Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Sweetness of Sickness
Genres: Alternative Rock, World Music, Jazz, Pop, Rock
Hilarious, sad, brash, grating, mesmeric, bracing, wondrous
Jan P. Dennis | Monument, CO USA | 02/05/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Warning! Contains sounds proven to thaw frozen door locks, peel paint at a thousand yards (or is it IN a thousand yards--simultaneously--in suburban elay?--or, perhaps, peal bells at a thousand yards??), and scramble neural connections beyond restoration, the aural equivalent to the visual process Neal Stephenson describes in Snow Crash. Which is just to say that this is not music in any ordinary sense. Yet it makes more sense than a lot of ordinary music. In spots--no, just about all the time--it almost sounds as if Evyind Kang is the worst Suzuki student ever to take up the violin, what with the tonal waffling, anti-harmonies, scratchy sawing--is he channeling Jack Benny, or what?? Yet we know he can play conventionally beautifully; check out his playing with Bill Frisell, Andrew Drury, and Briggan Krauss, among others. Here, he just chooses not to most of the time. He also gets more tonal variation from his violin than anyone else in the history of Western music, making it sound, by turns, like a peskily buzzing bee ("Dancing Flowers"), a Stealth Bomber just firing up its engines (same cut), faux-demented fugal madness ("Disco Bhanga"), a cranky bear just waking from hibernation ("Flesh Resonations"; OK, I've never heard a bear waking from hibernation, but I imagine this is what it would sound like), a barking dog (same cut), a train wreck (same cut), Jimi Hendrix on steroids (same cut), a badly played saw (same cut--lots of tonal variety on this one), the theme to a demented marionette production (same cut), a buzz saw (same cut), a passle of falling-down-drunk clowns having just taken up the instrument for the first time ("Oracion," which is the Middle English word for prayer; one wonders, a prayer to whom and for what?), a pack of robot coyotes mating (or maybe being run over en masse by a phalanx of Cadillac Escalades) ("Liza"), pigs being slaughtered ("Giving Up Completely"), those annoying tones you hear during dial-up internet connections (same cut), flipping the dial on your radio when its turned up full blast (same cut), the heaviest death metal band ever ("The Cruel One"). Plus, lots of other even weirder, literally indescribable sounds. The closing chorus of duck calls, sax, piano, and other unidentifiable instruments on "Oracion" may be the most beautiful, cacophonous, yearning, melancholy sound ever captured on disc. Also included, just for fun, is 24 seconds of the silliest calypso ever ("Summons").A program note: My media player lists, without naming them, 16 tracks, but there are only 15 tracks, not numbered, listed on the back of the CD case, so its likely that most or all the above descriptions don't correspond to the right tracks. And that's OK because there's so much aural craziness here already that wrong attributions would just be a kind of frosting on this sonic mayhem.The vibe reminds me of Trout Mask Replica. Not really deconstructionist; just celebrating the clash and thrum of thousands of different sounds. Kang plays all the instruments (not listed, but including, one supposes, guitars, synthesizers, modulators, percussion, piano, and lots of other stuff). Obviously, not for everyone--indeed, probably not for any but the hardiest and heartiest souls out there, who are willing to shed all preconceptions of what good music should be, and desire to be led down a sonic rabbit hole of astounding proportions.Finally, I admit a little of this can go a long way. It's certainly not the kind of thing I generally select when I've got a hankering to listen to jazz--even outrageously out jazz. But I also have to say it's growing on me, hopefully not like a fungus . . . In any case, when I get the dough, I'm definitely picking up his NADEs stuff."
A strange yet interesting work
Jan P. Dennis | 10/01/1998
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The first thing you hear when you put in Eyvind Kang's "Sweetness Of Sickness" doesn't exactly compell you to keep listening. The first track "The Eternity" seems like something of a noisefest, but the beautiful NADE theme emerges from the storm. This is the basic concept here, finding sweetness under the sickness, and for the most part it is quite effective. The album isn't for everyone, you probably should have pretty twisted tastes if you're planning to enjoy it. For something slightly easier on the ears, check out Kang's "Theatre Of Mineral NADEs" on Tzadik."