Summer has come, soon the air will be filled with mucus filing pollen, and I’m cooked up in an office with lots of free time. What better way to pass the time than to do some delightful Discogs archaeology!
I started off with looking at the discography of some good old fashioned industrial tape labels, since it’s been a while I enjoyed some harsh rhythmic melodies. I got caught up with the Insane Music label and their myriad of compilation tapes. Some really fantastic stuff there, and I noticed Kopfschmerztablette, a classic and favorite industrial bands of mine. But hey, what is this release, Objekt Zwei Oder Einfahrt Freihalten? Haven’t seen that one before, and the label, ZNS Tapes? A short-lived, German, tape label from the late 80’s – early 90’s, with a focus on abstract, experimental, industrial, music. And their entire back catalog is available online? Now were talking!
ZNS Tapes was started in 1987 by Andreas Scholz and Andreaz Vogel, both active in the music business, Scholz in the technical side and Vogel with many contacts in the experimental tape underground scene. Their first release on the label was the musically varied compilation tape Cortisol; with bands like Suicide Commando, Enema & Gejonte, Liquid G, and Solanaceae Tau.
With a non-profit, or at least a very low profit, philosophy, ZNS Tapes continued to release tapes by lesser known artists so people could afford more tapes to find new interesting bands. However, in 1988 Andreas Scholz decided to leave the label to peruse other things, but Andreaz Vogel continued the work and released over 30 more tapes(and one LP) the next 5 years. In 1993 Vogel decided to close the work with ZNS due to lack of time, but he continued with another label project a year later, called Gewalt-Am-Objekt; though at a lower pace.
In 2002 Vogel decided to re-release all the past material for free on a website dedicated to the label, to provide a way for people to enjoy the music they helped come true, and to preseve the history of the label.
I found out about the label by the release by Kopfschmerztablette, but for some reason I decided to listen to the release by Tam Quam Tabula Rasa, an Italian experimental, industrial project by Luca Ferrarini, Marco Berisso, Paolo Gentiluomo, Roberto Soprani. A very interesting project who were active from 1988 to 2004, with a big discography with I am going to dig through with delight after listening to Noxia Blandimenta.
The cassette was released on ZNS in 1990 and is a very neat musical gem! Tracks heavy on industry and reminiscent of Vivenza, to more ambient tracks with an almost tribal flare and incessant tape loops, and finishing on Ars Necandi, a masterful track of avant-garde industry! A must for any experimental electronic music buff! A shame about the couple of glitches in the recordings on the website, but nothing that makes it unlistenable…
I’m off to dig deeper into the tape loops, and might resurface with a review or two, if the airborne chemical warfare don’t get to me first.