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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

NOTHING BUT NOISE: Existence Oscillation Past (2016)

Updated: Aug 29, 2019

“Existence Oscillation Past offers an album that will please for sure to lovers of sounds, of sequences and of structures evolving in a din which is enjoyable to discover”

1 レプリカ 12:30 2 Manoeuvres Mécaniques 8:39 3 Monochrome Deux 5:43 4 eXistence Oscillation 15:34 5 Dust 6:32

(CD/DDL 49:00) (V.F.)

(Ambient, Berlin-School, Experimental)

I was blown out by my discovery of Nothing But Noise and their latest album Existence Oscillation (Possible) Future. The Belgian label Wool-O-Tapes had sent me the trilogy, but I had to first chronicle the last releases in EM before tackling the foundation of the dystonic music of Daniel Bressanutti and Dirk Bergen. EXISTENCE OSCILLATION PAST is the second album of this duet resulting from the rupture of Front 242. It's also the gateway of a most creative sound trilogy where the Berlin School genre is exploited with a musical vision that exceeds the boundaries of experimental music.

A tide of keen pulsations doesn't waste time to put our ears in appetite, especially for the aficionados of sequences. The sequencer multiplies its lines of rhythms with adroitly inserted keys which end up to create a fascinating symbiosis. But we generally lose the rhythmic thread of レ プ リ カ with other additions of sequences. If a pulsating line guides an oscillating structure nourished mainly by bass sequences, other rhythmic filaments come and go with lively and jerky gusts that momentarily jostle a rhythm that is always vivid and limp slightly in it's heavy rhythmic cloak. Percussive effects, ingenious percussion effects by the way, and hail of sequences add to this mass of bounding sequences, giving a laboratory experimentation approach to this structure constantly nibbling by its multiple rhythmic tadpoles. Harmonies? There are few. Electronic effects of a developing video game act also like sequences and percussion. They fly over and peck レ プ リ カ while being more musical, especially with good orchestrations, when the music is of a relative tranquility which allows レ プ リ カ to have a more affordable approach. Mechanical Maneuvers is a dark title with stressful ambiences of a dark horror movie. The rhythm is repetitive with an ostentino action knotted by good orchestrations and deaf pulsations. These two elements plough a gloomy intensity and support a herd of electronic effects (I love this impression that a terrifying beast pretends to snore) that give even more depth to one of the most distressing structures that I've heard since a long time. A real horror movie music!

Take the bass line in the introduction of Pink Floyd's One of These Days and you have the rhythmic structure of Monochrome Two. Muffled knockings are weighting down the rhythmic fluidity on what is the more musical structure in EXISTENCE OSCILLATION PAST. In addition to the oscillating decorating loops, synth pads fly with violin wings while others adopt a more rhythmic ostentino form. The envelope shows a slightly dramatic presence with somewhat dark velvets that overflow the harmonic skirt of Monochrome Two. We always stay in these glaucous moods with the introductive knocks in the opening of eXistence Oscillation. These knocks come from various oscillatory effects that spin into hypnotic tendrils while gradually adding various rhythmic imperfections, always so attractive by the way. The movement gradually intensified with percussions whose progressive shelling ended up bludgeoning a rhythm and ambiances structured by these ascending sequences in Berlin School mode. An ambiospheric phase divides a rhythmic progression always overflowing with its oscillating effects around the 7th minute. Gyratory and Spirograph effects make up the ambiences where the silence tries to take back some rights in a mini festival of sound effects. The rhythmic rebirth is in pain and in a cacophonous way with very Jean-Michel Jarre percussive effects, noisy reverberant effects and synth lavas that break up into long misshapen filaments. This is the antechamber of noises. Nothing but noises! Dust finishes this rather attractive first chapter of Nothing But Noise's oscillating structures with a more ambient one knotted in gradations at the level of sound intensity. A music of ambiances for a film like the birth of Transformer! Apart from the second half of eXistence Oscillation, EXISTENCE OSCILLATION PAST offers an album that will please to lovers of sounds, of sequences and of structures evolving in a din which is enjoyable to discover. There is as much frenzy in this album as sugar in a Coke! But I must admit that being charmed ay first by the boundless boundaries of Existence Oscillation (Possible) Future greatly facilitates the exploration of an album with some uncomfortable tints and whose early beginnings of conception find more their answers in the sequel and the third part of this trilogy which gets better with each album. I know to have experienced it! Sylvain Lupari (September 17th, 2018) ***½**

Available at Nothing But Noise Bandcamp

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