Alex Franquelli

Author & Punisher – Melk En Honing Review

Author & Punisher – Melk En Honing Review

“As far as we know, futurist music is no more. One of the last attempts to resuscitate the arthritic soul of the clanging artistic mechanism in the rock and metal community was probably Mike Patton’s Pranzo Oltranzista, but the year was 1997 and I was almost two decades younger. In the meantime, neither the likes of John Zorn or Elliott Sharp have ever contributed to the reiteration of that crime against common sense that was immortalised on Marinetti’s Manifest of Futurism in 1909. Too abstract and complex, their art; too prudent and astute their approach, contemporary artists have been neglecting pure noise for over 50 years.” Confused? That must mean Alex is back to confound and bewilder.

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Ulver – Messe I.X–VI.X

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Ulver – Messe I.X–VI.X

The good people reading this blog will certainly not be offended if I start this review with a personal note. The problem is that, sometimes, I feel that in order to be able to express an individual judgement on an album, you have to try and see things from a different perspective. The world is full of people in bad faith and scribes with no taste in music, but problems arise when the two categories merge and ignorant self-assuredness is given a blank page and a word processor. With this in mind, the point of view on the opposite side of the spectrum is undoubtedly the most interesting and challenging one, so for this reason, and for this reason only, Messe I.X–VI.X is an incredibly arrogant and presumptuously conceited piece of contemporary music.

Circle – Incarnation Review

Circle – Incarnation Review

“I can judge a book by its cover. And I always do it. I even take the tome in my hands and I weigh it. Yes, I weigh books and decide whether or not I should go on reading the blurb on the usually polished, sensually pleasant cover. If the words convince me and the overall product smells good, I put it back on the shelves and I resume cruising through the aisles like a junkie who has learned that the best fix comes from the filthy hands of fellow addicts. They know better. In music, I follow the same criteria. I don’t get fooled too easily by a press agent all too eager to impress someone who enjoys weighing books in shopping centers on a Tuesday morning. I mean, come on.” Alex weighs both life and literature… and music. Yes, he’s like Anubis, weighing and judging all things. And now it’s Circle‘s turn to be measured.

Strangelight – 9 Days EP Review

Strangelight – 9 Days EP Review

““Anyone with a deep record collection will understand that Strangelight aren’t trying to reinvent the wheel, just taking the dust jackets off the old classics and melting the vinyl down for fun.” This, together with the name Fugazi, pretty much sums up the review of this EP. The rest of this page could be used to appeal for donations to the Flying Spaghetti Monster movement and nobody would complain. Any other lost cause worth campaigning for? But we’re good people and we can’t help but say a few other things. Like, for instance, that when you mention Ian MacKaye and Guy Picciotto’s band, you are implicitly referring to that musical trend which, from the late 1980s onwards, literally changed the way we see, consider and think about indie music. Thus, providing the listener not only with the musical attributes, but also with the exact artistic context is a mistake, because disappointment is always behind the corner and it will stitch you up at the first occasion. But Strangelight are a bunch of confident people.” Alex breaks down where this “super group” slots into the musical neighborhood and how their arrival raises or lowers property values therein. It’s all about location, people!

Mamiffer & Circle – Enharmonic Intervals (for Paschen Organ) Review

Mamiffer & Circle – Enharmonic Intervals (for Paschen Organ) Review

“There is a tendency, among music critics, to emphasize anything even vaguely related to experimentalism. For them, any album that smacks of avant-garde is either ‘a step forward’ or simply ‘beyond’. The trajectory, the direction and what boundaries the sound has allegedly trespassed are details that are almost always left undisclosed. The end result is that there is no critique, but instead an endless succession of attributes, excerpts and frustration.” Alex indicts the entire music reviewing industry as he digs into the interesting release by Mamiffer & Circle. Give us Hell, Alex!!

The Body – Christs, Redeemers Review

The Body – Christs, Redeemers Review

“Nobody understands The Body. Not even The Body understand The Body. It is a musical gesture pure and simple, with no need to be described and no reason to be judged. It is there and then, with no epistemological meaning whatsoever; it is an artistic expression lying on an imaginary floor deprived of attributes. Or full of attributes, which is the same thing. This duo of pain inflictors from Portland, Oregon, knows how to fiddle with cacophony while, at the same time, titillating your senses with moments of supreme beauty. Not happy with the description?” When Alex gets in a groove, he doesn’t care if you like his descriptions or not. That won’t stop him for waxing poetic all about these sludgesters.

Cult of Luna – Vertikal II Review

Cult of Luna – Vertikal II Review

“Now, where were we? I seem to remember this this great album from an act simply incapable of disappointing. In was the middle of winter and North Korea appeared as a threat to the dumb half of the world’s population. Today, while that same fraction struggles to locate the hemisphere Syria is in, the summer light convulses in his death throes this side of the planet and we take shelter from the impending cold. OK, but what about the music?” The ever mercurial Alex is here to cover the equally mercurial Cult of Luna‘s new release, Vertikal II. If you aren’t careful, you may get mercurial poisoning!

Grumbling Fur – Glynnaestra Review

Grumbling Fur – Glynnaestra Review

‘“Why did you start making music?” I asked, while pretending to sip the amazingly cheap red wine in my half-broken glass, scouting for what was left of my dignity while lying on the cold floor. I don’t think he ever gave me an answer, but there are times when Daniel O’Sullivan does not even bother formulating a reply. He breathed out another puff, I turned my head and gave an intoxicated nod to the ceiling while looking nowhere ahead of me. Grumbling Fur’s music is exactly like that whiff. It is not an answer because nobody has ever posed the right question.” If we ever needed someone to decipher that whiff of smoke, you know we’d call Alex to do so. He speaks smoke and obscurity, after all.

Primitive Man – Scorn Review

Primitive Man – Scorn Review

Oh the pleasure of punishment without guilt, of terror without a motive, of sadistic pain with too much uncontrolled joy and salty drops of unrequited love. Primitive Man call the bluff we all know as life by showing the vulgar side of our existences. Our bodies reek when in fear because the matter doesn’t lie; we do; it doesn’t. If less than 40 minutes of raw, filthy music played without compromises may sound like a sonic déjà-vu, don’t worry: you may be right. Primitive Man’s music is, in fact, an end to itself: an epic journey through punishing dissonances mostly played at an excruciatingly slow tempo. Eyehategod? Maybe. But more than 20 years after an album like In the Name of Suffering graced our ears, the demise of black metal, the growth of drone-based trends and the evolution of what some term ‘extreme music’ all give us an updated version of that masterpiece. It hurt then as it does now and the bleak landscape remains the same. Hate doesn’t evolve; it just gets bigger.” Alex is here to discuss life’s ugliness and pain, glorious pain. Apparantly this album makes him go on like Pinhead in a bondage bar.

Lord Dying – Summon the Faithless Review

Lord Dying – Summon the Faithless Review

“It’s all about the modes of production. Our own lives follow prearranged paths and are shaped around certain dynamics; we are not even ‘what’ we produce, but rather ‘how much’ we render to society. And it all goes in circles. The past is gone but we cling to it and although we sometimes deny its intrinsic value, we end up imitating its excesses. Ever played Earth, Wind & Fire in your car stereo? Of course not! But only those who don’t own a car can be trusted when they say they didn’t zap when Daft Punk’s horrific, ghastly latest single horribly graced their radio’s frequencies. The same goes with metal. There is nothing new and what is new is not metal. Therefore Lord Dying have spawned a great record.” Alex issues forth on what is old, new, borrowed and blue and also reviews a pretty smacking records from genre blenders Lord Dying. Oh, that Alex!