Politkovskaia +++ Cyclator
La Nomenklatur

Minamata - Politkovskaia
(CD + DVD, Les Nouvelles Propagandes / L.White Records)

It all starts with a Russian propaganda song about Jury Gagarin but then ut turns to pure electronical madness. Minamata mostly sounds like the record of a battle on this CD. Some would call it Power Electronics but it lacks of the typical wall-of-sound. Minamata is more sophisticated with rhythms, samples and kind of melody. But to sum it up, it's mostly chaotic and distorted close to the edge. So it's no "fun", listen to the French Industrialists and it's not even "dance music". I wouldn't even call it power electronics because of the lack of this typicla forward energy.
How should it be? "Politkovskaja" is dealing with all the dark sides of newer Russian history, from "Gulag" (concentration camps for political prisoners, mostly situated in Sibiria) via "Beslan" (the should out of Russian special forces with terrorists in a school, when more than 300 people were killed, mostly children) to "Politkovskaja" (the famous political journalist who was killed 2006 in Moscow). A lot of samples are used to illustrate this topics, Tiburce is shouting his lyrics over layers and layers of noises and atmospheres. It's all very claustrophobic, not even leading to a happy end at "Gasprom", the former state-run company, one of the worlds biggest extractor of natural gas and a tool of power in actual Russian politics...

The DVD is providing some impressions of different shows on the Minamata Russia tour in 2009, with the full show of Kazan. It's nice to see, what different situations the musicians have to deal with, how they travel and what technical and space conditions they find...


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Minamata - Cyclator (CD + DVD, Les Nouvelles Propagandes)

The "cyclator" was a device that the people were told, it saves them from the toxic mercury compound, responsible for all that damage. But it was a lie…
Very drastic artistic reprocessing of the history of Minamata disease and the failures of politics. The sound Minamata provides is not easy to classify. The pieces itself are brittle and mostly closer to harsh noise than industrial or even power electronics. There is only an idea of structure but more often it sounds chaotic like a natural disaster or war. Mixed with samples and classical music fragments, often added with ritualistic rhythms and painful shouting. Some ambient passages help to "relax" in-between.
Technically I have to state a lack of deeper frequencies - it all sound a little anemic without base, even on the regular pa. This seams to a problem of computer production...

The video on the DVD is very impressing, not by it's form but by it's content. It is the record of a show in Antwerp, shot with two or three cameras. So it's no big art, but a fine documentation of an amazing concert with Minamata and two traditional Japanese singers. Additionally you find the complete disturbing video screened for this show.

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