Dave Phillips – Homo Animalis (2CD  Schimpfluch Associates) 

One of the first releases on the new label Schimpfluch Associates is also a superb one. This double CD truly is a mindfuck with that same terrifying atmosphere as for example Vagina Dentata Organ’s Trained to Kill, in which the only sound present is a rottweiler in a not too good mood. The sheer fear comes with an unprecedented intimacy, as if every track produced meant sacrificing a piece of self or implied some automutulation. Dark beauty with a highly physical feel, although luckily not with the typical Austrian gore aspect he sometimes gets involved with together with Rudolf Eb.er and the likes. A lot of time must have been spent in creating this quilted patchwork of lust, mapping the souls’ darkest corners and even beyond.  

The supporting theory (or non-theory) of humanimal makes a lot of effort in explaining and justifying our right to behave like animals rather than any higher being. The booklet reads like a cornucopia of good intentions, logic and justice, with insights as “Humanimal knows that reality often is a projected and brittle proposition, a collective belief, a brisk confidence in one’s own mind that works as a disguise’, but starts to become questionable when ‘Humanimal experiences the mind as one closest ally and also as one’s worst enemy’ even to end rather silly and meaningless with statements like ‘Humanimal figures that since each being has just one life and since we all share the same planet that it’s about time we learned to get along’.   

Also the music (indicated as one of the favorite communication means of humanimal) is mere instinctive and purely based on reflex than anything else. And that makes Homo Animalis with lengthy atmospheric bestial outings an intriguing listening, as the electronic intimate abstractions, aural riddles and low-key noise bursts, industrial sounding perversions and other condensed emotions on this double CD in the end are much more subtle than for example Merzbow’s tributes to animal sounds. PvdG

Contact: schimpflu.ch/associates