Artist: Espen Jensen, Kjetil D Brandsdal
Format: Vinyl 12″ repress
Label: Le Jazz None/Smalltown Supersound
Cat nr: STSLJN397LP
Selected by Jim O’Rourke for his Tone Glow list of 25 albums that “never got their due”, Org
was founded in the early 90’s by Espen Jensen and Kjetil D Brandsdal who would later go on to variously record as Elektrodiesel, Noxagt and Ultralyd in the swirl of the highly active Norwegian underground. “Org” was the only album the pair recorded as a duo, pressed in a meagre edition of just over 100 copies which disappeared almost as soon as they were made, lodged in the memory of the select few who have managed to hear it in the years since.
Made up of three long tracks, the near 20-minute ‘001’ opens the album with an extended organ zone-out matched with scraping factory machinery saturated into a dense cloud of harmonic fuzz. There’s something transcendental about the sound that intersects with microtonal Alice Coltrane (particularly the unfairly maligned organ-only edition of “Turiya Sings”), as well as Pauline Oliveros and Ramleh. It’s music that pulls you in subconsciously; before you know it, you’re fixating on the uncomfortable grind of metal on metal, buried mechanical rhythms and liturgical organ vamps that wind between industrial cacophony and sacred ritual music. For its last few seconds, we go into a full death metal tearout that fades out before it takes full flight, a glorious wtf.
‘002’ connects between minimalist drone styles and shoegaze, distorting fuzzed organ into pliable, dreamlike warbles that end up sounding like Kevin Shields’ ‘Loveless’-era glides, or even Sunn O))) at their most devotional. Never losing the numbing overdriven mettle, its a piece that sounds spiritually entwined with Matthew Bower’s Skullflower – a minimalist re-reading of high- contrast guitar music that takes all the psychoacoustic power and none of the annoying posturing.
For ‘003’, subaqueous organ is joined by synth and drum machine, sounding like the inspirational spark for Religious Knives’ screwed ‘n chopped cosmic psychedelia. The choice of sounds links it to Antena’s foundational electro samba recordings too, but the overwhelming drone – a constant on all three compositions – connects the music to minimalist spirituals that have simmered beneath the DIY/avant garde for decades.
‘Org’ sits heavy on the nerves with overproof levels of mulched amp worship and ungodly, palms- down organ chords and wheezing, bezonked lines of melodic thought. 25 years out of sight and marinading in the archives, with the benefit of hindsight we can better understand the role these sounds played in the development of music in the contemporary sphere. It’s an important piece of the puzzle, one that makes valuable connections that, over time, have looked progressively more faint.
Text from Boomkat