[reviews] afe076lcd
non ethos: syk asfalt

stylus magazine []
webzine, usa, november 2007

Italian dark ambient/experimental label Afe has been prolific recently, with a series of releases in stunning A5 sleeves and limited pressings. Non Ethos' (a.k.a. Hærleif Langås, now active as Northaunt) "Syk Asfalt" is one such offering, straddling vaguely foreboding atmospherics and more pure sound design and field recordings.

The whole exercise is rather minimalist. Natural/mechanical processes matter-of-factly fill the first 15 minutes. The effect is like standing in the doorway of a cottage with a thunderstorm outside and someone vacuuming inside. Not until midway through "Sleeping Streets" does low end enter to signal menace, human intervention. Otherwise, machines buzz quietly; water burbles steadily.

"Snow" is the most dynamic composition, overlaying low drones with found voices, glassy textures, and windswept, mutated organs. Neither calming nor agitating, such patient abstraction leaves interpretation up to the listener.

[Cosmo Lee]