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Vainio and Vigroux – Peau Froide, Lèger Soleil / Franck Vigroux and Matthew Bourne – Radioland: Radio-Activity Revisited

Cosmo Rhythmatic

Vainio & Vigroux - Peau Froide, Lèger SoleilIt really makes a huge amount of sense for Mika Vainio and Franck Vigroux to have made Peau Froide, Lèger Soleil together, especially considering the latter’s storming Centaure 12″ of a year or so ago. There, Vigroux mashed up the hardest of beats in a welter of analogue electronics that bore easy and justifiable comparison to Vainio’s former outfit Pan Sonic; together they make a heavily textural collaboration which unfolds with a wheezing, shuffling sense of palpable heaviness and weighty atmospherics.

Replete with all manner of weighty analogue oscillator drones and the crunchiest of crunchy rhythms, the album unfolds in a gathering swarm of delayed hissing snippets, sliding bass tones, cinematic dynamics and an ever-present sense of

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Carter Tutti/Mika Vainio (live at Heaven)

Chris n Cosey @ HeavenLondon 19 May 2013

Stuck in traffic, time was slipping away from us like a buttery thing, a total nightmare as impatient idiots decided to forge an extra lane in front, and I’m behind this person in a huge sports car that was probably twice the price of my house! He’s busy checking the mirrors – for gazes of envy, no doubt – I feel like making silly faces in response, but Robby Shackleton‘s E-jack was on the stereo, those wayward charms drifting out through the open windows, doing an ace job of crushing any sort of misconception.

After kerb crawling for what seemed an eternity we reached Battersea power station and an open road, arriving at Heaven just in time to check out the final embers

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Nurse With Wound/Mika Vainio & Bruce Gilbert/Radian (live at Koko)

Koko London 15 May 2011

Loved the minimal post rock vibes of the opening act Radian – that 23 Skidoo ethnicity and those broken This Heat narratives were riddled with an exciting unpredictability, each track, a scattered jigsaw filled with unusual colours and textures, oozing a restrained intent that was really impressive.

Bruce GilbertBruce Gilbert and Pan Sonic‘s Mika Vainio were next on the bill. Introducing themselves in a short burst of hi-end pierce that got the crowd cheering. They continued with a Malaysian flavoured ambience, a gigantic staked beauty, fluttering like a quartz split mouth of the night, later molested in high pitched scars. Then the beats kicked in, like sacks of liquidised potatoes slapping all hardcore, whirring on the rebound, turning the rainbows of electro abstraction into a lush avant-club land, the

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Mika Vainio – Kajo

Label: Touch Format: CD

Kajo - sleeve More than just Pan(a)Sonic without the bass oscillations, Mika Vainio‘s second solo outing still bears obvious connections to his work with Ilpo Vaisanen on their last album release under that name as A , a recording which featured moments of unsettling stillness and texture among the distened beats and noise. Naturally, it’s also more about making a different kind of sound to Pan Sonic’s – wavering, exploratory, semi-consciously aware of the noises Vainio is mixing into the listening environment. Headphones are one thing, but putting Kajo among the hummings of fridge mechanisms, birdsong, passing cars and train horns is as vital as settling down for an intense listen in a darkened, soundproof room.

Turn it up loud, and some of the pieces here become truly unsettling, as wafts of electronic movement summon pre-linguistic eminences of the

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Vainio, Väisänen, Vega – Endless

Label: Mute Format: CD

Vainio, Vaisanen, Vega - EndlessAs acerbic as their recent gigs together, the collaboration of Alan Vega with two-thirds of Pan Sonic shows that the loss of a vowel has not affected the latter’s ability to construct minimal sinewave beats and blasts, nor the former’s anomic bile against The Man and his system. While the Finns lay down the tearing glitches, chundering basslines and hard stepping thuds of analogue synthesis, Vega throws his vocal rage into the echobox in his accustomed darkside Elvis manner.

Each of the participants have the capacity for repetitive outpourings which risk the induction of boredom, looked at coldly. Cycling loops of monotonous noise; whoops and moans bouncing off the walls – a recipe for misunderstanding of the process. Well, if Endless appears stale, there’s a simple

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Vainio, Vaisanen, Vega (live)

Irregular The Africa Centre, London 2nd July 1998

Having sat throught he absence of promised DJ Holger Hiller – and hence a repeated digi-dub tape instead – the appearance onstage of two-thirds of Pan Sonic presaged the arrival of Alan Vega. Strutting with his customary swagger, and dressed like a heavy-metal Guardian Angel in shades, Vega launched into his set while his collaborators manipulated the sliders, twiddled the knobs and produced an unholy racket to disturb the surrounding converted non-conformist meeting hall which is now The Africa Centre.

Unlike the recent Suicide gigs, there was no violent response to the stares, poses and screams of Vega forthcoming from the crowd, whose demeanour was rather respectful in the face of a true rock and roll hero working outside his usual framework. Perhaps it was the slightly anonymous presence of Mika Vainio and Ilpo Vaisanen, as opposed to the leather-clad stances

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