Recorded in 1985-86, these posthumous tapes transport me back to a time when :zoviet*france: (for the occasion, Robin Storey, Ben Ponton and Paolo Di Paolo) was among the first outfits to teach this listener a thing or two about exploring the inner self. Spaghetti Western is a welcome addition to the :zoviet*france: discography, which includes at least three or four milestones of the “deserted-urban-area-shamanic-trance” genre (Shadow Thief Of The Sun and Shouting At The Ground are not to be missed) and, in its muddy unpretentiousness, transports our attention to that interstice between comfort and absurd fear, the music gaining significance as timbral pimples grow inexorably into enormous disfigurements of simple improvisation. The opening movement is a collage of looped and processed TV dialogues (think of a hybrid remix of “America Is Waiting” from My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts minus the 4/4 rhythm), after which the likely lads from Newcastle take off with a compelling series of ritual ceremonies full of percussive round trips, distant wooden flutes and memories of randomly plucked cheap string instruments drifting into a destabilizing sensual haze. Economy of means notwithstanding, these messages truly unscramble the nerves. :zoviet*france: always avoided technical expertise to reach the heart of the matter.

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