Boomkat Product Review:
Arch mutant Joachim Nordwall gets it on with Kevin Drumm and friends on a collaborative album dedicated to Mika Vainio for Antwerp’s Entr’acte.
A consummate collaborator, Nordwall patently knows where, when and how to subsume the ego and merge with other, like-minded artists, more often working with others than not. In the 8 parts of ‘Communication is the Key’ he sequences a diaristic account of his meetings with other, fellow underground lynchpins, in the process covering a broad disarray of styles within a brutalist, greyscale framework littered with strange signs of life.
Acting as the constant in a variegated sprawl, Nordwall supplies insistently heavy subbass pulses and flinty rhythms that betray his presence in both the tense, palpitating abstraction of ‘Orientation of Senses’ recorded with Coppice in Chicago, and again in two works with Gabi Losoncy recorded on the train and in Philadelphia’s Jefferson Station, each distinguished by Gabi’s favoured field recorded textures, before also underlining the hypnagogic, naturalistic haptic of Tim Barnes & Jeph Jerman’s scuffed haptic in ‘Hashimotor’.
The results become much more ambiguous and metamorphic when they shift focus from rhythm to tone on two interconnected, untitled collaborations with Kevin Drumm, the first making use of a creaky, disfigured husk that sounds like a post punk drum track slowed and pitched down 1000%, while on the second Drumm’s glowering drone takes on an almost radioactive glow, exuding lonely, existential dread.
To end the album, Nordwall's collaborations with John Duncan provide the album’s uncanniest moments with two works recorded at various Gothenburg studios, where the pairing invoke a genuinely chilling dance of boneless spectres, shrieking winds and metallic resonances.