Tapes of a Neon God: #15 / #17 / #18
Tapes of a Neon God have new items, so if you didn’t get enough when the giveaway was going on or you’re interested in what Anderson’s been toiling at, then read on.
The Tennessee label has a love for unlovable, grueling sounds and an aptness when it comes to vivid enclosures and analog formats. Pick up any record they’ve been involved with and it’s clear they have their heart in it and have an eye for it too.
Here with a four-way noise split between Churchdweller, Hadals, Void En Vogue, and Winter Ritual, as well as Yautja’s unstoppable new record, and the queasy yet gripping noisecore of Idyll’s latest, Tapes of a Neon God bring the quality once more.
All three limited, all three infused with love and loathing.
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TOANG #15: Churchdweller/Hadals/Void En Vogue/Winter Ritual
First is a split from a spread of noise artists. This is something TOANG has done before and with success so you’ll be pleased to know this round is no different. The styles and atmospheres however do vary on each track and with this latest split combining Churchdweller, Hadals (Austin of Japanese Women and Anderson who runs the label), Void En Vogue, and Winter Ritual the palate of agonizing, spellbinding noise and power electronics has good reach.
Churchdweller come at you with a murky and distant throbbing anxiety of “Descent” that rolls echoing and burning for seven minutes. Hadal’s tags them with a one part eerie stillness, one part nerve-grating electronic violence, continuing their vile tradition through “180 Gram Runed Skull”. It’s maniacal noise. Feedback and barbaric, intense walls unrestrained in chaos, testing your will with abhorrent and obscured vocals.
The final tracks bring out the trance-inducing death industrial. Void En Vogue’s piece “Mean Girls” might be the most absorbing. Haunting, cyclical, slowly shuddering apart; industrial marching for five minutes. Winter Ritual is not far behind with a seven minute conjuring called “False Mask”. It compliments “Mean Girls” well, quieter and spreading out with a loop of scratching. It becomes insulated by a growing darkness invading the space; buzzing friction and isolated.
When it comes to packaging, as mentioned, it’s hard to top TOANG. This split shows the level of care. From the stark and vibrant j-card (front and back) to the neon magenta-purple cassette shell enclosing the turmoil, stamped uniquely in flat gold text there’s nothing about this that feels hollow. Attractive despite the ugly nature of the craft it holds.
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TOANG #17: Yautja – Songs of Descent
At this point if you haven’t given Yautja’s latest endeavor at least a peak then I don’t know what I could say to convince you. It’s nasty. Arguably anyone reading this intently will already know it’s a brutal record and is a little upset that the special editions of the vinyl sold out immediately in most places. But fear not because TOANG have brought their groove-grind death collapse to another analog format, and brilliantly too.
The fourteen tracks on Songs of Descent have not lessened in their impact from my perspective, but hearing them on tape brings a new warmth. Not to mention the pretty powder purple cassette shell and gold emblazoning both sides. The j-card holds the cover art of the original pressings while a nice folded insert card contains lyrics and more art.
The small touches in the tape version of Songs of Descent make this version special even when looking at the LP’s already lovely design. I suggest if you missed it on vinyl or just prefer tape then get on this now.
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TOANG #18: Idylls – Prayer For Terrene
Finally there’s Idylls’ disorienting new album Prayer For Terrene. It’s one more step in their unique noisecore style. Take elements of weird shredders like Daughters and mutate that with the fury of Converge and Great Falls and you get an idea as to what Idylls are playing at.
With Prayer For Terrene the formula continues to tighten, coiling into nauseating typhoons of noisy erraticisms. They take a few moments to build larger squalls which are impressive, the track “PCP Crazy” and opener “Lied To” in particular, with the remainder of the tracks as smaller slices with no less jarring angular beauty.
Prayer For Terrene’s packaging is like the two other new tapes, unique and bold. The cover for this version is a different image: what looks like clothes strewn on a dark yet stone-sparkling beach. At first I thought the blue patches were jellyfish but I think I’m mistaken.
Outside of the otherworldly cover the tape itself is a deep neon blue inked on both sides in white. It really stand out and to fits the tone of the record. Along with the j-card (which on the reverse has the original cover art, beetlejuice-ghost-in-a-lake) there’s a sharp insert card with that original cover art on one side and lyrics/credits on the other.
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As you can see Tapes of a Neon God are still doing shit right. I recently picked up all three with no hesitation or regrets. Head over to Tapes of a Neon God’s store and purchase what you see here before these limited tapes are completely gone.