Kristoffer Oustad – Filth Haven (2015) – Norway’s Kristoffer Oustad is one half of the industrial duo K.N.O. and this of course, is his first solo project outside of the band. It begins with thunderous drones and a speech detailing the infamous Georgia Guidestones. Those who are familiar with these stones should also be familiar with the underlying message of this piece.
“Traveller 10:00” comes in next, feeling the very image of robotic transcendentalism. Yet oddly enough, “Anticlockwise Rotation 6:30” sounds like the spiraling of time itself. I can even hear the chirping of birds from other divergences, which seems to state that birds themselves might not be relegated to air travel alone. If I happened to walk out of the Tardis while it was in motion, this is probably what I would hear.
“Row Me Over 9:00” seems to throw us right out into the country side, which is probably why I was hearing those birds closer to the end of the previous track. It looks like we’ve reached our destination and it’s right in the middle of a small marsh. After walking through the marshlands, it almost feels as if the destination was incomplete, and only a small chunk of land remains trapped in an abyss of some sort. Does the man realize the bars of his cage? Or does he simply refuse to care?
“Liquidator 5:45” seems to place us in a chamber, maybe the kind of chamber that one would stay in as if to remove toxins. I can hear the reverberations of the chamber coming in every once in a while to scrape away impurities, almost like some sort of a human carwash. “The Sun Maker 4:55” sounds like a spatial set of lights, each one exploding outward in an array akin to that of a fireworks display. It almost seems like a celebration in space, which only grows in grandeur as it continues. It makes me think of something truly monolithic.
Lastly, we have “The Arch 5:59” which brings back the machinations one last time. It feels rusty, as if huge, thick gears are grinding against each other. It seems to trail off in the distance, like a colossal machine that continues to march forward into oblivion. It’s quite a metaphor for our current system, I think. Filth Haven certainly isn’t the grimiest record I’ve ever heard, but it definitely brings out an array of different emotions which all serve a unique purpose. It certainly sounds like the kind of piece that we would expect from a solo artist, and I’m sure that future efforts from the man will be even stronger. After all, this is merely just the first step in a journey that he chose this time, to walk alone.
(7 Tracks, 49:00)