Review: LDQ Ysimaro / Mente-Atada – Disembodied (Antenna Non Grata, Jan 22)

For the most part, I tend to stay away from artists who are extremely prolific. It’s not that I believe it’s impossible that high levels of quality and quantity can coexist—I’m just never convinced. Calling Argentinian project Mente-Atada “prolific” is a bit of undersell; they’ve released nearly 100 albums, EPs, and splits since member Mosca took up the mantle solo in October 2020. Like I said, digging into that much isn’t really my thing, but when a more reticent label like Poland’s Antenna Non Grata highlights some material (in this case in the form of Disembodied) it’s a good way to check in. I don’t know much about LDQ Ysimaro, not even where they’re from, but just based on the music itself, this split pairing of a very infrequent and a very frequent releaser is a great one. Both artists deliver ersatz monoliths of grinding, churning, gnashing harsh noise and other unruly live electronic bedlam that make use of both stasis and dynamism in roughly equal measure. On LDQ’s side, heavy apocalypse-synths crack under the weight of unrelenting distortion drill bits, which shatter the more palatable textures into shards that flit around the ensuing tornado of debris for the remainder of the track. Mente-Atada’s is more traditionally harsh, but it keeps things interesting by assimilating a whole host of techniques and styles—cut-up, stop/start, power electronics, wall—into a single, brutish assault. ANG states their cassettes are “made with love”; I’m not sure I would wager the same about the music. And in this case, that’s a good thing.