Peter J. Woods
Impure Gold Pt. 2 [LP; Experimental Milwaukee]

I have to say right off the bat that the approach taken by Peter Woods on his second entry in the Impure Gold series almost NEVER works. Detached narration is a tough pill to swallow, even when all systems are GO-GO-GO otherwise, so for Woods to crack the code is noteworthy in and of itself. But there’s more to Impure Gold Pt. II than this achievement, as he’s created an ode to the noise gods, creepy yet defiant in the face of convention. (Incidentally, I’m listening to this in my record room late at night as I write this and I swear to you that my French doors just rattled creepily for no reason. And there couldn’t be a worse album for an unnerving occasion such as this. It reminds me of the time my wife passed out at a Xiu Xiu show, or when my daughter said “Who’s that?” pointing to an empty room while a spine-tingling Current 93 album spun on my player; music can be terrifying.) Woods is prone to sudden BLASTS from the furnace to shake up the quiet a la John Wiese, and he also can make the mountains rumble with throbbing avalanches of sound, both necessary traits for experimental musicians. And yet the moments I prize take place in that isolated cabin up North, wherein this Milwaukee prodigal son speaks his truth while high hats flail and random noises threaten the peace. I’ve heard records that sound technically better this year, but not any that hypnotize the ear like the first half of “Skin and Movement,” not to mention the haunting piano straight out of Eyes Wide Shut that bolsters the anything-but “Comedy.” All-original, cult classic, art edition available; what else do you need to know?


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