MERZBOW & LAWRENCE ENGLISH 'ETERNAL STALKER'

On their first official collaboration, Japanese noise pioneer Masami Akita aka Merzbow and Australian sound sculptor Lawrence English present a harrowing, surrealist portrait of nocturnal industrial activity, spawned by field recordings made in a sprawling factory complex seven hours north of English’s home in Brisbane. He characterizes the area as “uneasy and unsettling,” awash in the sickly glow of smelters and refinement machinery, somehow not of this world – a liminal quality vividly captured in Andrei Tarkovsky’s sprawling purgatorial opus, Stalker, to which the title alludes. Akita, too, described early drafts of Eternal Stalker as feeling "like the soundtrack to a dystopian science fiction opera." A mood of mechanical dread and ruined futures permeates each of the album’s seven potent compositions. Opener “The Long Dream” sets the stage with steady rain on sheet metal, punctured by thunder and metallic echoes, reverberating to the rafters in a collapsing warehouse. Quickly the tempest rises. “A Gate Of Light” and “Magnetic Traps” both convulse in churning furies of electric demolition and rattling chains, roaring and relentless. “The Visit” and “Black Thicket” operate more at a distance, surveying the topography of steam, rust, and liquid metal from above, their flickers of violence swallowed by blankets of darkness. This is noise at its most elemental and unknowable: brooding, bristling, and opaque, stalking forbidden peripheries of chaos and creation.

MERZBOW & LAWRENCE ENGLISH 'ETERNAL STALKER'