This is Glenn Branca's second release and it's furious, beautiful, cacophonous, inspirational, angelic, lifting, symphonic, and just damned noisy! The music is written for four specifically-tuned electric guitars at ultra-high volume, bass and drums and is No-Wave at it's most artistic, preceding Sonic Youth (Lee Ranaldo is actually one of the four guitarists & Thurston Moore would later work with the Ensemble) and shoe-gazers like My Bloody Valentine and The Jesus & Mary Chain. The Glenn Branca Ensemble literally tear a new hole in the fabric of music, crossing the divide between NYC punk rock and minimalist classical composers like Stockhausen, Cage and Xenakis. More recently bands like Sigur Rós & Godspeed, You Black Emperor! have lifted the flag for this type of hair-raising noise, using synths, samplers and all-sorts of clever equipment, but Branca achieved it with little more than loud amps, ingenuity and dedication.
A collection of post-minimalist/NY punk composer Branca's early works shows the latent promise he went on to achieve. More consonant and accessible than his masterful guitar driven symphonies, the pieces are shorter and punchier too. The perfect introduction to Branca's dark, tormented soundscapes.
This record is an Cacophony of beautifully structure "math" beats thatcompletely enveloped me on the first listen. It's hard to believe this wasfirst recorded in the early eighties as it still stands as an immenselyenjoyable album and an obvious inspiration to a lot of the bands past andpresent. This is not an album for anybody who is hoping to find somefoot tapping hum-a-longs, or anything remotely Sonic Youth-esque (despiteRonaldo's involvement), you shouldn't buy this album for great harmoniesor vocals coz there ain't any. This is a monumental album in musichistory, every home should own a copy. If you don't buy it you're a pilluck. Simple.