Wednesday, June 8, 2016
Album Review: Nadja – Sv
Nadja are masters of this particular genre and this 41-minute single-track album is a true work of art. Aidan Baker & Leah Buckareff have combined the elemental with the industrial and set it to the bruising grind of dark electronica.
An eerie opening constructs itself a sub-aquatic world with an electrical buzz and an mechanical hum that builds to a visceral crescendo. By five minutes the bass rumble and harmonic nuts and bolts have begun to lock into place. At seven and a half minutes the percussive elements have steadily begun to fizz and click into life. At nine minutes the steady morphosis is ebbing and flowing. The whole has become an unstoppable locomotive riding the rails, chuntering and chittering with gritty signs of life. Deeper in the sounds have begun to fully combine – here, the electronic beat drives ever onwards and the sub-level bottom-end rattles the ribs. As the mind empties and the focus becomes absolute, “Sievert” lords it as dance music for the undead.
Thirty-three minutes down and the switch-up occurs, changing its angle of impact to open up the rhythm and create space. Here, it is like riding the back of a vast, lumbering beast. The drums come into focus and the music’s black grip tightens. Dread takes over and the slow degradation of the world Nadja have created shows its first cracks. The crust snaps, time patterns and effects warp and reality begins to leak back in. That space you’ve been staring at on the wall for the last half-hour is no longer your focal point as Baker strikes the single piano key that breaks the spell.
Summing up, Sv is experimental drone that slowly warms to its task before worming its way inside and reconfiguring your heartbeat, your pulse, your brainwaves. Helpless, you’ll dance to its multi-layered echoing vibe over and over.