I can’t find too much information about Bone Pillar. I know it’s a project from France, and I know as of right now this self-titled tape is about the only thing that has been released. This one comes from back in 2013; it’s a single-sided series of harsh noise walls, lasting about 25 minutes despite the much longer tape length. Three tracks make up the tape in total: “First Tower,” “Marble Gallery,” and “Of Bone and Pillar.”
The three tracks are bass-heavy rumbles. “First Tower” features a nice crunchy dynamic to it, a juddering static sound overtop of voluminous lower tones. It’s a nice short wall with minimal changes, but lots to focus on within.
“Marble Gallery” has a very similar setup – the same types of bass-driven tones – but this time it sounds as though this wall has been slowed down. We get a very reverb-laden element almost like the sound a helicopter’s rotors make chopping through wind. It’s quite hypnotic, but it doesn’t last long enough.
Lastly “Of Bone and Pillar” continues the bass onslaught, this time at a lurching rumble with a more continuous crackling effect that almost feels martial in its rhythms. This one tends to shift a bit as various elements come and go – sometimes leaving just the dark ambience of the bass tones.
Three solid harsh noise/ambient noise wall tracks for your enjoyment with a Castlevania slant.
Trou is a harsh noise project from Mieczko K., the same person who runs the label Ciel Bleu et Petits Oiseaux. On Sans/Ni, a short release for Memory Wave Trasnsmission veteran Autistic Campaign, he experiments with drone noise walls – a deviation on harsh noise walls that emphasizes the layered aspects of synth drones without the harshness of static and bass. It’s an interesting take on the subject matter, and drone noise wall (DNW) has seen a wide variety of artists exploring denser, less harsh sonic territories.
The cassette is split by side with two nine minute cuts. The first, “Sans”, finds Trou experimenting with a warbling synth tone while a deeper one provides the unshifting wall-like drone. The tendency for Trou to loop the synth tone and then cut it off unexpectedly in the midst of its repetition adds a hypnotic layer to the track that makes up for the fairly rigid structuring. Thinking in terms of HNW, Trou has given us that base tone that locks the listener in and the constant static shifts that draw the listener’s attention, and “Sans” is a compelling track that does require a few listens before the idea really clicks.
“Ni” is similar in its approach, again featuring a drone that undulates almost identically to “Sans.” This time, however, Trou incorporates a grittier tone, with static that wouldn’t seem out of place on a traditional HNW track. It adds nice texturing to the track, and Trou randomly cuts things off in the track with a pocket of silence to keep the listener engaged. Again, this concept carries through to the end of the track, although the drone seems to get muddier throughout. However, the warbling is a bit too similar to “Sans”.
Sans/Ni is an engaging experiment from Trou, and it shows that drone noise walls can be effective with the right approach. And Trou’s choice to keep things short – nine minutes per side, twenty overall – ensures the listener won’t tire of the sound, because I’m not sure how well DNW would work at longer intervals. This is an refreshing tape and I’m eager to hear more from Trou.