[reviewed by / autor recenzji: A1D5B6 || ENG]
“Your Suffering Will Be Legendary” is the last statement of Lee M. Bartow, also known as Leech, under the moniker of Navicon Torture Technologies. Having successfully gashed and slashed our minds and hearts with his sounds for 12 years, Leech decided to put the project to rest in 2009 and released a double CD called “The Gospels Of The Gash”, which included a bonus CDr with remixes and collaborative tracks between NTT and other artists. This CDr is now reissued by Malignant Records and is presented to anyone who seeks one more chance to dive into the painful and torturous world of Navicon Torture Technologies.
The sounds on this release are as diverse as the projects that collaborate with NTT. By taking a closer look to the roster we find artists such as Troum, Kristoffer Nyströms Orkester, Herbst9, Aun and many others, who stain with additional pain the already bloody canvas that Leech has painted. The presence of Deutsch Nepal can be perceived very well in “Victvm Vermis” with its repetitive rhythms and haunting voices, while Jarboe and NTT deliver an excellent ambient track overlayed with an organ generated drone, that reminded me of some of NON’s ambient works. Track duration can range from 4 minutes to 20, and not a single track exists in the recording, that fails to deliver the title’s promise. Tracks like “An exercise in pain”(NTT and Autoclav1.1) and the remarkable 20-minute long “Eclipsed By A Blue Star” (NTT and Herbst9) haunt us with their mixture of dark and noise ambient soundscapes and rich sonic textures. But make no mistake, this dark ambient facet of the album is far from soothing. Beneath the ambience lies a foul seed, aiming to corrupt the soul of the listener with its invisible presence. As the tracks unfold, the eerie feeling of underground pressure is combined with an almost religious atmosphere of reverence.
Lee’s religion however is not one of redemption, but one of unanswered prayers that delivers us directly into the arms of torment and violence; this is made crystal clear by tracks like “Soul Eater” (NTT and Black Sun) and “Headwound” (NTT and Inswarm), that expose us to nothing but sheer brutality. Here distorted vocals blend with reverberating sounds and sometimes stretched or dissonant percussion. On the other hand we find tracks that utilize a more rhythmic approach, in the vein of IDM – “Gumrot” (NTT and Fragment King) – and power noise industrial – “She Throws Me To The Dogs” (NTT and Prometheus Burning). Although this is the part of the album with which I am musically least familiar, it nevertheless seems to play a very specific part in the whole concept of the release. One can say that it is something like a small interval, where the victim is allowed to take a breath, not for their own comfort, but in order for the torturer to start afresh with his work. Here the oppressive mood vanishes (or is it wisely concealed?) so that it may return with the tracks that follow up to the end of the album – where the instincts and emotions which constitute our dreams and desires are dissected the one from the other, to reveal through sound the struggle between the carnal and the spiritual. To show the listener how their inevitable merging leads almost always to a hideous implosion.
The diversity of the sounds will surely not appeal to everyone, but there is always something to be found in each of the tracks, and those who may dare to approach this work collectively will discern something of the message that Lee M. Bartow conveys with NTT. For me personally there is no other track like the masterpiece “I Won’t Survive In A World Without You” (NTT and Covet) that externalizes and communicates in a more articulate manner the pain of the esoteric world of Leech. Its blending of melodies and noises creates the absolute soundtrack of desperation, of those kinds of moments that remain forever carved in the being of everyone who has experienced them, leaving them drowning in this loop of torture, their heads bent, their ears shut to everything but the memory certifying that there will never be a “happy tomorrow” for them, nothing but a void… and if this suffering is not legendary then what is?
Navicon Torture Technologies – Your Suffering Will Be Legendary
Malignant Records, TumorCD60