Larsen | Rever | Review

Waterfront Week | Volume 12.5 | Mark Keresman

some of the breezes of the Mediterranean

As I've often stated or implied in these pages, Brooklyn is where paths that crisscross the globe intersect. Take this ensemble from Torino, Italy, Larsen ­ this release (their first?) comes to us via Brooklyn's Young God Records, the label started by M. Gira of Swans/Angels of Light/Body Lovers fame. Larsen ­ who are named on the CD but not identified by photographs ­ mailed Gira some CD-Rs of their music, and then asked him to come to Italy to act as producer for Rever. The tracks that comprise this disc aren't exactly "songs" in the usual sense ­ they're drones and chants, a punk-rock take on the minimalism of Steve Reich and Phillip Glass. Larsen's music most resembles Sonic Youth (in their clang-drone mode), Amon Duul I (hippie tribal juju) and Mogwai (contrasts of silence & roar), but what puts them a cut above the pack of noisemongers is their use of Italian folk elements, acoustic instrumentation and a tantalizing sense of reserve. Though it's unlikely these sounds will be used in any ads promoting tourism in Italy, their music has some of the breezes of the Mediterranean wafting through it. Larsen¹s eerie quietcore = Nino Rota gone goth, or the Italian counterpart to the Swans? You be the judge.