Nurse with Wound

Spiral Insana

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AllMusic Review by

Spiral Insana is one continuous piece of music, indexed over three tracks (on the compact disc), with 20 track titles listed on the cover. Such is Steve Stapleton's Nurse with Wound. And it's just as well, because the music inside, more ambient and user-friendly than on other NWW outings, is still just as surreal and avant-garde as the rest of the catalog. Here, Stapleton and guests Robert Haigh, David Jackman, and Chris Wallis mix bowed piano, percussion, a radio, loops, and what is credited on the sleeve as "stuff" together into an hour-long collage of mashed-up sounds, jarring juxtapositions, buzzsaw distortion, and even a pipe organ. If that sounds disorienting, that's because it is, both in description and execution. Nurse with Wound has always had a unique sound and vibe on their records, and Spiral Insana carries on in that tradition. While not as ambient and single-minded in tone as the drone masterpiece Soliloquy for Lilith or as jarring as the industrial Dada of Chance Meeting on a Dissecting Table of a Sewing Machine and an Umbrella, Spiral Insana is as good a place as any to start with the Nurse with Wound catalog. Like the proverbial box of chocolates, you're never quite sure what you're going to bite into.

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