Kabutogani: Cymma

Whatever distance there is separating Raster-Noton and Electroton collapses almost completely in this twenty-four-minute remix EP of Kabutogani (Jerome Berthelot) tracks based upon material featured on his 2010 album Bektop (a joint release by Electroton and Mille-Plateaux). Five different remixers contribute to the EP but all bring a similarly glitch-oriented production sensibility to the project, a move that in turn enhances the release's cohesiveness.

Though Jurgen Heckel's Sogar remix of “Book Gills” is consistent with the kind of heavily glitch-centric style one might expect to hear on one of his 12k releases, the overhaul also concentrates on a funkier approach that's very much characteristic of Raster-Noton and specifically Carsten Nicolai's Alva Noto style. Yannick Donet and Frederic Bailly get their machinery up and running for an Absent remix of “Proposition 3,” a bass-heavy and glitched-out affair that manifests its own breed of metal-machine funkiness; electronic swarms pulsate, flicker, and fire throughout the piece, at times creating an ominous ambiance in doing so. Hamburg-based Incite/ then coats “Peripheric” in industrial-strength layers of grime without negating the bulldozing funk rhythms that quietly rumble at the track's core. Peter Morrison's Dust Engineering Ltd treatment of “Clave (Wrong)” is a little bit more fractured than the others in that its various elements seem constantly to be on the verge of splintering into textural and rhythmic shards. The EP's Alva-Noto connection moves to the forefront most of all during Martin Weiss's “Protocole Weiss” in the way it arranges blips and smears of varying pitches into a funk workout that's so rhythm-focused it almost eschews melody altogether. Need it be said that Cymma should strongly appeal to Electron and Raster-Noton aficionados?

March 2012