Monday, 21 May 2012

Carter Tutti Void: 'Transverse'

First published as Dummy's album of the week

Carter Tutti Void

The notion of the legendary gig, that unmissable moment you inevitably missed, seems to belong to a previous era. The Sex Pistols at Manchester's Free Trade Hall, Public Enemy at Hammersmith Odeon in '87, Throbbing Gristle's 'Prostitution Show' at the ICA – take the venue's capacity and double it, and that's the number of people who'll swear, “I was there.”

Talking of Throbbing Gristle – those perverse pioneers of avant-garde noise and what became known as 'industrial' – the latest release from the group's alumni is a recording made at the Mute label's Short Circuit festival at the Roundhouse last May. Performing in the venue's tiny secondary space rather than the main hall, only a few hundred of the festival's ticketholders bore witness to Carter Tutti Void on stage, but now Mute is releasing the performance – four tracks over 40 minutes, plus an extra studio version of the final track – for general consumption.

Comprising Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti of TG and Nik Void of industrial resurrectionists Factory Floor, 'Transverse' is a guttural rasp from the ravaged carcass of machine music, a white-hot flash of metal-on-metal that leaves blistered skin and ears in its wake. You probably weren't there, but with this bleak and visceral artefact of performance (beautifully mastered, by the way) you can at least make an passable pretence of having being exposed to it in the flesh.

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