13 August 2004

Nurse With Wound



I've mentioned Nurse With Wound so many times now I thought it was about time I got round to posting about him (them) especially because it's quite an intimidating band to get into, with a myriad of releases, versions and none of them able to definitively encaspulate the boy Stapleton's genius.

One of my favourite hobbies used to be watching confused black-clad industrial bovver boys trying to reconcile the covers with the music; you knew they were expecting a black-hole of noise and when a mash-up of (qu)easy listening came on in the shop, or 4 sides of meditative ambience and gongs they'd stare transfixed, confused and embarrassed, trying to work out whether this was 'hard' enough for them or whether their friends would be able to do that Front 242 stomp/dance while bitching about Throbbing Gristle going 'fookin' disco' and selling out (incidentall weren't Throbbing Gristle always disco?).

It makes you glad that Nurse With Wound always stuck to their guns by not sticking to their guns.

I don't like everything they've ever done but you always get the feeling that there's real thought and demented passion behind everything they've released (maybe not everything but certainly more than the usual 'industrial' TG / Merzbow copyists who substituted genuine musical exploration with tired feedback volleys, My Cock's On Fire vocals and diarhorrea/incest/genital mutilation samples and then released their crap onto cassettes for sad spotty porno kids to Beavis and Butthead over.

It's no wonder Steven Stapleton hated the industrial tag. Later it gave us crap heavy metal with drum-machines, after all...

As a very brief and general guide, I'd recommend the following albums:

Soliloquy for Lilith is a wonderfully organic and spooky drone classic which sounds like giant centipedes crawling over underwater contact mics in a submerged cathedral (sort of)

Automating Volume One is like the soundtrack to a Sc-fi movie about cannibalistic aliens eating Surrealist painters; the beats are just about rhythmic if you've ingested half a gallon of high-grade Oswald acid and the spoken word vocals sound like a short story by Philip K Dick's slightly odd nephews Tamsin and Rupert (who think Uncle Phil's a bit of a square and ought to stay in more)

Second Pirate Session takes the very weird Rock N Roll Station by some French surrealist I can't remember right now (Jacques someone?) as a starting point for a barrage of vaguely dancey beats, skewed sampling and re-runs of some of TGs electro moments. If The Orb were any good, they'd sound like this.

Actually I quite like The Orb. It's just that hat...

Thunder Perfect Mind goes from a sidelong slice of Kraftwerkian silliness with randomised dogs barking (I'm sure there's a Rosie and Jim sample somewhere) to a sidelong slice of heavy rolling autistic beats, sweeping echoes and spoken word poetry weirdness.

150 Murderous passions (with Whitehouse) is all-out noise, shrill, nasty and very intense. It sounds like more than a 150 murderous passions.

Anyway, you can read all about Nurse With Wound in the excellentEngland's Hidden Reverse which documents the development and influence of Nurse, Coil and Current 93 as a kind of UK underground triad of weirdness. Expensive, but worth it for a beautiful package plus a decent enough intro CD (though if you like the bands you'll probably have all the tracks already)

So. The downloads. These may seem a weird selection to those that know Nurse With Wound but I can't host my own tracks and so I have to make do with a laborious trawl around the tracks already available on the web:

She and Me Fall Together Like Free Death is not particularly typical (if any track is) but it's free and available (like my mate Nye, if anyone's interested)



There's also a streaming video available here which is apparently (my machine can't take it without glitches ahoy) an intimate behind the scenes look at Steven Stapleton.



You can also go to a page here which gives you two tracks: Rockette Morton (based on a Captain Beefheart sample and on the A Sucked Orange album and You Walrus Hurt The One You Love from The Sylvie and Babs Hi-Fi Companion album (warning: this is a long track which makes up the whole of side two and mostly consists of mashed up easy listening sing-a-longs...very entertaining and very weird, especially in the days before bootlegging)

And Here you can grab Nurse With Woun's "A Precise History of Industrial Music' (also from A Sucked Orange)

Finally, there's a bizarre page of samples (optimised for looping apparently) of many bands, Nurse included here

And at Phaneronoemikon there's no music at all, just... well go and have a look; I'm sure Nurse With Wound would approve.

6 comments:

Jeff said...

"Actually I quite like The Orb. It's just that hat..."

yup, in the kingdom of the blind, the orb reign supreme...

Anonymous said...

You are, by far, the most consistently interesting MP3 Blog I frequent. I love 98.5% of the music you post. Keep it up. You are appreciated. I can hear my brain sizzling.

Psychbloke said...

Stop writing your own comments mate......

Loki said...

can you do that? I thought it was you psychbloke...Damn this comments box...thanks for the kind words anonymous (whoever you are)

Psychbloke said...

Sure you can....I've been busy inventing a variety of exotic visitors to boost my comments...
(Caroline read my blog yesterday - sole comment: "You don't get many comments do you ?")
Anyway, no help from you - I notice my link has been replaced by some post-modern ironic posturing about Rachael Stevens
- but I see the redundant guestbook stays.....

Anonymous said...

I (anonymous again) posted the comment/compliment. Why anonymous? Because I don't feel like becoming a fucking member of something in order to say thanks for something. Why comment? Because the M.O. for MP3 blogs lately seems to be a lot of bitching and whining that no one ever comments on the tracks posted. So I felt compelled and honestly, this is the only fucking blog worth a squat anyway.

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