Filtered Through Friends

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Remix albums come and go, rarely assessing more than the original music did. Filtered Through Friends makes for an interesting listen and could even be approached as a sampler of the Norwegian experimental electronica scene, but it remains a collection of hits and near-misses. The subject of this project is Det Eneste Jeg Vet er at Det Ikke er en Støvsuger, the 1999 CD by Norway's female chamber anarchist quartet Spunk. The roster includes Phonophani, Jazzkammer's Lasse Marhaug, and Spunk's own Kristin Andersen. The results splatter all across the specter of sample-related avant-garde music, from experimental techno to sound collage and harsh noise. Only the most adventurous type will appreciate all propositions. Others will probably discard a few tracks along the way. Worth mentioning are Martin Horntveth's "Det Eneste Jeg Vet er at Det Var et Horn Engang," a beautiful study in granular synthesis; Upper Rooms' techno/lounge-pop "Thing That Hurts"; Marhaug's sonic attack "Septemberunderlaget 2"; and Svalastog's "Feil Remix," which brings back to life Ground Zero's album Consume Red in a surprising (but not completely convincing) way. Filtered Through Friends leaves little of Spunk to witness, but it shows how much Norway had caught up with the European avant-garde electronic movement by the end of 2001.

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