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Tag Archives: noise-and-powerelectronics

Capsule Reviews (vault): July, 2014

Peter D. Hipson, What Every Visual C++ 2 Programmer Should Know (Sams, 1994)


[originally posted 19Feb2002]

A "just the facts, ma'am" cover with the red title on a green background.

Even more dated now than when I wrote this review.
photo credit: ebay

What Every Visual C++ 2 Programmer Should Know is the perfect compliment to Gurewich and Gurewich’s Master Visual C++ 2. Both put out by Sams in the same year. Coincidence? Probably not. Everything the Gurewich book lacks is covered here. The detail and amount of code examples is lacking in comparison, but given the topics covered, that’s an excusable oversight.

What Every Visual C++ 2 Programmer Should Know looks at the more advanced features of Microsoft’s primary development platform: programming with Unicode, OLE, ODBC, multithreading, etc. It’s more a reference book than a how-to manual, but the user who’s followed and mastered the Gurewichs’ book should already have enough coding under his belt to integrate the information presented here without much trouble. The two books, taken together, provide the best introduction to Visual C++ 2 on the market, and are highly recommended for those still programming in DOS/Win3.x/Win95. *** ½

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One-Track Mind, vol. 4

A week late and a dollar short, but finally here…

STANDING DISCLAIMER: It would be ridiculous to try and do Full Disclosure on these. Just assume I know everyone here at least via the Internet, and most of them in person. You’ll be right far more often than wrong.

* * *

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An Exercise in Self-Worship (2001): Gather the Cultists

Rosemary Malign and the Eugenics Council/Facialmess, An Exercise in Self-Worship 7″ (Menschenfeind, 2001)

[originally posted 17Sep2001]

Watch where you stick that thing! photo credit: discogs.com

Watch where you stick that thing!
photo credit: discogs.com

Three long-ish tracks from two of the planet’s least politically correct bands (and we’re the better for that). Surprisingly low-key material from both—Facialmess tends to be unpredictable from release to release, and you never know what you’re going to get, but EC really goes beyond what we’ve heard from them in the past here. Give the pair some time to work with (as opposed to their usual sonic forays, which tend to be extremely short and painful—in a good sense, mind you) and they develop senses of dynamic, pitch, and even, god help us, organic rhythm. In true wall-o-noise fashion, things shift, rise, fall, twist, and lend a scree of order to the chaos of static in which they’re born and die. Gives the sense of being in a soundproof room on the ground floor in a building undergoing a scheduled demolition in time-lapse reality. Lovely. *** ½

Live Action 2 (1982): The Complete Birth of the Cool

Whitehouse, Live Action 2 (8 March 1982, Whisky a Go Go, London)

[originally posted 17Sep2001]

photo credit: nogoodcause.blogspot.com

We can’t show it to you because the Internet fails us (and it’s packed away somewhere I can’t easily get to it). It may no longer be available for sale in this format.

An unique live action, and actually more a 150 Murderous Passions live set than a Whitehouse effort. Bennett is joined by Steven Stapleton (Nurse with Wound) and Glenn Michael Wallis, and the trio perform what amounts to one long, ugly piece. It has less structure and definition than the 150MP studio recording did, but that makes it no less worthwhile. Stapleton, even though he was working in the same genre at the time, seemed to be something of a stabilizing influence on Bennett during the early years, and the two of them put together music stronger than anything either band came up with on their own before Whitehouse released New Britain. Look at LA2 as a kind of glimpse into the pool of ideas from which 150MP drew their inspiration and go from there. One of the better Whitehouse live action tapes. *** ½

Split (2000): Macho Energy

Sult/Luftkanone, split (Troniks, 2000)

[originally posted 17Sep2001]

photo credit: nogoodcause.blogspot.com

We can’t show it to you because the Internet fails us (and it’s packed away somewhere I can’t easily get to it).

I can’t think of two bands I’d be less inclined to put on a split cassette together. Sult do a kind of beat-laden not-quite-techno-not-quite-digital-hardcore most of the time, but “Human Swatting” takes the BPM up to such a level that it might as well be noise. There’s hope for this guy yet. (And the samples in “Macho Energy” are great.) Luftkanone, on the other hand, is the aural equivalent of the cheap, dirty, five-dollar crack whore who stands on the corner and tries to con schoolkids out of their lunch money to cop quick feels. It is my considered opinion that it is impossible to go wrong with anyone who would entitle a song “Horny Like a Rhino.” You may have turned up the tape player in order to dance to the Sult stuff (though dancing to beats that fast is more likely to look like a seizure), so be warned, your speakers or your eardrums, whichever is weaker, will blow when “skrm” starts up. Thick, ungainly noise, much softer than Kanone’s usual work but still hits the high notes often enough to cause pain if you’re not on your guard. “Horny Like a Rhino”: now this is the stuff. Imagine the sound of a metalgrinder cutting through a rack of full glass coke bottles, and then turn it way up and add the long drawn-out sounds of a swarm of bees puking after a long night of drinking. His side is capped off with “Sarah,” and I’m still wondering what he did with the bits he cut off in order to get some of the sounds on here. Dis good stuff! Go buy now! *** ½

Within the Nursery of Impossibilities (2000): I May Have Only Given It Three Stars but I Miss My Copy at Least Once a Week

Red Shirt Jamboree, Within the Nursery of Impossibilities (self-released, 2000)

[originally posted 17Sep2001]

photo credit: nogoodcause.blogspot.com

We can’t show it to you because the Internet fails us (and my copy is long gone).

Four long-ish tracks of academic noise with enough chaos/variation to keep the interest. Cold, almost clinical work, very unlike their live performances. Hard to define a “sound,” per se, as this stuff veers all over the map; the noise equivalent of John Watermann’s cut-ups. Probably more “accessible” to the general public than most noise, due to the brevity of the cassette itself and the lack of controversial subject matter. Quite listenable, as well. Worth a listen, assuming you can find a copy somewhere. ***

Right to Kill (1983): It’s Your Nature

Whitehouse, Right to Kill (Come Organisation, 1983)


[originally posted 17Sep2001]

A photo of serial killer Dennis Nilsen, and the title of the album, on a white background.

Start your own personal pinup gallery today!
photo credit: rateyourmusic.com

Even though only three hundred copies of this fabled LP were made, and Whitehouse have stated repeatedly that it will never be re-pressed (for once, that seems to actually be the case), Right to Kill has become one of Whitehouse’s most popular releases, probably because “Right to Kill” and “Tit Pulp” have been played at so many of Whitehouse’s live shows. Bootleg cassettes of the album have spread around the world, and by now should be in the hands of most Whitehouse fans. Outside the community, as well, the album has achieved some kind of mythic status, mostly because of the insane sums of money hardcore collectors will pay to get their hands on one of the original three hundred.

That said, it’s an early-period (June 1983) Whitehouse album, the band’s eighth release. In other words, don’t expect it to sound much different than the other early-period Whitehouse releases. The unmistakable high-pitched squeals of the EMS Wasp synth run through a phaser and heavily-treated vocals from Tomkins, Bennett, and Best. It’s nice to hear Right to Kill in its studio version, but much of this can be found a whole lot cheaper by picking and choosing cassettes of the live actions (available for six pounds per from http://www.susanlawly.com). If you really need a copy, scam a dub from one of your Whitehouse-loving friends, but on the whole you’re probably better off spending less money and picking up a copy of one of the more accessible early-period releases, e.g. New Britain or Dedicated to Peter Kurten. *** ½