Kjetil D Brandsdal – Freedom Waaaoh Waaoh (Corpus Hermeticum, 1998)

Kjetil D Brandsdal
Freedom Waaaoh Waaoh

CD Corpus Hermeticum Hermes028 (New Zealand, 09-1998)

01. Mekrer
02. Beveren
03. Ja
04. Spor 4
05. Spor 7
06. Spor 8
07. III

The name of Kjetil D. Brandsdal has been bandied about the world increasingly over the last couple of years. Of Norwegian origin, though resident for the last three years or so in Northern Ireland, Kjetil has carved quite a niche for himself as a ‘sound artist’. Exhibiting a sterling self-reliance, he emerged first via a slew of self-released cassettes (about ten in all), then followed these with two self-released LPs and a slew of singles on labels such as Boblador, MykeDroner, and Betley Welcomes Careful Drivers. The LPs were manufactured in editions of 300, and got snapped up pretty damn fast, but not before he sent one to H-Corp HQ in the far antipodes. The CD currently under consideration was the natural result, once the Hermetically-tuned ears of the corporation got a whiff of the lo-fi, droning, tape-looped improv. spew that Kjetil was purveying, it was a done deal. The Freedom CD compiles choice tracks from both LPs, KDB and Kjetil D. Brandsdal, but also features the full-length version of ‘III’, originally restricted to just one whole LP side, it now closes the CD at a full 35 minutes. The recorded pieces are devoid of drums, most rhythms coming from tape loops or guitar parts, and generally levitate the consciousness pretty effectively in a ceilingwards direction. Production appears to be on porta-studio in most cases, and headphone listening reveals some pretty cool mix-work in a style not a million miles from our own Omit, but retaining a unique Nordic ‘grittiness’ in sound. (Forced Exposure)

From opposite ends of the earth, Norway’s guitarist and sound sculptor Kjetil D. Brandsdal and New Zealand’s Corpus Hermeticum label found common ground in the forging of new sonic territory with this release. In a limited-edition, this elegantly packaged CD features the Nordic experimenter going into some dark feedback and noise territory, with guitar and electronics as the sources. As difficult and simultaneously charming as anything coming from Bruce Russell’s label, Freedom Waaoh Waaaoh recalls Robert Fripp and Brian Eno on « No Pussyfooting » in parts, if one can imagine that record made in more primitive home-recording conditions. This candid setting does offer a great deal to the music, creating an intimacy and ad-hoc attitude that is revealing of an innovative artist. If a little self indulgent, the overall ambience is one of noisy experimentation in the vein of Total and Richard Youngs. (Skip Jansen, Allmusic)

Un son claustrophobique qui semble provenir d’une cassette enregistrée dans un silo pendant une coupure d’électricité, des emballages cartonnées qu’on est fier de posséder dans ses rayonnages, Corpus Hermeticum avait tout du label culte. Et c’est surtout un label dont l’esthétique est toujours aussi pertinente aujourd’hui.

Visit Kjetil D Brandsdal or Corpus Hermeticum
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