181

Richard Pinhas: Metal/Crystal

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
Richard Pinhas: Metal/Crystal
The music of Metal/Crystal is loud and scary. It is not oxymoronic to call Richard Pinhas' creation the noisiest ambient record this year. The guitarist, perhaps the French equivalent to Robert Fripp, has been making music for 30 years, first with the electronic rock band Heldon, then as a solo act, extending ambient music with his guitar processing techniques.

Of late he has been experimenting with the international noise scene, releasing Keio Line (Cuneiform, 2008) with Masami Akita (aka Merzbow). The pair formed a mutual admiration society, whose individual voices shelved in deference to the overall project.

Merzbow is back on Metal/Crystal, joining Pinhas collaborators, son Duncan Pinhas (electronics), Jerome Schmidt (electronics), Antoine Paganotti (drums), Didier Batard (bass), Patrick Gauthier (mini-Moog) and fellow noise artist Wolf Eyes.

Disc one starts off simply enough, with Pinhas' processed guitar landscapes easily digested, with a bit of bass and drums. He paints scenes easily enough, drawing the ear to electronic waves and eerie spaceship silence and metallic hum. Things get really interesting in the midsections of the two discs, when Merzbow and Wolf Eyes apply their craft. The tracks lengthen to nearly 30 minutes apiece, and the intensity of tumult spikes.

From the beat-driven openers, "Hysteria (Palladium)" dispenses with all rhythm, focusing the flow on industrial noise. Pinhas eschews the head-bob for the head scratch. The act of listening evolves into an act of experiencing. Sounds flow and retreat, never really allowing for release. Played at differing volumes, the experience changes. At lower volumes, the ambient nature and subtly of the sound is the effect. At higher volume, the industrial power overwhelms. By the third piece "Schizophrenia (Silver)," Pinhas, Merzbow and Wolf Eyes bring a rhythm section into the mix for an extended jam.

Brilliant, and scary, at the same time.

Track Listing

CD1: Bi-Polarity (Gold); Paranoia (Iridium); Depression (Loukoum); CD2: Hysteria (Palladium); Schizophrenia (Silver); Legend.

Personnel

Richard Pinhas: guitars, electronics; Merzbow: electronics; Wolf Eyes: electronics, diverse instruments; Antoine Paganotti: drums; Didiet Batard: bass; Patrick Gauthier; mini-Moog; Duncan Pinhas: electronics; Jerome Schmidt: electronics.

Album information

Title: Metal/Crystal | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Cuneiform Records

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Sun Trance
Sun Trance
Markus Reuter
Read Lies
Lies
Clemens Kuratle Murmullo
Read Prism
Prism
Conference Call

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.