Maurizio Bianchi / Abul Mogard - Nervous Hydra / All This Has Passed Forever
The Good News
This is the man. Serbian synthesist Abul Mogard is fast becoming a much-loved figure in the underground following his wider exposure to the world via his wistfully widescreen Works compilation for Ecstatic (which gathers together his much sought after early cassette releases). Mogard’s relatively unusual path to releasing music is well documented, but bears repeating here.
Upon taking retirement from a job at a factory which he held for decades, Mogard craved the mechanical noise and complex harmonics of the industrial workplace, and found that the best way to fulfil that need was through electronic music - using a limited set-up of Farfisa organs, voices, samplers and a self-built modular system. With this in place, he realized a peaceful yet haunting, sweetly coruscating sound that resonates uncommonly with music from Leyland Kirby to Alessandro Cortini, or Fennesz and Tim Hecker. The fact that Mogard hails from an area hardly well-known for its synth music, and that he’s of an age where most people take up gardening or lawn bowls, only helps to aid the enigma and magick surrounding this remarkable artist and his layered, emotional music.
For the 16 blissed minutes of "All This Has Passed Forever," Mogard uses Farfisa organ and Serge modular synth (recorded at the renowned EMS studios in Stockholm) then adds field recordings at his home-studio to bring you to a place of soothing, glacial calm. On one hand this is almost funereal, elegiac music for a passing friend, or the passing of time. On the other it has the intricate beauty and ease of Eno's recent generative recordings. A truly spellbinding testament to the transcendent and transportive energies of electronic music.
The Bad News
At 61 years of age Maurizio Bianchi is known as the godfather of the Italian industrial noise scene, having over 190 albums to his name since his I.B.M. debut in 1980. His stated aim is to "produce technological sounds to work for a full awareness of modern decadence." His 17 minute piece, "Nervous Hydra", is a greyscale-toned scrape with extra-terrestrial radio signals that, sadly, sounds amateurish and boring to these ears.
Fuck the old masters. Long live the new 'old' flesh.
Edition of 500. (Lee)
Check out a track here.