Moha! - Raus Aus Stavanger
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Moha!
Raus Aus Stavanger

Moha! is a young Norwegian duo who play improvisational guitar/drums/electronic that veer from quiet and eerie to full-on breakneck and brutal. The two have put out a series of CDRs together, and have collaborated with slews of artists and have appeared in such groups as Jaga Jazzist (among others). Recorded in the same analogue studio that birthed Supersilent and the Scorch Trio, the two recorded everything with no overdubs, following in the line of the aforementioned labelmates and others on the scene.

Raus Aus Stavanger is one hell of a workout. Ten tracks run almost forty-five minutes and the youngsters waste no time coming out of the gates as "A2" starts with processed drums and screeches of guitar feedback before the two elements slowly meld together, like two broken-down scrap heap robots trying to dance elegantly but slamming together and damaging themselves in the process. "B1" drops all mentions of restraint as the drums are absolutely hammered to bits while the guitar belches out power chords and skronked-out noise. The track lurches and rumbles for over five minutes before the group breaks into "B3," which finds the drums mangled into processed, freaked-out loops and smashing single hits while the guitar wails behind the madness.

After another massive workout, the group busts into "C7," which seems to be their ode to stoner rock as sludgy guitar riffs drive the track as noise-blasted beats hammer away, sending off bits of radio noise and random sonics that make it sound like there are far more than two people playing. In fact, on most tracks it seems like there are at least three people doing things, even though the duo manages to make all the racket by their lonesome (with the help of some effects gadgets, no doubt). On the first half of the album, the manage to do a good job of letting up once in awhile and letting things breathe before slamming into another hellacious assault.

Even though it's no doubt an attempt at more variety, the album stumbles a bit during the second half in places as the duo takes a break from the pounding and lets loose with several tracks that sound like little more than squigged-out guitar fret noise shards and random snare fills often accented with electronics. The closing track of "B5" is an especially cumbersome piece as dissonant guitar stabs bleed over the top of rapidly freaking-out drums. It's pretty engrossing in places, but at nine minutes (and considering all that has come before it), it feels a bit like overkill. More out-there than Scorch Trio and definitely more noisy than just about anything else I've heard on Rune Grammofon, this one might be only for fans who try to pick up everything the label releases, or those who thrive on improv noise.

rating: 610
Aaron Coleman 2006-02-02 21:18:40