Obsession and expression. Marco Corbelli and Dennis Nilsen. Atrax Morgue “195 Melrose Avenue NW2.”
Marco Corbelli wore his obsessions on his sleeve while Dennis Nilsen had to keep his hidden. Marco’s work was released into the world. Nilsen kept his close and private at 195 Melrose Avenue NW2, London, England. The expression of Atrax Morgue was done through voice and electronics. Dennis Nilsen’s was done through murder and its aftermath.
“Give Me a Corpse” is the point where Atrax Morgue and Dennis Nilsen intersect. It opens “195 Melrose Avenue NW2” with a small rumble of bare synth, hardly there, then slowly we hear Marco announce his desire. Like all great Atrax Morgue, this feels as though it is unfolding as we hear it. We are eavesdropping voyeurs. We can explore our own obsessions with him. Maybe the obsession is the same. For Nilsen it certainly was. He once wrote, “I could only relate to a dead image of the person I could love.”
Corbelli’s world was never black and white. He said that he was the spot in-between. In one breath he goes into a “Blind Fury,” in the next breath, he’s the willing victim in “Crush my Cock.” Deathlust and sex, sadism and masochism, existing together within the same soul. Dennis Nilsen kept his victims close by because he did not want them to leave while Marco recorded his expressions so they could survive his mortal existence. Laid down decades ago, but still here for the rarefied pleasure that only exists when we truly give in and let go.
Marco’s synth was an extension of his heart. Vocal-less tracks like “MetalVibro” and “Beyond Pain” get to the same core that a track like “Troubled Meat” does. The fact that these do not contain vocals only amps up the mania. It is as if he were so consumed and immersed in passion that no words could be conjured. And when words are needed, Marco shows us his inner dimension. “She’s Dead (Now)” is being played out before our eyes. The lyrics are distilled down to a handful of words, but these are all that is necessary to paint the picture. A simple means for maximum effect.
The purity of Atrax Morgue cannot be understated. Corbelli allowed us into his world with no disclaimers, there is nothing to dress up this darkness. True, raw, and direct to an extent that rarely exists in any artform. Once the power was switched on there was no turning back. Obsession took control and we have this release as evidence– we are the eyewitnesses.
“195 Melrose Ave NW2” sits as a highlight in the Atrax Morgue catalog. Marco’s desires, pleasures, hate, and disgust are laid out and displayed for us to inspect. These eleven tracks are like the bodies buried under Nilsen’s floorboards, but Marco’s aims succeeded, whereas Nilsen’s did not. The bodies were taken away from Dennis Nilsen. Marco Corbelli’s work will always remain.
Originally released on Cassette by Self Abuse Records in 1996, Reissued on CD for the 25th anniversary by Self Abuse Records and Old Europa Cafe. Includes 3 bonus unreleased tracks recorded at the same time that Marco had sent Self Abuse.