Fragmented Frequencies June 2014

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I first met Drew Daniel (Matmos) earlier this year at Mona Foma, where he DJ’d confusing psychedelic beats and weirdness in a replica space shuttle. At the time we were both still smarting over an incredible set by Taswegian black metal legend Striborg, and he confessed to being a huge fan having religiously collected his music for years. So it comes as little surprise that some 5 months later in his solo guise Soft Pink Truth he’s elected to tackle the genre head on, creating noisy house music covers of black metal icons from Venom to Darkthrone by way of Hellhammer. For Daniel who came to electronic music via punk and industrial, it’s simultaneously a homage and a provocative smart bomb, destined to be lobbed in the midst of this bleak, at times racist and homophobic genre to highlight, and in fact send up many of these ridiculous elements. With his excessively earnest, excessively camp, over the top vocals and beats, he’s suggesting it’s okay to buy into the music without purchasing the bullshit. Oh, and it’s hilarious, particularly when you’re trying to reconcile the moments where you feel like you’ve been transported into a mid 90’s rave at a gay nightclub where the moans of ecstasy intermingle with deep deathly growls and the soul siren’s vocals are about rotting flesh. Why Do The Heathens Rage? Electronic Profanations of Black Metal (Thrill Jockey) is not the first time someone has messed with the laws of black metal, but it is the funniest and most accomplished.

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