If you were to start an Indie band tomorrow, what would you name it? Too bad you can’t name it Venetian Snares, ‘cause that fantastic-for-an-indie-band name has already been taken. By a junglist. Venetian Snares makes me think of gentle beats, myriad-contradictions-of-love type lyrics and jangling guitars played by bearded and bespectacled blokes.
Start with that impression, and your expectations are sure to get a kick in the nuts. Know what you are up for, though, and you are in for quite a ride.
This is-even at its most mellow moments- a profoundly disconcerting collection of sounds the first time you listen to it. What the hell is happening? Breakbeats everywhere! Vocoded voices. Schizophrenic basslines. God knows what else. But if you listen carefully, there is some definite structure going on here, with ‘main riff’ and ‘chorus’ sections clearly discernible, with some rhythms easily accessible as well. Since people repetitive patterns attractive and listenable, I’ll put this down to Mr.Venetian Snares’ desire to be loved by the general public.
This is a profoundly disconcerting collection of sounds the first time you listen to it
Even on the longer tracks, such as ‘Nutimik’, there are shifts in dynamic. Ha! And you thought electronic was uni-dimensional. And what is this? An attempt at harmony!! ‘Husikam Rave Dojo’ introduces you to a Stevie Wonder-on-acid keyboard riff that leads into an absolute hammering of break beats and Amen breaks, with the occasional vocal part thrown in. You know what it sounds like? Hunter S. Thompson, high as a kite, listening to Britney Spears records. Yes.
The poetically named ‘Sporto Fucking Sellout Cocksuckerface’ is clearly something aimed at a mainstream audience, with its 6 minute running time punctuated by silence, a looped newsreading, frequent DJ style manipulation of the record and sheer inconsiderateness towards the aural health of the listener. Its gloriously anarchic.
This is clearly not music to be danced too. It’s not music to be marveled at. It’s not music to be heard for its harmonies and melodies or rhythms. No, as the guy on ‘Husikam Rave Dojo’ so pithily puts it, this is music to get ****ed up to. There isn’t much more to say, because there isn’t much more I can say. I’m not a regular listener of jungle/breakbeat/drum-n-bass. In fact, it could be argued that I’m not a listener of that stuff at all.
Either ways, for the non-junglist/rave party type person, try some Venetian Snares to reorient your perspective of how far crazy people have stretched the ambit of what ‘music’ is, and gotten away with it. Try. This sounds right.
– El Bajista
More ELECTRONICA reviews HERE.