MSBR / K2 / Magmax - _Split_
(MSBR, 1999)
by: Gabriel Sanchez (8 out of 10)
I believe this is the first time I have ever reviewed a three way split and I must confess I am not entirely sure how to approach it. In the beginning of it all is a live track from a veteran of the Japanoise scene (and an artist who is continually growing on me), MSBR. This live piece is less along MSBR's harsh side and instead makes moves towards a more atmospheric feel. Despite expecting a more "in your face" type of sound, I can find little to gripe about a sound that is as dynamic as that of MSBR. K2 supply two tracks of their own during this three way dance. It's what you would expect from K2: crashing metallic sounds, whirlwind pulsations of subdued electronic madness, and more quick changes to the noise than one could possibly hope to keep track of. Though I would never put K2 into the realm of being the harshest noise artist in the field today, his tracks came off as quite the shock following the more laid back approach that MSBR chose to take. The fun little three way finally comes to a close with Koji Tano of MSBR's other project, Magmax. Until this album, I had not the pleasure of hearing Magmax and if this one track is any indication of the work Koji is producing under this name, then I am hooked. Much of the sound revolves around projecting the more dark psychedelic aspects of MSBR, but interlacing it with a variety of moans, screams, and cries supplied by (I would assume) Koji himself. Though this type of style can sometimes creep into the realms of cheesy, I have heard it work wonders for groups such as Bastard Noise and Magmax seems to have captured that same energy. Even if the other outpourings of Magmax are not along these lines, this one track was enough, in my view, to put this release over the top from being simply good to great. A worthy addition to any noise fan's collection, in my view, and also a very good way to sample three of Japan's more worthy noise projects.

Contact: MSBR, 2-2-12-101 Hanegi, Setagaya, Tokyo 156-0042, Japan

(article published 19/5/1999)

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