Friday, 6 August 2010

MARGOT'S HOLY GRAILS (brand new musick => no download link provided)



Original Issue: 2010 Heart & Crossbone (HCB 026) Buy it here!!!


Margot-meter: 5 moons / 5


1 Untitled 2:12
2 Untitled 1:21
3 Untitled 12:21
4 Untitled 7:58
5 Untitled 9:21
6 Untitled 5:37
7 Untitled 5:29
8 Untitled 15:51
9 Untitled 8:55
10 Untitled 10:33


Miscellaneous Reviews:

? comes to us from Israeli noise/metal label Heart And Crossbones, and it's one of his creepiest recordings. ? continues in the disturbing, surreal vein as his other releases, but with a series of sounds that generates stronger feelings of fear and uneasiness, as if someone has commissioned Dave Phillips to create his version of a horror movie score. The ten tracks are based around field recordings that have been augmented with actual composed musical parts, like clusters of dark lower register piano that echo through recordings of rainfall and fields of mysterious clattering and clanging noises, Carpernter-esque synths, and distorted accordion drones and wisps of bowed cello strings that appear in between strange smooching and slapping sounds, a door being loudly shut (a recurrent sound that reappears throughout the album), droning insectile buzz, nocturnal forest sounds, random laughter, deep gong-like reverberations, brutally loud crashing metal, heavy footsteps, and crushing walls of white noise. Whenever vocal sounds appear on Phillips's recordings, it's usually in the form of grotesque vomiting or retching or choking sounds that assault the listener, but on ?, we hear voices that range from haunting (ghostly voices, angelic chorals) to the demonic (impossibly deep throat singing, and horrific screams of pain). Some of the most chilling moments on the album appear on the third and the final tracks: the former evolves into a disturbing soundscape of deep pitch-shifted beast-like groans and demonic grunting over the orgasmic moans and gasps of women that are looped over and over, a hallucinatory tangle of samples and grotesque voices that eventually morphs into an eerie chamber-string drone, later joined by recordings of owls, random backwards sounds run through trippy FX, and an sad, melancholic accordion melody; the last track is dark piano-led minimalism and Lustmordian blackness, the sounds all subtly warped and tweaked, creating an off-center, nightmarish feel that goes on for more than ten minutes. From beginning to end, this is an intense and agitated performance that has long empty fields of quiet torn apart by sudden eruptions of unsettling noise. Full color digipack packaging. (

'?'. It was recorded 'during a period dominated by severe disturbances of loss, mental abysses and despair' and yes, we are not in for some fun for the next eighty minutes. Normally I would complain about the length of such a release, but somehow it all seems to make sense here. The shortest piece is just over one minute, the longest just under sixteen. And it seems to be without the sort of noise those earlier mentioned youngsters care about: Phillips uses loops, piano, concrete sounds, very little sound effects, so all the sounds are as a dry as possible, cello, accordion and voice material (sighing, moaning, crying) and the sounds of torture the human body. Like I said, nothing conservative noise here, but quite a depressing album altogether. Low bass sound here and there, obscured field recordings and such like make up the backbone, and top these repeating sound fragments of instruments and voices. Bleak, dark stuff. Not much information on the cover to go by, but depression has not be made that clear in quite some time. A creepy record, not for the weak of heart and mind. That's true noise for you. (Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly)

I was expecting to be confronted by a wall 30 second howls of apocalyptic rage and instead I’m being gently caressed by a set of introspective and vaguely psychedelic ambient(ish) pieces. Phillips has undergone a sea-change on this album and has shown a markedly different side to his creativity through the use of accordion, cello, piano & field recordings. The music is beautifully composed (in both senses of the word) with subtle nuances that reward repeated, and close, listens. It’s an absolute joy to hear a musician step waaaay outside his comfort zone and it’s an extra special joy when he does it this well. (

Recorded "during a period dominated by severe disturbances of loss, mental abysses and despair", ? does not shy away from expressing those traits. Notes tapped on the lower register of a piano and a weeping accordion signify utter depression amid Phillips's exceptional use of nocturnal field recordings. Owls, crickets, warehouse resonance and forest noises form a hallucinatory, slow-moving concoction; but it's his use of the human voice that makes this album so unsettling. A male voice, pitchshifted to a demonic other, laughs and grunts amid spiralling snippets of a female voice caught somewhere between orgasm and pain. The interaction between these recurring voices reflects the voyeuristic qualities of Luc Ferrari's concrète pieces, with Phillips pushing the psychosexual drama to the brink of self-annihilation. (Jim Haynes, The Wire July 2010)

? collects compositions built around all manner of field recordings, metallic crashes, babbling textures and, indeed, the occasional tidal wave of static white attack. What’s most noticeable is the pervasive sense of genuine unease and moodiness, though. Throughout the layers of breathy vocals, groaning, minimal piano keys, swirling rumbles seemingly beamed in from the ether, cracking sounds, accordian, dissonant tones, birdsong and so on, an alarming amount of space and restraint is given to retaining an atmosphere that soaks on all from sombreness to something more distinctly menacing. If anything, there are vague parallels with some of Andrew Liles’ work, but perhaps with a rather more sober edge. No bad thing at all, as there’s only one Liles and, well, ? suggests yet another artist whose back catalogue must be well worth exploring in its own right. So much for my expectations. Those HCB boys have gone and done it again! (Richard Johnson,

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