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Nadja/Kodiak – (split album)

Denovali

Available on both heavyweight vinyl as a proper double-sided split LP and the more prosaic, though no less lovingly-packaged CD edition, this record serves partly as yet another waypoint on Nadja‘s seemingly unstoppable mission to collaborate with every possible combination of drone/doom-mongers across the known and occasionally unknown world.

It also contains Kodiak‘s “MCCCXLIX The Rising End,” a piece which starts off in a slow accretion of guitar-bridge feedback and cymbal-bowed disharmonies, before the rising swell of harmonics explodes into a slow doom-laden grind worthy of Corrupted. The clang of guitars is drowned comprehensively in effect-pedal sussurus, smothering and intense, the drums providing a intermittent markers on the way to riffs of such sporadic heaviness that would make Earth proud before a time-stealing descent into isolated piano strokes and eventual blessed quietness.

Nadja’s “Kitsune (Fox Drone)” is a beautifully thick serving of guitar tone and texture, spread densely in a rich layer of slowly-phased noise from speaker to speaker. Wall of sound never seemed so appropriate a term, though in this case it’s on a glacial scale, with the thunderous sound of icebergs crushing all before their sheer immensity replicated in an immersive soundscape which makes for a particularly effective audio barrier, comfortably numbing all other sound sources in its immediate vicinity. Avoiding or ignoring the almost physical presence of Nadja is effectively pointless – and in any case, who would want to?

-Richard Fontenoy-

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