New material from the mysterious Civilistjavel! to inaugurate the FELT label. Lonely, frost-bitten soundscapes upon a permafrost of dub..(Mint / New)
There isn’t much to go on other than the soundscapes when it comes to Civilistjävel! What is rumoured to be a figment of the pre-internet era tapping into a similar consciousness as Biosphere, Chain Reaction or early Fax +49-69/450464 is ultimately left up to second guessing. For the average listener crossing paths with the project, a steady run of small-run, minimally packaged LPs has cemented Civilistjävel! as a leading force in the dub techno/glacial drone scene of present.
However niche that may sound, this collection of tracks for Perko’s new FELT imprint navigates the same territories as the previous outings but with the folkloric tag “Iron Night” to help guide our ears. A Swedish expression for long nights of frost that damage plants and crops, the spectral and foreboding atmosphere of the opening cut already hints at the direction of the album. Combining dense ambient synth layers with hard to place industrial motifs (sometimes in rhythm, sometimes chaotically arranged are what Civilistjävel! does best, indeed Järnnätter unfolds as a piece of work you can really spend time with. At points it feels as if the machines in some old factory complex have spluttered back to life through some unknown force and have begun to sing to one another. Other times the atmosphere is akin to a hydrophone placed deep into an ice-covered lake and the synthetic pulses of ‘A2’ are the only vaguely human touch. However, the sparse melodic flourishes across the record stem from an interest in psalms and early Swedish folk music, the juxtaposition of machine-led intuition and personable studiousness adding a hidden depth to the album.