showing off the latest customised noise-making gadget of Non-Bio's: a Super Speak & Spell!
Monday, 4 July 2011
Many thanks to Silvia Pizzini for this version, which makes a fair bit more sense than before! Original review here: http://www.voxempirea.com/it/recensioni.html#n The Londoner Howard is a multi talented artist, being a veteran of underground cinematographic experimentation and video projects, both as producer and animator.The two EPs that I chose to review jointly are the result of a musical enterprise called Non-Bio, undertaken individually by Howard in the field of experimental minimal-electro/industrial. Under the label Mrs Vee Recordings, the work proposes itself as a crossover between the two different aspects, often complementary, that characterize the avant-garde universe: the association of visual media and sound, typically cold and evocative, whose combined synergy strengthens both the images observed and the sound structure offered. The visual art of Non-Bio's repertory is conceived like a sequence of slow frames, often in black and white mode, immortalizing derelict architectural details, contemporary and ancient, androids' visions, natural landscapes interpreted with glacial eyes and mind, together with a progression of decadent industrial allegories full of neo-symbolism. For an in depth analysis of the two EPs, I'll begin with the début entitled 'Pillar of Salt'; its first offer is the bloodless particle of 'Travellator', an alienating assemblage of synth and filtered percussions; followed by the equally minimalistic 'Mutoid Man', track of robotic vocal incitations surrounded by primary electro-industrial pulsations. 'Telomere (part I)' disseminates attenuated rhythmic jolts and abrasive keyboard propagations, concepts that continue in the corresponding 'Telomere (part II)', also sinisterly orchestrated by a venomous and skeletal synth. The homonymous 'Pillar of Salt' channels an array of cold and dry sounds and melodies, together with inexpressive flashes of voice on misty synth filters, and concludes the first EP. Now is the turn of 'Megacube', the most recent of Non-Bio's discography: in this act the sonic constructions undergo a dynamic variation concerning rhythmic mobility, which becomes sustained and danceable, despite being surrounded by an almost inhuman anti-melodic background. 'Megacube' is also the first of the tracks, which offers to the listener a circular module of programming, vocal loops and electronic interferences; the following 'Zen Spiders' emits slow, hypnotic waves of sound which is opaque and vaguely eastern, percussed by an anaemic e-drumming. 'Tomorrow's Another Day' prefers an almost drum'n'bass solution, with a verbose arpeggio of chords minimally sustained by synth. More fleshy, 'Polybius", final track, combines sound with further electronic elaborations, snappy rhythms and hisses of sequenced voice. The musical approach of Non-Bio is a singular event to experience holistically, merging, as a unified sense, sight and hearing. The indissoluble dialogue between the images born of Howard's creativity and the sounds he creates, seduces and engages the mind, influences and fascinates the imagination. For exclusive use of the post-modernist microcosm. Micrometric acoustics animated by video illustrations, minimalistic strategies accomplished with sobriety yet at the same time complex and tortuous. Non-Bio demands an erudite public, keen on musical experimenting and possessing a flexible mind, in order to fully internalize the messages conveyed. The soundtrack of futuristic dreams.