2CD, Audiotrauma, 2006
From time to time, a music compilation will pop up with contents that will blow you away. Featuring a great music selection with tracks by a few established acts from the genres in which the compilation focuses as well as quite a few not so well-known but highly talented ones, such a compilation can be said the musical equivalent of an epiphany. “Noxious Arts Will Never Die!!!” is one of those rare compilations.
Released by the French underground label/collective Audiotrauma as a means to raise funds to pay the debts incurred from the Noxious Arts music festival and to finance a new edition of this festival, this compilation doubles as a label sampler and as a festival sampler. “Noxious Arts Will Never Die!!!” showcases the talent from the Audiotrauma roster and features tracks by non-Audiotrauma artists who also participated in the Noxious Arts Festival (some of them veritable powerhouses in the field of underground noise/industrial/experimental electronics) in two discs filled with exclusive tracks spanning many sub-genres of underground electronic music.
Relatively calm sounds without being chillout, disc 1 focuses on the sub-genres of Electro-Industrial, Dub and Dark Ambient. Twinkle’s remix of Flint Glass’ ‘classic’ “Dust Particles” is a nice opening track paving the way for other cinematic ambient tracks like Mind Necrosis Factor’s fascinating “Song Of Dunes” and “Sin Sacro Nu Me Grotesh” by The Thar Mapsal Program, the last one being almost ecclesiastic in nature. In between, a more intense track by Punish Yourself and Le Diktat and “We’ll Never Die”, an melodic piece by Cheerleader69 and the very talented Sonic Area. A smooth transition from these sounds is achieved with the introduction of evident beat structures in tracks by acts like Elektroplasma (with the Dub piece “Analyse”), Hegel, the always inspired Shizuka (with “Le Cercle”) and finally the very interesting broken beats “B Burn B”, fruit of the collaboration between Xanthphtisie and Acrylik. “Walked On The Sun”, a moody dub piece by Larvae is an interlude before a return to more intense tracks by Kirdec, Ex_Tension and Absent which, despite an apparent calm herald what the second disc has in store for the listener.
Disc 2, which focuses on harsher sounds, opens with a bang: the aggressive “Already Dead” by KL starts a ride of harsh, uncompromising sound which doesn’t slow down. Dive’s “Power Of Passion” remixed by Bahntier is memorable but psychotic tracks like “Noxious Circus” further raise the quality bar on the disc. To make things even more interesting, collaborations of F.Y.D with Ten Data Keshin and Mental Aggression with Brilliant Beast as well as Kids Return’s remix of Cdatakill’s “Falling From The Sky” raise breakbeats to a whole new level of intensity and insanity. Lith and Ebola easily follow suit with their brand of Rhythmic Noise, the shift to pure Noise being heralded by Strom Varx and Ripit’s “Kiero Puta” and culminating in “Fear”, a claustrophobic Ambient/Noise piece by HIV+ and Melek-Tha. Synapscape offer “Thumbnail Service” a rather competent rhythmic piece that serves as a bit of respite before the final intense non-stop noise barrages of “Audio Slut Konkassor” (by Muckrackers and White Dolls) and “J Death” (by Panic DHH) which close this disc on a very high note.
As much as I’ve tried, I couldn’t find any faults in this release; except perhaps a minor glitch in disc one as I couldn’t access the data section (though I must point out my computer’s DVD/CDR unit is quite temperamental). Otherwise, the artist and music selection as well as the track placement are splendid and nearly flawless, with both compilation discs flowing seamlessly. Showcasing music by so many artists in the field of underground electronics, “Noxious Arts Will Never Die!!!” is, like the festival it is associated with, a true eye and ear opener, which will surely broaden the musical horizons of most listeners. If there is a music compilation which can be defined as ‘essential purchase’ in 2006, “Noxious Arts Will Never Die!!!” is surely it.
— Miguel de Sousa