Genre: Industrial / Noise
01) Exposing the Ribcage
Exposing the Ribcage is a collaborative effort between the darkened like-minds of Harlow MacFarlen of dark ambient / industrial nightmare project Sistrenatus, and Josh Rose and Sam McKinlay of BT.HN. (also known as False Creak when teamed up with NFW/Taskmaster). Both artists have already had relative success in their respective projects, with Macfarlen having released twice under Sistrenatus on Cold Spring and once on the French label Hermetique (that is owned by Jérôme Nougaillon of Propergol). This, of course, is away from his well-known venture into the world of ritual black ambiance in Funerary Call, a relatively underrated project from labels like Fall of Nature and Nuclear War Now! On the other side of the coin is BT.HN., whom have worked with the likes of PACrec, Dogma Chase (a limited vinyl label featuring artists like Bizarre Uproar and Sutcliffe Jügend) and the absurdly prolific label Chronditic Sound. This doesn’t even begin to go into Sam McKinlay’s work with The Rita, whom has had another prolific career through that project, releasing an immense amount of material over the past 14 years with RRRecords, No Fun Productions, Self Abuse, and SNSE. Needless to say, this is a live meeting of two literal powerhouse projects.
The album doesn’t waste any time getting down to business, with the volume quickly swelling to bring about a wall of industrial noise. Hollow tubular sounds immediately pair up with strong pulsating rhythms and high-pitched chirping. This segment specifically mocks the image on the front cover of lines, whether they be cyber or medical, feeding directly into and exposed female chest. The heart races, blood fills the hollow tubes and exits. The hollow sounds subside, leveling out into a flat-line under the buzzing sound and chaotic experience of reaching unconsciousness. Chaos eventually subsides into a powerful duo of static noise and a droning bass-end layer that makes only enough room in the stretch of sound for mechanical high-pitched noise tweaking, which at times can be compared to electrocardiography machines powering down. Towards the 22-23 minute mark though, the heartbeat and ECG bleeps arise briefly before fading into the returning chaotic oblivion. What we seem to be getting from Sistrenatus on this collaboration is the style of in-your-face drone that tracks like Wolf Furnace and Frequency Contamination exhibit, without his trademark bombastic, percussive industrial ferocity and random harsh noise spasms. Rather, the noise is less harsh and far from spastic, falling in line with a strangely (and, probably, ironic) well-flowing collaboration. It would seem that most of the harsh elements mimick the style found on BT.HN.’s releases, with distorted, delayed, and reverbed intensity, at least regarding the Retrospective-era of BT.HN.
Combined with the theme presented by the album artwork, you can’t help but be influenced by the physical, medical, and subconscious implications involved with this recording. However, it doesn’t seem that fans of the harsher aspects of noise would be all that satisfied with this release. Exposing the Ribcage is noise integrated with a death industrial atmosphere, therefore it remains in line with a darker mood and approach than you would typically see, but also comes with a more basic, less frantic composition. Exposing the Ribcage is a Pro CD-R that comes in a metallic Silver and Gold printed, heavy black stock gatefold sleeve. Each copy is individually stamp-numbered up to its limitation of 250 copies. This was #210.