15 February 2012

Marhaug Forlag: Sudden Infant- Noise In My Head & Personal Best #1

2011-12 has been an exciting year for re-issues; Vinyl On Demand's gorgeous box sets of the late 1970s to mid 1980s Industrial/Noise/Synth/Wave scenes and key bands, Finnish maverick composer Pekka Airaksinen's One Point Music, Albert Ayler's Stockholm/Berlin 1966 CD, etc. But arguably more exciting to me in recent months is the slight resurgence of REAL print media in the music underground: As Loud As Possible's first issue, Sound Projector's all-vinyl only issue and Lasse Marhaug's 2 inaugural publications, Sudden Infant: Noise In My Head and the Personal Best #1 zine.

The Sudden Infant book was published mid last year and it is an excellent monograph-like spread of essays by friends and admirers (actually they are both in one most of time) of Joke Lanz, an amazing reservoir of photos from his various actions, gigs and whatnots throughout his long path down the aktionist/noise/transgressive tunnel. the fact that the artist himself and editor-in-chief, Lasse Marhaug decided to foreground more visuals over text is an exceptional choice, as Sudden Infant's art is not merely just sounds OR easily expressed via words but one, ideally has to be there, to feel the full impact of the man's creative vision to shock, to perplex and to hopefully trigger something amidst one's grey area, and not forgetting to entertain as well.   A hardbound book of exquisite layout and design to behold literally, it is a labour of love from both men involved in its production. A must for all vaguely interested in  REAL art from the heart and the underground.

Marhaug's second publication is a fanzine compiling 13 interviews he and his friends have conducted and you will be pleasantly pleased by the topics in discussion here. Going beyond music and noise (as the cover proudly states "Noise, Music and Beyond"), the subject of the interview talk about films, comics, extreme sports and AC/DC(!!!) plus more in a candid but committed way, irreverent at times but funny and non-po-faced. I personally love the Bruce Russell, Very Friendly (an excellent comic series based on the creator's impression/life as a sound/noise artist), C. Spencer Yeh ones. The overall design is of course tops. I see myself living in and out of the two publications for a long time to come. Get it before they are gone, as far as I know, the zine is down to around 20 copies right now from the publisher himself, find out more at Marhaug Forlag. You may want to try getting them from Tedium House, Volcanic Tongue or Metamkine. Better still, get BOTH.

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