International Internal Catastrophes is the latest from the always intriguing Grecian sound artist Novi_sad (Thanasis Kaproulias). This is his first-ever self-released effort in his recording history of just over a decade, his earlier work residing on Sub Rosa and Sedimental among others. This is one long 32 minute track that starts completely abruptly over a minute in, and then grows and corrodes simultaneously. The backing drone is fierce and constant, the action is industrially thick, like a giant spinning machine tumbling gravel, whirring away until he adds a higher set of tones over the already mesmerizing layers.
The startling Bauhausian-styled cover art and poster insert was illustrated by Stanley Donwood who has worked with Radiohead. The systems fade out about halfway through to a sublime quiet. That single tone sprouts smaller minors that sort of braid themselves to and from the central core of the track as Kaproulias adds a rocket burning percussion, little by little. One would imagine this would be a great work to experience live, in the round, and feels like an evolution in style after having only seen him in this context eight years ago. The sound is in a gray-area that I appreciate – denser, and better presents the formation of a slow-build crescendo that at its peak genuinely pulsates and radiates with a heady brilliance. In its final minutes the piece looms large and like a ball of superimposed tv snow patterns that abruptly end the way it began. This disc is available in a limited edition of 500. Some related audio/visual content was developed in Iceland with Isaac Niemand. You can check out some imagery here and below: