Law & Disorder

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Law & Disorder is to be filed alongside Mike Patton's collaborations with turntablists and the PantyChrist project with Justin Bond, Bob Ostertag, and Otomo Yoshihide. It has the same "no holds barred" attitude and a similar instrumentation. Bruno Amstad is an experimental vocalist who often sounds like an industrial version of Jaap Blonk or Phil Minton. He manipulates his bass voice with electronics, achieving all kinds of deceiving tricks that will have you doubt what your ears tell you. The presence of turntablist Joke Lanz (of Sudden Infant fame) adds to the confusion; his fondness for sped-up and slowed-down voices results in hide-and-seek games with Amstad. Squeezed in the middle and left to provide some kind of bottom-end anchor, Christian Weber's double bass goes mostly unnoticed, except in "Ultrasonic Targeting" and "Presbyterian Barbecue" where it becomes the prime mover of the music. From stolen dialogues to industrial soliloquies, Law & Disorder is a disorderly beast -- in an entertaining way, especially if you are already familiar with the experimental end of turntablism -- constantly on the verge of tumbling into unruly noise. There is always a lot happening, but the pieces remain coherent, with a focus on dark textures and nightmarish outbursts. The highlight of the set is "Presbyterian Barbecue," in which Amstad loops a pattern of fake African drumming before starting to roar and finding a match in the shrieks of a coloratura soprano thrown into the mix by Lanz. But there is hardly a dull moment in this mostly continuous live performance.