Masonna – Spectrum Ripper (1997)

Masonna (not to be confused of course, with Madonna) is a staple and legend in the noise world. He is “famed” for his intense live performances, where his body is seemingly nothing more than a channel for pure chaos; as if some invisible higher power is playing the poor guy like a marionette and pouring the result out as harsh noise. These performances can be seen on YouTube, thanks to the wonders of modern technology. Spectrum Ripper, is the perfect audio-only representation of the Masonna chaos, split into 25 parts of various lengths, but flowing as one misanthropic ear exploding performance.

It’s incredibly impressive when someone can carve their own sound out of of the harsh noise world; the scatty, super-distorted, vocal-led “pieces” are instantly recognisable despite being often imitated. It sounds like a cut and paste soundtrack to a descent into a mechanical hell, with delay pedals emphasising the machine-like repetition through the walls of sheer noise. Maybe it is hard to coin this a classic of the noise music / non-music genre, but this would do no wrong as a fantastic starting place for those curious to what noise is, or what it has to offer.