Going back to the mid-90's, the obscure Austin, TX outfit Korperschwache (German for "organic decay") has issued a steady stream of releases into the deep underground that showcased a distinctive sound sitting at the strange nexus between the early UK noise rock scene, the skull-rupturing power of Japan's more extremist noise artists, the massive gravitational pull of the formless guitar crush of bands like Earth and the Melvins at their most art-damaged, and, in more recent years, a filthy, blackened, low-fidelity underbelly that hints at the mutated black metal of bands like Abruptum, Necrofrost, and Vondur. From the beginning, Korperschwache has consisted of mastermind RKF on guitar, noise and vocals, assisted by the loyal mechanical timekeeping of Doktor Omega and occasionally joined by outside contributors. Korperschwache first took form as a side project of RKF's droning industrial rock band Autodidact, but became a primary concern soon thereafter, releasing a steady stream of releases over the years on cassette, Cd-r and digital download on labels like Peasant Magik, Inam Records, Colony, Dark Winter Moon, Public Guilt, Cut Hands and our own sub-label Crucial Bliss, to name a few, usually in extremely limited editions made available to the band's small but loyal cult of followers. The majorioty of these older releases have long been out of print, especially the extremely limited cassette releases from the early days of the band; a longtime Korperschwache fan, I myself never had an opportunity to get my hands on those early tapes, which featured some of Korper's harshest noise-based material.
Now, in conjunction with the brand new Korperschwache album Evil Walks that has just come out on Crucial Blast, we've assembled a series of reissues of early Korperschwache releases, some of which have never been heard by anyone outside of the band's immediate circle. The early cassette releases that have been excavated here are very different from Korperschwache's newer Loop-meets-Abruptum industrial blackpsych sound, many centering around brutal, high-volume noise assaults heavily influenced by both classic UK power electronics (Whitehouse, Ramleh, etc) and Japanese harsh noise (Merzbow, Masonna, Incapacitants, Contagious Orgasm). The later releases from this period began to creep into more guitar-focused dronepower and hypnotic amplifier bludgeon, with material like that of Night Country Fog (Korperschwache's previously unreleased collaboration with Smolken of Polish avant black metal/doom folk band Dead Raven Choir) beginning to direct the sound into the often melodic, always twisted psychedelic heaviness of it's current incarnation.
The 1996 cassette Blood Everywhere moves into more regions of harsh noise, but with masses of blasted, blackened activity lurking underneath of each track. "Castration on the installment plan" blends vicious black noise with what sound like ultra-distorted vokills and crumbling walls of blown out distortion and ultra distorted drums into a hellish blast that almost sounds like something from Canadian blacknoise band WOLD. This half hour epic rips through blurts of fractured guitar with hints of melody glinting through the brutally overdriven mass of noise, then settles into a strange woozy industrial driftscape with swells of wavering metallic feedback and hiss and crackle, a rhythmic pulse lost in the swirling sound, then builds slowly into a bulldozing wall of distortion and juddering engine noise while strange animalistic howls and roaring drift up to the surface. The second track "Godfucked" is of similar length but gets even noisier, starting with warped melodic noise, chirping feedback over ultra distorted guitar rumble and earthshaking bass frequencies that resembles the likes of Incapacitants or Government Alpha. The closing deathvision "Maggots feeding at the bottom of the deathpile" is an awesome fusion of overmodulated synth arpeggios and blackened noise that's structured into a menacing futuristic groove, and suggests what Merzbow might have produced if Masami Akita has been commissioned to score The Terminator. ultra heavy and apocalyptic, and one of my favorite Korper cassettes from the 90s.
released January 1, 2011
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