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V/A – Revelation

V/A - Revelation

CD, Bugs Crawling Out Of People, 2004

Included on this self-described apocalyptic compilation of industrial sounds are fourteen artistic interpretations of a short story penned by Bugs Crawling Out of People founder Squid. The story itself (which this author will only refer to as “gruesome” and certainly “imaginative”) and accompanying original artwork are included in an extensive CD booklet. Depending upon how committed you are to fleshing out the concept behind this compilation, you may want to skip perusing the booklet’s contents entirely and focus on the music alone.
“Revelation” seems to be off to a strong start with Prospero’s “Through the Walls,” but the initial desolate, slow-building momentum of the introduction is unfortunately squandered in the somewhat impotent pieces that immediately follow. I feel as though the album’s progression as a whole is interrupted, not necessarily by the quality of these less energetic tracks, but by their placement. Later on for instance, excellent and well-positioned “interlude tracks” are provided by Asphalt Leash, bETON bARRAGE and Cold Flesh Colony. On the other hand, perhaps I was expecting the beginning momentum of “Revelation” to introduce harder, upbeat rhythms rather than just distorted drones and static noise.
With that in mind, the contribution of Pneumatic Detach at track five comes as a breath of fresh air. One of the compilation’s outstanding tracks, “.ryhim.ninept.” grabs your attention with cut-up, crunchy beats, heavy bass, and a nicely structured, unique rhythm progression. From that point onward, “Revelation” picks up the pace and really begins to make good its eschatological promises. Scrap.edx and Iszoloscope serve up some typically aggressive noisy fare, Sedarka adds impressive and originally jarring experimental IDM/industrial, and Nitrous Flesh offers an epic two-part closing piece suitable for the culmination of any apocalyptic vision.
As a final item of interest, several of the artists have included spoken samples of Squid’s text in their contributions (several track titles are also taken from the story). Not only does this intertwine the dual inspirations of words and music, it also provides appropriately horrific glimpses of the doomed human voice drowning in a sea of unforgiving industrial noise, which is the ultimate goal of “Revelation.”


— Dutton Hauhart

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