Dutch experimentalists RMFTM (fka Radar Men From The Moon) have already showcased their collaborative mastery when they teamed up with Gnod on the Temple ov BBV project back in 2017. Having now retired the former output, the Eindhoven four-piece are back with a brand new collaborative LP with fellow label-mates 10,000 Russos. Portuguese trio 10,000 Russos are best known for conjuring up concrete slabs of kosmische psych-rock and now, having teamed up with RMFTM, their repetitive droning mantras have manifested into a whole new beast – the looped, motorik chants feeding perfectly off RMFTM’s pulsing free-form jams. The album is due via Fuzz Club Records and will be released at the London label’s forthcoming European festival Fuzz Club Eindhoven, kicking off on August 24th.
Free from any sort of structure or direction, the result of this pairing is an intense, jarring collection of deranged industrial freak-outs that make Einstürzende Neubauten sound like Depeche Mode. Painting a dreary image of barren, polluted landscapes in the dystopia we seem so desperate to hurtle towards, on this record RMFTM and 10,000 Russos have laid out a terrifying, cerebral soundtrack for the end of times whilst simultaneously asserting that both bands are some of the finest within the dark, murky underbelly of experimental music. From the pulverising guitars, metronomic beats and industrial synths, to the droning Tibetan bowls and buried vocal chants, the album jerks between intense metallic fury and psychedelic hypnosis. Perhaps the best example of this is the album opener and lead single, ‘A Song To Get Rid Of The Crooked Crosses’, a fifteen-minute transmission that captures the power and expansiveness of the album perfectly; heavy, repetitive and droning, throughout its running time the crushing instrumentation on the track slowly works its way into a throbbing sonic assault.
Recorded at Super-Nova Studios with Bob De Wit (Gnod, A Place To Bury Strangers) – whom the bands credit as being the third, equally-important component of the collaboration – the album is just as much of a product of their improvisational approach as it is inspired by avant-garde literature. Whilst Russos vocalist João recites lyrics that are taken from a collection of short stories by Honore De Balzac, one of the forebears of the realism literary movement, RMFTM say the actual writing and production process itself was also indebted to the cut-up techniques of the Beat generation. Talking about the collaboration, Glenn Peeters (RMFTM) explains: “The plan was to create something meaningful in one day. The album started out as improvisations but we didn’t want it to be simply a collection of jams so after recording them we went back and stitched all the improvised parts together to shape it into something else entirely, using a similar cut-up approach to that of William S. Burroughs.”
The album came into existence when 10,000 Russos stopped off in Eindhoven whilst touring their latest album Distress Distress. Vocalist João Pimenta reveals: “We were in the middle of an insane 2-month European tour when we played Stroomhuis in Eindhoven. We’d already spoke with RMFTM about making a record together and the next day we had a day off so we just turned up at theirs and Bob’s studio with no idea what we were going to do and ended up making the album in a day.” This spontaneity sits at the very heart of the album; born out of live improvisations, it’s gone on to be twisted into something that packs a formidable punch both sonically and emotively. As they put it on the back of the record sleeve: “This is for the primitive impulses that govern us.” Both 10,000 Russos and RMFTM are in their own rights capable of transcending boundaries with each and every release they lay their hands on, continuously pushing experimental rock to its limits. For the uninitiated, this album will serve as the perfect introduction to the exploratory mastery of both bands, and to those already in the know, it’s a chance to experience both of them like they’ve never been before.
Pre-order the collaboration here. Listen to ‘A Song To Get Rid Of The Crooked Crosses’ here: