Merzbow - _Collapse Twelve Floors_
(OHM, 2001)
by: Gabriel Sanchez (7 out of 10)
What good would be returning sporadically to do noise reviews if I didn't have some more Merzbow to offer? Keeping in line with his newfound desire to keep trying something new (or fairly new), Akita-san makes use of nothing other than an Apple computer for an effort that, while lacking in the intensity department, still manages to come together as an overall enjoyable listen. Much of the noise is kept under control through what is likely careful computer editing. Adding it the addition of theremin and his usual bag of electronic tricks, the sounds themselves resemble those largely boasted on his other works in recent years. The computer does manage to serve as more than an elaborate editing mechanism, as clearly the influence of reworked sound bites and mixed over layers of noise make their presence known throughout the recording. While I am the last person to slight any noise artist for trying to venture off into new territory, it seems that more and more Merzbow is fighting to "stay alive" in a sea of new talent by forcing itself to do something it hasn't done before. What is lacking is a distinct formula for excellence which Akita appeared to have captured on many of his releases between 1994 and 1996. Those days of harsh walls of sound mixed in with Akita's own fine-tuned ear for subtle dynamics seem to be over. The new days are far more directionless, and hence do not work towards establishing a body of work that any one listener may be able to point to as "satisfying". Certainly none of this will prevent me from tracking down any Merzbow albums that catch my fancy; it may just yet diminish the legacy of one of the true legends of the avant garde.

(article published 19/10/2001)

5/13/2005 X Hoose 8.5 Merzbow - Bariken
11/20/2000 G Sanchez 8 Merzbow - Door Open at 8 AM
1/16/1999 G Sanchez 6 Merzbow - Tauromachine
11/18/1996 A Lewandowski 8 Merzbow - Rainbow Electronics 2
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