Venetian Snares - Rossz Csillag Alatt Született
Planet Mu
Drill'n'Bass/Chamber Music
11 songs (46:42)
Release year: 2005
Venetian Snares, Planet Mu
Reviewed by Misha
Album of the year

Aaron Funk’s breakcore and drill’n’bass are renown for their relentless bursts of terror- and speedcore bordering breakbeat configurations such as were just recently collectively audible on Funk’s sonic onslaught on his hometown, namely Winnipeg Is A Frozen Shithole. He certainly does not chain himself to this style though, which many of his albums have already proved. This album is another example of that, not actually similar to his previous IDM outlets, while certainly taking a sharp turn from his short, preceding row of hard-hitting hammer-fests. Here, he lets the emotion flow freely again, into streams ending not in sea, but a masterpiece: Rossz Csillag Alatt Született, born under a bad star.

Between violins and vicious drum programming, there is a razor-thin line, for these are hardly mixable at all. While it’s not the first time an artist of this calibre tries to balance the blade for a while, Aaron doesn’t leap off after a few seconds, to land in either professions. He goes a lot further; for the bigger half of the album he dances the cutting edge with the agility of creativity, and runs along the entire line. The result of a trip to Hungary, he claims, along with his motivation to learn to play the violin and trumpet. It’s rarely apparent whether Funk spoofs or pays tribute to his influences, but in this case it’s clearly the latter. “These are love songs and grief songs”, Aaron said. They are, in a morbid way. The album is loaded with dark, intimidating, gloomy and even oppressive chamber play, sometimes melancholy so strong as he never used before, but just when you think that’s it, the familiar scatter-plots of drill’n’bass breakbeats find their way into breathing. Not to completely overrun the moody strings, like Aphex Twin’s work sometimes showcases, but to work together with these, adding even more atmosphere, emotional power and particularly its unseen morbidity.

Funk varies intelligently between songs that are more focussed on rich classical chamber play – I certainly hear Béla Bartók in there – and songs that are less experimental in the string department, with a focal shift towards the breakbeat spectrum. There is nothing formulaic about these tracks however, which is one of the album’s strengths. The mad Canadian even mixed in samples of Billie Holiday’s cover of Gloomy Sunday, the Hungarian suicide song that had so many on its account that it was banned in both Hungary and the US. Her sorrow-fuelled voice certainly strengthens the morbid yet often sorrowful atmosphere of the album, just like the girl talking about her relation to a pigeon as a metaphor for the problem of what we long for, or how she can’t remember what it is to be happy.

When firing albums into the world like a machine gun, chances are larger to miss the mark a few times. Aaron Funk seems to have lesser trouble with this than most, doing something new on almost all of his album he keeps his creativity in form. He points his gun at different targets continuously, and this shot, this album, hit me where it hurts the most, a bullet straight to the heart.

Killing Songs :
Misha quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Venetian Snares that we have reviewed:
Venetian Snares - Filth reviewed by James and quoted 66 / 100
Venetian Snares - Detrimentalist reviewed by Goat and quoted 82 / 100
Venetian Snares - Cavalcade Of Glee And Dadaist Happy Hardcore Pom Poms reviewed by Misha and quoted 80 / 100
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