Fifty years ago (as of June 12th),
English free improvisation forefathers AMM recorded
A monumental and intimidating slab of noise, it wasn't even released until 1981; it's THAT monstrous and weird. It was daunting then, at 88+ minutes spread over two LPs. Now available as an expanded 2 CD set with all the recordings from the session, it's even MORE intimidating at 109+ minutes! So, what does this monster of a recording sound like?
Well, it's FAR more intense than AMMMusic 1966, the groundbreaking album that preceded it.
The quintet of Lou Gare, Christopher Hobbs, Eddie Prévost, Cornelius Cardew, and Keith Rowe used fairly traditional instruments for this. Cello, piano, percussion, electric guitar, saxophone, violin, and....... electronics? That latter element means both pedals and preparations as well as shortwave radios, used both for random snatches of sound and for the static between stations. Listening to The Crypt, though........ who knows WHAT is making which sound? This is a mass of intense and enthralling noise made by masters of their art. It's industrial music before Industrial records. It's the UK equivalent to European/Canadian/US weirdos like The Sperm, Nihilist Spasm Band, and Intersystems. It's several years of musical insurrection both predicted and perfected, as jarringly out of time fifty years later as it must have been when it was recorded. Nothing else is like this, and you'll be hard pressed to find something this eerily prescient. It's not for everyone, but anyone here at Electronic Cottage owes it to themselves to check it out. It's essential.