Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Nero's Day at Disneyland, "Colonists" 3" cd (EMR Records, 2007)

Nero's Day At Disneyland, Colonists 3" cd
EMR Records, 2007

To get this started, let me say that I'm pretty removed from this current Captain Ahab-led Ravesploitation thing. Not that I have anything against it, but as I never had a raver phase, or, was never really interested in any aspect of rave culture beyond its associations with Digital Hardcore, Industrial, and Ambient music, I can't really appreciate much of the somewhat sub-ironic re-interest in "nu" rave. That said, any new artist who can give Venetian Snares a hyper-speed musical run for his money has got my immediate attention, and that artist is Nero's Day At Disneyland.

Now, if I've got your attention: here's where you may be disappointed (or, where you and I differ in opinion). When I say that Nero's Day At Disneyland is growing steadily on-par with the nigh-inimitable work of Venetian Snares, I mean that in the sense of Aaron Funk's current work. That means: Pink & Green, the Hospitality E.P., and Cavalcade of Glee and Dadaist Happy Hardcore Pom Poms, not his earlier, harder, or more esoteric works like Songs About My Cats, Winter In the Belly of a Snake, or Winnipeg Is A Frozen Shithole. Sorry if it seems like this review is turning into a Nero's Day At Disneyland sounds just like (insert artist here) name-drop session, but it's been my opinion for a while that Venetian Snares has been light-years ahead of the competition for half a decade, and I'm very excited to see someone come out of the underground who may usurp his crooked crown.

So, what are the signatures of his sound? What differentiates our hero Nero from the ever-prolific Funk? Brevity, for one. There are eight tracks on the 3" Colonists cd-r, and, with the exception of album's closing track, "Shamu Wraith", few of them are more than two minutes in length, causing the cd to blur past in a attention-deficit stream of orchestral swelling and sweeps, mangled blasts of circuit-bent gabber beats, and cut-up noise collage. At this rate, Nero's Day at Disneyland manages to jam more ideas into a single song than virtually any beat-oriented group I could compare him to, and that includes Venetian Snares. Not only does the Colonists cd tort the cohesion and studio fine-tuning that typically would accompany a longer or more official full-length release, it announces that there's a new kid on the block: and he's the kind that lives to start fires.

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