Rubbed Raw / Volume IV: deranged outsider noise electronics skating close to madness and chaos

Rubbed Raw, “Volume IV”, Ormolycka, cassette (2013)

Wacky sped-up chipmunk vocals and glitchy rubber electronics herald this collection of often creepy electronics that almost verges on noise, isolationist dub and Whitehouse-styled power electronics. I have no idea who Rubbed Raw are and what connection they have to a character called Big Daddy Nugg who died in his early 40s in 2010, whether this person was a member of the band, a friend or a major inspiration. The A-side of the recording early on is dominated by a pounding percussion, wobbly watery sounds and deranged guitar feedback drone in parts, followed by a vigorous rhythmic stroll of more blaring industrial-sounding noise electronics with just a dash of techno thrown in. A later track consists of a spoken-voice recording overlaid by shimmering echo that renders the voice alien and sinister, and a quivering guitar feedback drone solo, leading into what sounds like a peculiarly sanitised exchange of gunfire as imagined on laptops and PCs.

Side-B is no less weird or abrasive with occasional rhythm loop forays into something quite funky and almost worthy of admission into dance clubs without fear of being thrown out by bouncers. Blasts of industrial-strength steel noise, searing guitar feedback drone and effects that fly in and out hold you spellbound. This is quite a short side compared to the A-side.

Although this recording seems very lo-fi, the composition, arrangement and execution of the sounds, rhythms, beats and field recordings are excellent and suggest the musicians, amateurs though they might consider themselves, have quite a long history of performing original music. The music is very edgy, skating very close to the jagged point of a sheer drop down into machine noise chaos. There’s a sense of the music being very deranged due to its extreme isolation from familiar music networks; that deranged attitude elevates the sounds into feverish paranoia territory. It can be terrifying to hear and it’s sure to warp your brain the more you listen to it. How can I get more of this stuff?

Contact: Ormolycka, PO Box 649, New York, NY 10163, USA

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