There seems to be a tendency as of late to operate well within the lower frequencies within the current power electronics scene. Artists make entire albums of simmering broodiness, loaded with personal vague content whilst experimenting with restraint in the quieter depths of noise. When it’s done well (Shift, Stark, She Spread Sorrow), it’s truly, impressively great. However, when it’s not done so well, it’s straight onto the Discogs marketplace to hopefully gain some financial compensation for what just happened to my ears.
Thankfully, Kadaver seems unaware of this latter style and exists completely at the opposite end of the spectrum. I didn’t know what had hit me as Hypothermiasma began on the headphones with a complete hellish assault of screaming and rumbling noise. There is an extreme digital violence to be found on ‘Popcorpse’, and while I’ve heard a lot of tedious techno noise lately, this track carves up harsh sounds and creates a rhythm through reassembled rhythmic sounds. This is digital cut up used to impressive effect, and the approach occurs several times across the album.
There are passages that appear to be geared towards harsh noise wall, but there is also a further bludgeoning of the senses lurking with some good layering, particularly on ‘Self Inflicted Decapitation’. Samples are used several times here to build urgency and tension, and acting as the glue that links everything together.
This is an album of experimentation that yields plenty of results. ’23 Shades of Decomposition’ slows things down into a bizarre, warped sermon of decomposition. The track is then obscured by concise overlapping of harsh frequencies that allows parts of the sermon to glimpse through. ‘Maruta’ continues this method but is determined to outdo previous tracks where insanity and violence are concerned. It makes for an effective use of terrified screams, echoes, reduction, and reintroduction of elements. The methods of experimentation do shift a lot, delivering a range of work that totally disallows any formula to take precedence.
I approached Kadaver thinking it would be one style of noise as, visually, it seems to present itself as a straightforward death industrial project. It isn’t. There are fragments of many genres like laptop noise, power electronics, industrial, American-style noise, and death industrial among many others, but they are all cleverly dismantled and put together as something else. I believe this to be complimented by a good shit filter and a creative use of reassembly. Hypothermiasma knows when to pull back, but manages to consistently stay interesting. I am left curious throughout its entirety. I can’t help but ask myself: Is the rest of the discography this good? Is this album the best that Kadaver has to offer? I don’t know, but I am keen to find out more about Kadaver. This, along with Stark’s Hyena, is my favourite release of 2017 so far.