REVIEW: Negative Charge - "Structural Theories"

By Mike Ventarola

Chain Border

Structural TheoriesIn the constant evolution between sound, music and cacophony, Negative Charge married the paradigms of science, sound and experimentation to bring us this release. Granted, this isn't typical nightclub music per se, and is more in line with fans of hardcore industrial and noise than any of the other genres currently in rotation at the moment.

Despite this reviewers aversion to industrial and noise with very few exceptions, this release did clearly resonate with a creative aspect that is mechanized yet full of music theory on an expansive level. The recording worked much better with the freedom of the stereo blaring its tracks than actually having it on the headset. For some reason, the headset did little to bring out the considerable nuances and inflections of these mechanizations that were not lost when unleashed within the confines of an open room.

The artists explain it best themselves on their webpage:

"We are all forms of energy; eternal and connected. Deep within the structures of our universe is the negative charge, a force that keeps electrons in their perfect orbits, as they recreate time and space continuously on a subatomic level. Negative Charge, a creative power inspired by this force, grabs our minds leading us on a micro/macro cosmic exploration within the dimensions of sound..."

Tarris Fronzoli and Ryan Stinnett are the duo behind Negative Charge, having begun their journey towards electronica since 1995. This symbiotic relationship is clearly evident with the styles they have created, harmonizing sound, noise, blips and squeaks in a variety of manners that would astound many sound effects folks in the Hollywood realm.

Interface opens the disc with an amalgamation of sounds which seem to have been clearly lifted from every computer game thus far on the market with added touches and vacant vocals subtly caressing the edgier sounds. Mind Remix has a great nod towards the science fiction era of the macabre that quickly veers into a more club friendly percussive beat sampled over a multitude of white noise effects, odd pings, drill and razor like cut out beats. Flesh could be utilized in a science film depicting the animation of life from a cellular level. Odd female sounds are thrown in the mix but are kept clearly out of any decipherable range.

Fuckthismachine may have been aptly named after many a PC crash, as this is a sentiment most of us have screamed at our monitors at one time or another. There are frequency modulations, odd clicking percussion and an assortment of white noise tweaked, twisted and bent in ways that most people working for Con Edison probably would never have imagined. Blank delves again into a foray that is part horror, part mechanistic science fiction and very much akin to futurism. The duo avoids anything even remotely commercial by simply allowing their wild imaginations to pull from a variety of sources. Ironically, there is also a female voice that is backward masked and then played forward at modified speeds, pretty much emphasizing the very "thing" most men hear when the women in their lives start to nag them.

Anomoly took many points of white noise to bend them in as many ways as humanly possible with the use of a PC. XYZ assaults us like the drilling from a dentist, slowly vaporizing into a cricket like bleep that succumbs to crashes and thrashes over an almost friendly dance beat. Glitch adds touches of musical notes within the confines of the noise structures only to transfer their energy source to mechanized pulsations and exploding bleeps in an almost jungle beat.

Komatose twists musical notes, strains it through computer technology, and pretty much creates a hybrid of sounds that join the mundane sounds of any hospital and add flourishes of horror and annihilation. Body warns us to "watch the machine destroy itself" which is an odd forewarning parable replacing man as machine.

Like the CD's cover artwork of the tree with a multitude of branches, Negative Charge set out to demonstrate that alternate sounds can and will be created with the advancement of technology. This work is highly experimental and prone to become a staple among the collection of noise fans simply for the sheer brilliance that they were able to hybridize various noise and sound effects into an anthology of man, machine, metal, and surrealistic fluidity.

For the average music consumer, this work may be rather too avant garde. However, one can envision it being utilized in a classroom for the purpose of teaching music. Stinnett and Fronzoli clearly took musical theory to heart and set out to work within the structures of those foundations while still managing to surpass the current notions of what is deemed as music.

Contact Information:

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