“Space Trash”, the fourth album by Austrian band villalog, plays with bending and distorting coordinates of space and time. Whereas their last album, “Cosmic Sister”(2009) was more of a space-disco sci-fi trip, the new album, “Space Trash”, looks pointedly towards the earth. As always, villalog’s musical starting point is found somewhere between Kraftwerk and Can, Quicksilver Messenger Service and Spacement3. Doesn’t work? Sure it does! Founded in 1999 as a duo, Michi Duscher (guitar) and Marc Muncke (electronics) were subsequently joined by drummer Bernhard Fleischmann, who also produced this latest album.
Live performances by villalog often overflow into controlled drifting. Virtually all tracks have the potential to sink into an endless vortex of sounds that weave into and tumble over one another. This improvisational stream that glides out to the outer limits is at the core of “Space Trash”. The album’s roving sound was initially sparked during a brilliant concert at the 2010 Klangbad festival in Scheer, which in 2013 led to an invitation from festival and label boss Hans Joachim Irmer to record in his own Faust studio. Irmler also became co-producer of the album, reasonable collaboration as it is sometimes puts the focus on letting space and time oscillate.
The album opens with “Dusseldorf Dub”, a labyrinth of shimmering guitar feedback, swirling synth lines and almost stoic motorik drums. “Orange Sunshine” could have come from a beat-band on an electronic acid trip. “Alphaville” and the title track both contextualise the album’s forward-looking sound, a kind of “mirroir dans le future”, as one of Godard’s films is titled - dystopia meets ironic twist, the future is now. Here the cinephile soundscape quality is set, alluding to previously created commissions for video clips and sound design for movies. Later in the album, “Bassknopf” crashes out from this framework; fans of the Ed Banger or DFA labels will definitely take note. Or maybe some psychedelic ecstasy is in order? “NVN” is a contender for sure, a high energy track which creates a noisy organic sound mantra that drives directly into your legs and pineal gland in the typical villalog style.
Found at the end of the album, “Wall of Echoes” finally comes with a practiced reverberation, the band immerses us in echoes, throwing us into a future under construction and a morning that is bright against all odds.
Villalog’s second album “Two” (2007) saw a collaboration with Japanese MC Miss Hawaii, while the first self-titled album (2003) consisted of more stringent experimentation with electronica and guitar. The techno single, “Detroit”, off the band’s first EP, ran in heavy rotation on alternative radio stations. It becomes apparent from the band’s discography that villalog avoid categorization by genre. And yet, once you’ve heard them, they are clearly recognizable as villalog.
This year the trio has performed at two of Austria’s most important music festivals – Popfest and Waves. Coming soon to a club near you. (Heinrich Deisl, »skug«)
Release Date: 14.11.2014
1. Düsseldorf Dub
2. Plätscher Plätscher
3. Orange Sunshine
6. Space Trash
8. Wall of Echoes