Various Artists, "The Black Book" (iDEAL)
"Joachim Nordwall marks 20 years of his iDEAL label with The Black Book, a blinding sweep of original material from JASSS, Stephen O'Malley, Ramleh, Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe, Carlos Giffoni & Prurient, Ectoplasm Girls, JH1.FS3, JS Aurelius, Autumns, John Duncan, and many more.
The story of iDEAL starts out in London 1998, when Nordwall was living the hardscrabble life: working in an underwear shop near Liverpool Street station; living in a filthy Bayswater apartment; scoring industrial records from the Music and Video Exchange; getting drunk in cheap pubs, and dreaming of starting a new record label and platform. He called it iDEAL, and 180 releases, 20 years later, it has become an invaluable node for non-standard, wayward expressions of modern electronic noise in all its mutable variation.
iDEAL's success and longevity may well be down to the way that Nordwall treated it as a social and artistic home, offering a place where mutually exclusive styles could bed down away from the mainstream or the genre police, and feed into a much larger, work-in-progress definition of fringe music. The Black Book extends, in the spirit of the label, an idealized compilation of disparate possibilities connected by a sense of musical mystery and chaotic energy.
To focus on just a few highlights, the ever unpredictable JASSS makes a notable inclusion with the serene vignette of LP opener, "Parental Youth," while Jim O'Rourke unfurls 17 minutes of gloaming post-industrial drone with "In Regards." Label friend Jonathan Uliel Saldanha contributes the tense, searching horns of "Siren Frontier," and Ectoplasm Girls cook up the grim, thrumming electronics of "Neuropean." John Duncan parses the airwaves to find the curdling organism of "Shortwave6," and Frederikke Hoffmeier (Puce Mary) and Jesse Sanes seduce with the narcotic drone-pop of "At The Bottom Of The Night" as JH1.FS3, alongside a powerful rhythmic oddity from Stephen O'Malley, a stark death rattle from Trepaneringsritualen as Týr × Reið × Vend with "nd þau né átto, óð þau né hfðo," and Norn Iron's Autumns "Lose It" on a mucky acid 'floor swill."
-via Forced Exposure