Tag Archives: lo-fi

saint profanity

20 Jun

It’s hard to recover after the first track of the newest album by Holy Fuck. Man, these Canadians really know how to play with tension. 1MD is mystical, slow, and mysterious. Perfect for an intro to a science-fiction movie. And the intensity grows slowly. Mixed voices are added, almost as if they were part of a church mass, more and more noise comes until a heavy-electronic coda which raises goose bumps. And then… you get a disco beat and you’re feeling like you’re completely out of this world. Until the finale of the last track, that is.

I have completely no idea how is it possible. First of all, cause this album is not much different from other albums by Holy Fuck. Of course, it’s a consequent route and one could imagine something like that coming. But there is no real shift from Holy Fucks previous recordings. Secondly, cause it’s music of our times. Sure, we can say it’s a bit alternative (like we are used to call most of the music of our times that we do not know how to name the genre) but, frankly, is it so much different from all the other music in the wide borders of “electro” that is being recorded every day? Not really.

There is something, however, that makes you shiver and just devour this record. Maybe cause it’s simply honest. You can feel it. Holy Fuck creates something that is just close to their hearts, something that is true. And perhaps that’s because you’re not really cynical, when you listen to it.

Funny, but the intro to the album possessed me so much that I even, for the first time in my life, started to think what does the name of the band really mean. And somehow, although I have to admit, I never looked at it that way, I had a thought that it’s the best name this band could ever have. “Holy Fuck” – a perfect symbiosis of sacrum and profanum. And this is just what this music is. Something grand, metaphysical, dense, almost religious (or, should I rather say: spiritual?), and, at the same time, something that is strongly connected to the most profane – typical disco beats, dance music, strong rhythm, things that are primal to our nature. And… even more funny… I had a thought that Holy Fuck managed to create something that the whole 1980’s tried to create but failed.

And it’s not like I admire 1MD only (although it will remain one of my most favorite tracks of all times). The whole of Latin is great. It is very varied and still very consequent in its complexity. Strong rhythms, synthpop on one hand, on the other – mellow tunes, delicate, almost inaudible, yet present, influences of classical music; plus – yes, you may not believe it – rock (e.g. Stay Lit). I was actually surprised by how much this album… rocks! It is electronic music. It is experimental. No doubt about that. Still, out of synthesizers, a real percussion and some electro beats Holy Fuck manage to create something I would call a rock symphony. And, no, no, don’t think of “symphonic rock” as a genre because it’s totally misleading.

I am also amazed by how the musicians play with different layers of melodies. It’s a constant improvisational charade intertwined with solid foundations of the bass and drums (Silva & Grimes is a great example). Sometimes you can also feel the band has a great sense of humor. SHT MTN starts as if it was a disco hit and out of rather dull and repetitive sounds they create something that is definitely alternative rock and has little to do with discotheques and fancy clubs where you can snort cocaine and shake your butt to a DJ tune that is no different from all the other tunes you have heard in the TV or the radio.

A great record. Another electro/ambient/synthpop/experimental/whatever album of this year that completely astonished me. Hmmm… could it be that the future of the music lies in a… synthesizer? X-D Or am I just getting old and cannot get used to different rock bands than the ones that I listened to for the past 29 years? I wonder…

Sufi says…

23 May

When I listened to this album over a month ago, I though that this is something I will not forget even in many years to come and that… fuck… either this guy is totally crazy, or he’s constantly high, or somebody just invented a new religion within music… You obviously have no clue what am I talking about, right?

Once upon a time, in sunny San Diego, a black man was born. After years of his life, which was filled with practicing and teaching yoga, tasting different substances available to mankind and performing his music with alternative bands and artists while trying to find the inner self, the man moved to Las Vegas, Nevada. And, as all the major religions teach us, sin cities are best for becoming a prophet. Thus, Sumach Ecks, known now as Gonjasufi, recorded his debut album in 2010 and his religion of crazy sounds, electro-scratches, transe samples and loops gained a huge amount of new followers. And, beware, the religion is spreading quickly!

I totally fell in love with this album from the very beginning. At first I was very happy about it since I am 100% positive that this is going to be the best album of the year of 2010. On the other hand, it made me sad that I won’t hear anything that extraordinary for at least a few years. A Sufi and a Killer is absolutely something none of us have ever heard in our lives. It’s not an album which is easy-to-listen. It’s experimental, it’s based on transe rhythms, lots of samples and influences from different parts of the world (most notably India, Greece, Spanish flamenco, native American music or even – let’s not be afraid of using this word – rituals), it is like a prayer, no… more like a mantra, like contemplation and a sophisticated, ecstatic sacrament. And all of this is deliberately made a bit old school, as if it would be an old tape, a rare box holding priceless souvenirs from the past. I’m not a religious person myself but Gonjasufi very often speaks about religion and – naturally – about yoga, and, even if you are not religious, it’s hard to restrain yourself from the overwhelming spiritual power of this album. This music is SACRED! I felt, all at once, as if I took part in an anthropological travel, looking for ancient cultures, trying their food, speaking their language, singing with the tribe. And I really don’t care if it sounds pathetic or not. And, I suppose, Gonjasufi cares even less…

Also, for a long time, I haven’t heard anything that would be so fresh, so new, so different from anything else and, at the same time, so deeply rooted in… well, different things (a few of which I already mentioned above). It’s like Sufi poetry, like the whirling Dervishes in Turkey, like being hypnotized or being in a state of levitation/nirvana/call it whatever you want. And you don’t really need to be a fan of electro and/or ethnic music to appreciate it. Just listen to it, and you’ll know what I mean. If there is anything, anything at all that I could compare it to, it would be some of the experimental albums of John Zorn, although, I suppose, such a comparison wouldn’t make good to any of the mentioned artists.

Luckily, my favorite song was also chosen as a promo single, so I can recommend it to you wholeheartedly, not thinking that – as usual – I always pick up different choices for a single promoting an album than the one that is chosen by an artist, lol. This one is particularly special, in my opinion, cause it gives you the taste of what Gonjasufi really is – a crazy mix of an amazing beat, electronic noise, sharp vocals and humming all in one, a sample of flamenco and gods-know-what-else that reminds me of native American music but I cannot really name the thing, lmao.

If you want to check Gonjasufi’s official website, click here. (This guy is a genius!)

And remember… there is no spoon! X-D