By: Dan Grunebaum | Apr 17, 2012 | Issue: 942 | 2 Comments | 3,722 views

The term “noise music” often doesn’t do justice to songs that—lacking recognizable melodies and chords—nevertheless possess a strong sense of structure and musicality. French philosopher/guitarist Richard Pinhas and Japanese experimental musician Merzbow’s latest collaboration is just that. Recorded live at an experimental music fest in Washington DC, Rhizome (a mass of roots) lives up to its biological title with an organic sense of oceanic ebb and flow that suffuses its five tracks. Pinhas’s processed guitar emits sounds ranging from identifiable guitar melodies to wind-like sighs, while Merzbow’s laptop whirs and clicks, bloops and bleeps in the background. Instead of meandering from A to B, the album functions almost like a symphony, with recurrent phrases and passages that give it coherence and impact.

Buy Rhizome here.



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  • xrcxx

    Yes, excellent…been listening to Richard and Merzbow for almost 20 years. The Cuneiform record label has the best in new innovative and creative soundz wild beyond your normal thump thump thump thump beat of the ever-lasting bass drum. Richard sure is a pioneer of synthesis of synth sounds. Highly recommended but for those who total lose themselves in sound.

  • xrcxx

    Sorry, I forgot to mention that although RP plays guitar his early work with Heldon (French Band) in the 90′s he used A.R.P. electroniks, VCS3, Mellotron, in the 80′s E-Mu computer system, Polymoog, Moog 55and a polyphonic synth…

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