Tunnel Canary – Jihad CDR

Tunnel Canary-Jihad

Right so, it’s 1980! & some goons from Vancouver are about to vault a decade or so ahead in some kind of precocious portendral catapulting. Tunnel Canary! Who were active between 1978-1983 & transfigured tremendous histrionic, chaotic wild & fervent horrisonant scream-stippled psychedelic sundry, or using neophyte terminology – “Noise”. The sodality consists of three antagonists – Aleh Kaheen (Nathan Holiday) on electric guitar, synthesizer & “processed effects”, Ebra Ziron on vocals & David Sheftel shifting bass & electronic effects. A massive menu of manoeuvres & modalities are mustered, but heaps of cacophonic, harsh, high-pitched, distraint & turbulent turmoil, string straining fret-foible & guitar grating, searing & psychedelic synths, harsh/super distorted Noise, Feedback, Power Electronics & stentorian frequencies. The bass is more peripheral but excellent, with it’s subtle skulking & more atmospheric expressions, more in an Avant-Garde ambit. & then there’s fucking Ebra! screaming, violent, demented & veering on the ridge of orgasm, lallating, gibbering..sometimes intensely feminine with bouts of brief tranquillity & even harmony, but mostly like a woman that’s just crawled out of a train-wreck with major ligament damage, in a blizzard, still speckled with her loved ones warm brain remnants…major, emotional extremism basically with all the theatrics on maximum. There are lyrics/dialogue as well, but they are difficult to decrypt through the distortion, feedback, reverb etc. she really is very’ very good though & has so many variations & themes. The two main tracks on this album flay the membrane for 19.34 & 24.22! This lot really were so ahead of the flock. Even by contemporary standards I consider this excellent, but Tunnel Canary have so much of what most modern Noise lacks, pronounced character. TC were much more associated with Punk, & I would imagine that Psychedelic, Avant-Garde & atonal/experimental music probably had a substantial influence (you could just as easily call these guys Avant-Psychedelic, especially as it’s 1980 goddammit!). I wonder if Sonny Sharrock has had an influence here? It would have been eleven years prior (1969) that he would of expelled his inimitably ground-breaking Monkey-Pokie-Boo LP on Actuel that was hailed as Avant-Garde, Free Jazz, Psychedelic, The New Music but can sit very comfortably under the Noisecore gonfalon & definitely precedes the kind of arena Tunnel Canary tore-it-up in. in 1981, Japan’s Hijokaidan would release their first album, treading in similar sonic terrain. Juxtaposing the two groups, TC emerge the clear victor with so much more definition style & variety, not to mention that Ebra stomps the absolute living shit out of Junko who was always a one trick pony. Either way, this is legendary & pioneering prognostication from a deliciously visionary sodality of early innovators. Scintillant as shit!

Rekd: (track 1) 1980, (track 2) 1981, (track 3) 1983

Label: self-released in 2006 (a Luminous Sky Diamonds production)