Friday, 9 May 2014

White Hospital - Holocaust

'Holocaust'
White Hospital
1984

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Power Electronics, Industrial
For Fans Of: Whitehouse, Sutcliffe Jugend, Throbbing Gristle, Ramleh, Psychick Youth

Japan is not a place you'd normally associate with first wave of power electronics - I'm more used to hearing about the emerging 'Japanoise' scene and it's migration over to America - yet here we are with what is essentially a first wave power electronics release from a Japanese band.
White Hospital were comprised of Jun Konagaya and Tomasada Kuwahara, and unfortunately they didn't stick around very long, releasing only this album and the excellently titled 'We Wish You Are Merry Christmas' 7". Despite this very short lifespan, White Hospital did produce what I think is one of the most creative and innovative industrial releases of its time, melding tribal rhythms, field recordings, sampling, primitive synth lines and screeching feedback into a volatile and often creepy miasma of sound. Holocaust's biggest strength is its juxtaposition of quieter passages with the louder ones, balancing eerie, menacing ambient with apocalyptic, harsh industrial soundscapes. The vocals, on the few tracks where they appear, are venomous and distorted beyond all recognition and tend to follow the rhythm of the song, rather than be the focal point.
Definitely not your average power electronics release, if anything I'd say it has more in common with Throbbing Gristle/Psychick Youth and the tribal noise that Whitehouse have been pedaling as of late.

TRACKLISTING:
1. Hymn Of Heaven
2. Robotomy Operation
3. Body And Flesh
4. Transfer-15
5. Holocaust (Live)
6. Ginny Voice
7. Fair Warning
8. White Hospital

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