The Dead Are Those Who Have Died Live Recordings From Summer '08

Ryan Clark’s rarefied brand of brutalist noise is the product of a superlative command of a primitive and unconventional setup. Wielding a Flying V-looking guitar, various guitar preparations, two distortion pedals and a Traynor amp jacked up to infinity, Clark produces a striking range of sounds. And the polyphonic weaving of these sounds is a distinguishing trait of his work. While many are content to just make a harrowing racket, Clark’s work is far more dynamic and layered, encompassing a variety of levels of intensity and gestural contours. Soft, bell-like timbres are interrupted by torrents of radio static that give way to abstracted Sonny Sharrock-styled screes and then queasy feedback swells. The sum is more like a furious version of Tod Dockstader’s early tape works than what one would expect from one dude with a guitar facing his amp without the aid of any fancy pedals. (Bad Wolf)