Decondition – Sukellan Tuntemattomiin Syvyyksiin CD Nuit Et Brouillard 2014
Decondition are a Finnish project previously unknown to these ears, although a prior cassette ‘The Universal Nothingness’ was released by Freak Animal back in 2006. Evidently the 13 tracks featured here were recorded during various sessions both prior to and after ‘The Universal Nothingness’ sessions, and with the title translating to ‘I Dive into Unknown Depths’ it appears a hefty dose of nihilism is the conceptual underpinning of the album. To provide a quick overview of their approach, Decondition inhabit a sonic realm which is an amalgam of overblown distortion, off kilter factory clatter, clanging junk metal arrhythmia and occasional segments of respite.
From the opening passages of the album the crumbling waves of distortion and squalling static articulate the sonic timbre of harsh noise, yet there is a semblance of structure due to cyclic loops, imbedded samples and occasional barrage of unintelligible aggressive vocals which provides an industrial verging on power electronics angle to the sound. The third track functions to prove this point, where when ‘Dark Clouds Over My Inner Landscape’ arrives it demonstrates a focused, loosely rhythmic and pulsing power electronics track. Despite it clattering intensity mid album piece ‘Disease Within’ manages a partially meditative quality, which is mostly due to its grinding cement mixer rhythmic loops (…as agonised vocals yell a sermon of angst and inner turmoil). ‘Wheel of Change/ Passage of Time’ is another standout due to it pulling back on the heady distortion of preceding material, instead utilising a rhythmic militant industrial approach. Late album track ‘Aistiharhojen Luoma Todellisuus [ Sukellan Tuntemattomiin Syvyyksiin ]’ is another example of restraint (and one of the longer album tracks at just six and a half minutes), with a subdued soundscape of cavernous industrial drones and slowly manipulating textures. This paring back of intensity bleeds into to the final album track ‘Deep Sleep In My Dreams’, but on this piece accommodates a more suitably drugged and hazy atmosphere to match its title.
On a cursory level this album appears rather punishing and admittedly Decondition do deliver a strong set of industrial/ noise/ power electronics for the underground genre fanatic (which is further complimented with suitable decaying factory images). Yet there is also clear variation to be discovered within its general harsh abrasiveness. In effect this is a solid, hour’s length album of noisy, distorted, arrhythmic to rhythmic industrial noise abuse, mixed with elements of power electronics aggression and offset by moments of restraint.