Gehinnom – Eis Geennan (SPNet22)

This is the album artwork for Gehinnom's album Eis Geennan. It's brown!

Artist: Gehinnom
Title: Eis Geennan
Keywords: Flat Effect, Bastard Child, Pollux, Proc, lo-bit, noise, consistency nature, Effluvia, Sirona, drone, harsh, ambient, dark, Smell The Stench, Buddhist
Catnmbr: SPNet22
Label: SP Net
Reviewer: Alex Spalding

Hey, I’m Alex, this is my first review from the vat of sensory deprivation I’ve been living within (cost of living has skyrocketed stateside). I know nothing of this artist, so I’m going to have to come at this review from a pure audiological perspective.

We’ll begin with track one, titled ‘The Culture Of Terrorism’. Lights flicker dimly across my inner eye. There is a static drone grinding away for several minutes. Variations in the warble occasionally surface, keeping one aware of just how dark it can be inside the head. Drone induces delusions, but this track ends just before they can come to horrible fruition.

Track two (‘Totalitarian Mind’) begins, middles out and also mostly ends with a backwards beat. It rasps away in the higher->mid freq. range of experience. Something maybe living groans through while a dark, binarial ambient soundscape makes itself known, squirming out in the silent spaces. From the darker part of the mind, images of cut flesh surface, like a Japanese snuff/fetish film playing in your mind. Totalitarianism is a totality, decreeing that all of society and life be encompassed by the state: dictatorial politicians and their appointed bureaucratic institutions run everything, thus life and art are beseeched by rigor mortis.

‘Arms To Iran’ is the third piece. There is a choir of refrigerator hums, as though you were occupying several low-rent apartments in relative, quantum dimensions. Echoing, percussive blurts of noise permeate the soundscape. They are there to frighten, but do not haste to weep – and Iran… Iran, so far away… a region once known as Persia, with bucolic vineyards, a halcyon culture of love and great beauty, a storied history. Is now a land ravaged by oil barons. Will one day be a mountain range with the shifting of tectonic plates.

The fourth track is ‘Business As Usual’, on which the first noticeable bit of audio is a persistent, chunky, static-marred phaser sound whirring, wheezing in space. You feel like you’re being slurped upon by shapeless, bodiless entities in a voidworld in which nothing can really be said to exist and yet experiential data keeps emerging through the senses, telling you that at the very least, everything is not ok. Is this business as usual? Peel away the layers of skin, soft tissue and what some call the soul and you may find this track bleating there, reminding you that life is a damage you can only undo at death. Until then, try to watch as many cartoons as you can.

‘Goebbels Would Be Proud’ is the name of the fifth track on this album. Here, our sound further corrupts and degrades, just as did the influence of Goebbels on Europe. Nothing here is tasteful. It is as though a character out of the mind of the Marquis de Sade has donned a swastika-covered military uniform and is raping you with a dildo of distortion. Unpleasant, rasping backmasked beats punish you for being human. The lo-fi audio quality eventually reveals what seems to be voices commanding you to kill for Shaitan’s glory. You want to take a shit and wash your hands.

On the sixth track, ‘The Great Democrat’, breathy bits of lo-bit sound shift about for a few seconds until a smooth burst of airplane terminal fuzz washes up like a wave on the shore of a beach. The effect is nice. Eventually, this gives way to the sound of a giant balloon being deflated, a bit of clicking and a low resolution bit of vocal sound. Clicks come in and out at their leisure… are they intelligent, possessed of autonomy? All sorts of phased-in phased-out wisps of noise replace previous ones, creating the feel of movement. The sounds become more jittering as time wears on, but occasionally relapse into drone.

My overall thoughts of the album? The sounds presented herein are interesting. Rendering so much of the sound at a low bitrate helped create cohesion, and the low fidelity was used in a creative manner. The thematic elements detracted from my enjoyment, though. Crypto-Faschismo of the sort that the Smell The Stench net-label had begun putting out is one of the things setting post-industrial music of this kind back several steps. My only other complaint, from a pure audio perspective, is that too many of the tracks end very abruptly, which is jarring and makes the work feel more like a compilation of disjointed segments than something comprised of material meant to fit together.

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1 Response to Gehinnom – Eis Geennan (SPNet22)

  1. giftige_kip says:

    Great review! Thorough and honest! Highlights the best with constructive criticism that is more true than you might realize 🙂

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