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KNURL – Dislodge 2CS


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SKU: 220317018 Category: Tag:


“Torus” was thrown in with my order of Merzbow’s “Doors Open at 8” in 1999, while I was developing an understanding of what I thought noise was.

My view at the time was that “good” noise involved an unknowable blob moving toward the listener. You could never tell what anything was; but here it comes again and it was always becoming something else.

Knurl was the first noise I heard where each sound was clearly the product of something being slammed, bowed, strummed, plucked or struck. It wasn’t hard to imagine what was happening, even though it was still completely other. The tangible familiarity of the sounds made the work more obscure and unknowable. Pushing beyond easy-to-do brutality into hard-to-do surrealism.

The non-aggressive but intense volume and bulk of audio, along with the fact that it was mostly acoustic, made a huge impression on me. In fact, it is safe to say Knurl defined – for a lifetime – my personal concept of physicality in noise. A formative experience based on a freebie throw in (thank you Alien8, who deserve more acknowledgement in general).

I hope to replicate that experience for others by taking a unique sequencing approach on this massive 2 hour album. The idea is to present ambient pieces with the classic Knurl metallic sculpture brutalism, in order to jar the mind out of listening in terms of aggression or thickness and direct it instead towards detail and dimensionality. We requested as much ambient material (that Alan usually records under the name Pholde) as possible in order to frame the release and to emphasize that the “brutality“ is not the point but a side effect. Brutality as a matter of fact.

The harsh songs emerge comically. After 9+ minute ambient tracks, they take on an almost slapstick role. I view comedy as the door to surrealism, some would say absurdity. Completely absurd juxtapositions of what should be “different” sounds does it for me. I like weird shit and that’s why i got into noise. May the experimental
heart of noise remain forever intact.

Listening to Knurl like a modern wall noise artist is the wrong move. I hope to separate loudness from aggression and beg you to listen for the elegance of the physical sound and purpose of the movements. You will notice a similar patient and somewhat athletic approach in harsh and mellow pieces. Physicality in noise defined not as “brutality”, which is simple enough to achieve, but limited to this one specific set of hands and this one specific pile of metal individualist singularity.

I wanted to show a legend in a different light and illustrate the way a concept like brutality and our expectations of it have changed. I urge you to wait until you have the full two hours to listen to this release, so that it wields the most complete impact.

When I first heard Knurl, “brutality” was simply a feature of a larger, multifaceted absurdity. Yes it was absurdly loud, but it was absurd in a lot of other ways too….

I fear this project gets lumped in with people waving pieces of flashing around too often and wanted people to listen to it in a different context. Knurl is on a current tear, releasing some of his best works in the last 5 years. This is an attempt to create a definitive Knurl album. A massive task.

If it fails to achieve that, I hope it at least helps newer people to appreciate how radically different Knurl is and was and why he’s a legend, which should be easier.

— JASON CRUMER (march 22)

Additional information

Weight 0.13 kg