With latest long player Contact, Pharmakon is presenting noise as communion
Empathy isn’t something you’d expect from a noise release. This is a field in which an artist’s studied disengagement plays an integral role in the sonics they produce. All those CD-R inserts and J-cards, black text on a black background, some badly photocopied images and a track list if you’re lucky, shore up the idea that the brain-shrivelling sound-barfs therein are unholy blasts channelled from the depths of some parallel dimension, instead of the result of some droog mashing up pedals. As a stance, it’s an admirable attempt to undermine the cult of rock music celebrity, but as time wears on these scowling missives increasingly resemble the sulks of the world’s grumpiest teenagers.