Boris -- Megatone, Sun Baked Snow Cave, Rock Dream -- so i figured a good approach would be to check out a couple of his more 'acclaimed' albums, plus some of his work with Giffoni and O'Rourke, both of whom i'm already pretty familiar with.

... any thoughts?

stephen, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 04:01 (eleven years ago) link

i have this v pretty merzbird shirt btw:

wilter, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 04:04 (eleven years ago) link

wow that album-by-album Merzbox review of Michael's upthread is most impressive.

sleeve, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 04:15 (eleven years ago) link

Anyone read the Merzbook?

I have it, but haven't checked it out.

wilter, Tuesday, 29 July 2008 04:45 (eleven years ago) link

so... no thoughts, then.

stephen, Thursday, 31 July 2008 03:23 (eleven years ago) link

i think you should read the thread, dude.

GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ, Thursday, 31 July 2008 03:44 (eleven years ago) link

i think i've already read the entire thread, dude.

i was looking for some opinions that maybe weren't 4 years old. not that those are necessarily bad ones upthread, but maybe some of the newer posters here can offer some of their comments too. just a thought.

stephen, Thursday, 31 July 2008 05:07 (eleven years ago) link

five months pass...

Welcome to 2009!
Important is starting off the new year with the beginning of our 13 Month/13 CD Merzbow series titled 13 Japanese Birds. Available to hold your 13 CD set is a deluxe screen printed, numbered, limited edition hand built bamboo box. More info about how to order it can be found here:

ilxor, Wednesday, 28 January 2009 05:04 (ten years ago) link

I need $300 for the version with a painting by Masami.

krakow, Wednesday, 28 January 2009 07:56 (ten years ago) link

How's the album with Richard Pinhas?

_Rockist__Scientist_, Wednesday, 28 January 2009 21:26 (ten years ago) link

I need $300 for the version with a painting by Masami.

I shelled out for it the other night, whilst drinking. Oh boy...

ilxor, Thursday, 29 January 2009 04:29 (ten years ago) link

Ouch. I've resigned myself to not getting it.

krakow, Thursday, 29 January 2009 09:41 (ten years ago) link

two years pass...

Out of all of the Merzbox I've heard so far, I'd say Cloud Cock OO Grand is the best because...there's just so much STUFF in it.

Daddino was so right about Cloud... I listened to this last night looking for fucking catharsis after a bad-ish evening (to the extent that I knew it ws going to be before it happened; I unconciously left the CDR on top of the speaker just before I left), and all I found was DETAILS that ate away at you. People tend to dismiss him as junior Metal Machine Music. Although I'm sure it can lapse into that it does not here, not that -- (i) it should be necessarily a bad thing, and (ii) doesn't that give everyone an excuse to not bother sampling the huge catalogue: listening to music should never feel like work and yet its a strange reaction, to excuse yourself of what should never be a duty. I suddenly remembered a Lou Reed interview w/Lester Bangs where he talks about MMM having bits of Beethoven and Xenakis -- he ws joking (or ws he?) but here its like I hear all sorts of music, processed and yet retaining enough of a character to make an impression. I forgot to cut the sound of the TV completely off and a gap of silence (one track to the next) became what I thought was a sample of Will Smith in Fresh Prince of Bel Air!!

xyzzzz__, Thursday, 3 November 2011 06:14 (eight years ago) link

ten months pass...

Another Merzbow Records "It compiles tracks from various other compilations and splits from 1991–2001, most of which are out of print". That fact puts me in a good mindset, makes me feel I'm covering a lot of Merzbow when I'm not and never will. This is another fact.

I actually went to get this because it compiled Ab Hunter, the first one of his I fell in love with (yes, there is room for love in Merzbow's world. This is a fact.) and I'm finding all sorts of joy -- pounding dance bits, metal, burstings of lava hot swooshes, wind machines turned up to 11000 (never mnd 11!) even the odd quiet moment dropped in!

This must be good to meditate to. This is another fact.

xyzzzz__, Sunday, 9 September 2012 09:48 (seven years ago) link

collabo with Mats Gustafsson out in Nov

my father will guide me up the stairs to bed (anagram), Sunday, 9 September 2012 10:24 (seven years ago) link

four years pass...

Robert Adam Gilmour, Saturday, 12 August 2017 19:23 (two years ago) link

ten months pass...


— 🐖🐐🐓Merzbow🐄🐏🦃 (@MerzbowOfficial) June 9, 2018

xyzzzz__, Tuesday, 12 June 2018 20:25 (one year ago) link

ten months pass...

Strange days. There's this Merzcast podcast thing wherein two US dudes talk about selected Merzbow albums with various guests. They only play tiny clips of the music. They also have a Patreon account wherein subscribers can access further podcasts, although these don't feature any of the music either. In the last few days Merzbow, or his earthly representative, has made clear his disapproval of the project and now they are plastering "Merzbow Disapproved" all over the podcasts (they haven't stopped doing them or taken them down AFAIK).

the word dog doesn't bark (anagram), Monday, 6 May 2019 15:49 (six months ago) link

I approve. People should listen to more (unfiltered) Merzbow and less podcasts.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Monday, 6 May 2019 15:51 (six months ago) link

But don't you think listening to podcasts might make people listen to more Merzbow?

the word dog doesn't bark (anagram), Monday, 6 May 2019 15:52 (six months ago) link

he "disapproved" after 3 months prior posting a link to said podcast

sarahell, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:00 (six months ago) link

promoting it ... and ostensibly ... approving it?

also dude can't take a joke

sarahell, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:00 (six months ago) link

He's been shutting down online fan talk for at least 5 years:

He's admittedly not heard Merzcast but took offense to GX Juppiter-Larsen's anecdote of touring porn shops together in Holland.

Yelploaf, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:34 (six months ago) link

lol he was like, "my work isn't about that now." it's pretty much, control freak, stop you are embarrassing meeee tantrum ... someone posted a mock-up of a "merzbow-disapproved" t-shirt and he blocked them

sarahell, Monday, 6 May 2019 16:38 (six months ago) link

three months pass...

enjoying this new semi-ambient joint with Vanity Productions this morning.

calzino, Sunday, 11 August 2019 09:42 (three months ago) link

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