I always find it interesting when an artist I’m quite familiar with begins a collaboration with one I’m totally unfamiliar with. Urna I’ve known for some time, and even had the pleasure of sharing a label imprint with in Quartier23. Gianluca Martucci‘s work is well known, well-respected, and runs the gamut from neo-classical to drone, with a lot of variation in between. From collaborative releases as Sagenhaft, solo albums as Urna , and various other works over the years, he has set himself as a standard in the post-industrial music scene. It is, then, no surprise to find him once again venturing into new territory, this time choosing to collaborate with the Italian project Le Cose Bianche, also known as L.C.B.
Beginning aural life in 2008, L.C.B. was founded on the mantra that life is here to be lost. He produces music and sound in this vein, seeking to push the lower boundaries of darkness and murky fatalism. From the artist:
“His consciousness of his creations, that he consider nothing groundbreaking, saves him from falling into pettiness, banality and pomposity. Le Cose Bianche is The Man, with his languages, his shifts and cracks, his discomfort. With his curved behaviour and the whacked hopes. With his life, too. With his end, above all.
The melding of two distinct, yet totally separate styles is the key to this sort of collaborative effort. Each is certainly an important part of the whole, but the lines truly become blurred, with the outcome the only importance rendered to the listener. Surely, there is no pomp or useless vanity here. This is a darker, more hollow form of Dark Ambient / Power Electronics. It reminds a bit of Abandoned Shelter‘s early work, especially Suprema. There is a crushing urgency in the manic shuffling of chords, expressions, and atmospheres. Gianluca’s vocal incantations help to set a ritual, deathly cadence in several tracks, most noticeably “Diavolo Apocrifo” and “Un’Ombra Nell’Ombra“.
The entire album reeks of death, destruction, and sex. Yes, sex. This work has a certain dark sexual energy attached to its very core, something I noticed on the very first listen. Like the record played during the detective’s hunt for the monster Machine in the movie 8MM, this work gives haunting reference to unspeakable atrocities, such acts that pleasure one while subjugating the other. The pain felt is nearly palpable, drawing the listener into the shadows within the Shadow, as track 8 so effortlessly describes in the title. The fear of the dark is well expressed here, and one can only imagine what this work may be a soundtrack to. As stated in the release itself: “Evil is real, and is Human“.
The music itself, as stated, is a mixture of drone, dark ambient. industrial, power electronics, and glitch. The mastering technique employed, especially on the later tracks, evokes the feeling of imperfection and human failure that this album thrives on. Sounds disappear as fast as they reappear, drowning each other as they compliment the collective. Though the tracks are very different one to the next, they work so very well together to tell the tale of the completed work. Sometimes brutally harsh, other times purely beautiful, the sounds used are as stark as they are filling. Somewhere between Desiderii Marginis, Ouroboros, and Abandoned Shelter, this collaboration finds its way to our darkest fears, and to the bleakest corners of our very souls.
Written by Asche