Circle - "Guillotine"
(Ektro Records 2003, 024)
Uploaded to Aural Innovations: February 2004
Well, they are back again! This CD was recorded during a week or so in July of 2003. I think this CD will catch people by surprise. The opening song, "Metsän Henget", is an amazing number. It begins like a normal Circle song and a very hypnotic groove that is sort of like the stuff on the singer, Mika Rätto's solo record from last year, Kopernikus Hortoilee Näkinkengässä, but then nothing is as it might seem as the vocals build and get more intense and the song ends quite powerfully. This track blew me away. I thought we were in for a great new Circle CD. Now, I don't know if someone trapped them in a room and made them hear all 40 Acid Mothers Temple records in one sitting or gave them a little LSD, perhaps, but man do they just freak out on this CD. "Harva maa" is a bizarre tune with an out of tune acoustic guitar and strange sounds and percussion. A strange instrumental freakout with samples (sounds like Beefheart mumbling in the background). "Pääton Mies" is another very strange track with weird vocals, crazed synths with the rate turned way up and bizarre. "Ojaa Pitkin" goes back to the acoustic guitar and strange minimal stuff. At least a tune is what is being played on the guitar. Weird stuff. "Teräskylpv" is a 12 minute track and starts with a cool bass line and the weird trip begins all over again as they layer in strange samples, distorted drum sounds, and finally it gets even stranger. Quite a distorted sound on this track. After a couple more tracks, we are back with stranger acoustic guitar strangeness for "Salar Opi". The next track reminds me of the stuff on the Doctor Rettu CD (reviewed in this issue of Aural Innovations), being very bizarre, dark disturbing soundscapes for like horror films. Don't play for small children! The fifteen minute "Alta rautatamimien", is again Circle at their brilliant best. I love the electric piano on the track. The CD closes with another strange track that could accompany a B horror film. I am not sure what to think about this CD. Make your own mind up but check it out!
For more information you can visit the Circle web site at: http://www.ektrorecords.com.
Reviewed by Scott Heller