Various Artists – Less-Lethal, vol.1

Various Artists

CD – Alku
This interesting projects of the Alku label has the layout and standard graphics of U.S. Army internal memos. It collects the contributions of many sound artists and its goal, starting from the included essay of the German scholar Paul Paulun, is to investigate the field (both practically and technologically) of non-lethal weapons, especially its relation with sound and music in military contexts. A sarcastic approach, maybe, but not even that much. Maybe more paradoxical, if we consider that the perverse imagination of military hierarchies has conceived the use of pop music as a psychological torture and conditioning device. These many suggestions are reflected in the artists’ approaches, in their more rigorous and conceptual experiments, centered on composition structures (with modulated variations of amplitude, length and looping) or on the exploration of the frequency ranges of weapons. Let’s not forget the psycho-acoustic aspects and, sometimes, the quotations or the amusing entr’actes (Torturing Nurse) either. It’s a fascinating sound catalog that puts together artists like Francisco López, Carlos Giffoni and Zbigniew Karkowski.