13 May 2007
The Sage Gateshead, Gateshead

Aufgehoben have patented a preposterously heavy, eye of the storm musical tug of war, in which 2 drummers, electronics and electric guitar fall over each other in a droning crush; a mass projection of layered sound, processed live and cranked way the hell in the red.

For years they didn’t perform live at all, preferring to create via untethered improvisation and then studio manipulation, with hours laboriously spent pouring over the recordings, layering and reassembling them into furiously crushing laminal ur-rock, interspersed with passages of more brooding black space, which hover with menace on the periphery of furiously crushing laminal… you get the picture.

Listening back to them now as I write this, their last album (Messidor) has an end result similar to what I imagine it might sound like if you threw This Heat and Throbbing Gristle, along with a couple of the acts appearing on any day of the No-Fun festival this year (lets say Tom Recchion, Aaron Dilloway and Mouthus), and maybe, strangely John Wall, down a particularly resonant stairwell: impossibly dense, tumbling and bloody exhilarating on the way down, followed by a period of crumpled introspection, as everyone tries to straighten their spines out a little, crawl out from underneath Tom Recchion and that guy from Mouthus’s drum kit.

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