NorNoise | Chicago Reader


In this 2004 video documentary Tom Hovinbole asks more than a dozen talking heads—most of them Norwegian—what noise music is. “You shouldn't theorize it to death,” says sound artist Maja Ratkje. And that's exactly what most of the interviewees do. Still, in struggling to offer a broad explanation as well as define their own working philosophies, there are some fascinating ideas floated by the likes of Spaniard Francisco Lopez, Japanese artists Masami Akita (aka Merzbow) and Otomo Yoshihide, and Norwegians Helge Sten (aka Deathprod), Lasse Marhaug, and Ratkje, among others. Short bursts of tedious performance footage puncture extended stretches of visually tedious, intellectually rich discussion. Unfortunately Hovinbole arranges the complete interviews in succession, rather than overlapping the discussion on resonant issues, but if you've got some patience the dialogue is occasionally illuminating. 117 min.

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