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Erthad – Gma

Erthad - Gma

CD-R, Zhelezobeton, 2007

The picture on the cover of “Gma” reminds you of a psychedelic staircase leading you through a darkened gate into the void. The reverse side shows you a drawing from two eyes with teeth (yes, it sounds as weird as it is). The disc itself – a CD-R in an edition of 250 copies – has been blessed by a drawing in the same atmosphere and it looks like all copies were drawn separately. Even though it looks minimal, you can see on the package alone that this release was made with a lot of love and affection.
When you play the album, the music quite fast grasps you by your throat and gives you an uneasy feeling which lasts up onto somewhere in the midst of the third (untitled) track. From that moment on you surrender to the feeling and you experience a certain beauty in its oppressive atmosphere.
Erthad from Kazan delivers an album filled with drones and ambience made from noise generators and according to the release-info, the human voice. Even though the voice isn’t recognisable as such, it doesn’t surprise me. In the current day and age you can go a long way with software manipulations and certain noise structures – well – they sound like they could be voices.
Six untitled tracks can be found on ‘Gma’ and there are no bad moments. As stated earlier, there is a turning point during the third track, probably caused by getting acquainted to the sound and surrendering to the emotions in the recordings. This atmosphere is prolonged towards track 4 and 5, while the last track turns out to be slightly rhythmic in nature. Okay, maybe not rhythmic, more like repetitive.
I’m already looking forward for that “difficult second release” and I can only hope it doesn’t take another 5 years, this is quality that deserves to be heard. Zhelezobeton has proven their knowledge about good music before with releases from Grismannen, The Infant Cycle and Cataclyst, and with a sales price of 6,50 euro for this gem, you have to have a good reason not to be at least a little bit interested.


— Bauke van der Wal

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