Japanese Torture Comedy Hour – Voltage Monster (2006)

This was my first ever noise CD. I accidentally bought it before I’d even heard of the noise genre, let alone of Merzbow or any of his button-pushing, knob-twisting, pedal-stomping ilk. I bought this CD once upon a long time ago off the Relapse mail order, purely because Jay Randall was involved. Boy did I have a shock when I played the fucker! At 17 years old I was at no stage in my musical development to even fathom the existence of – let alone appreciate – something as downright artsy-fartsy and nihilistic as harsh noise.

If some beret-wearing hipster had told me: “You gotta look past it, maaaaaaan, to find the textures with the chaos, maaaaaaaaaaan, for each and every one of us interprets noise in a special cerebral way, maaaaaaan!” I would have set fire to his silly little beard and pushed the fucker down a flight of stairs. After insisting he shut the fuck up and listen to some goregrind, of course. However, as the existence of noise and power electronics as genres became apparent to me with time, I eventually remembered this prickly little CD gathering dust in my collection that I bought so many moons ago.

It suddenly all made so much sense! You’re right, potentially-imagined hipster with a silly beard! I can see (or is it hear?) the beauty within the chaos. I can interpret patterns and textures beneath the sea of mindfucking white noise like the best of ’em! Voltage Monster might not be as challenging or downright fucking insane as JTCH’s 24-hour song “Lost in Distortion”, but it is still as vicious, pairing the most head-frying harsh noise with the creepiest offerings of dark ambient. I’ll soon be running out of fancy adjectives so it’s probably better if I just shut up now and let you listen to the track below and be done with it. Open your ears, and your mind, maaaaaaaaan!