Pacific 231

Power Assume

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Recorded in 1985 and 1988, the four lengthy tracks on Power Assume are live improvisations on a variety of electronic and electric instruments. Triangulated somewhere between the formless improv of Chris Cutler's Recommended Records scene, the avant-garde drones of Neu! and the sonic terrorism of Throbbing Gristle or Cabaret Voltaire, these untitled electronic shrieks and howls are occasionally involving, but for most of the CD's hour-plus length, it sounds like Pacific 231 is shooting for the grinding hum of a far-off rail yard mixed with occasional sonic booms and jet-engine whines. The 2002 CD reissue marries the two original tracks from the original 1986 vinyl release, recorded in Montreal and Bordeaux, with a 1985 recording from New York and a most effective, often downright creepy 25-minute improvisation from Paris.