Always I Gnaw


Over the past decade Sult has created a thrillingly dynamic and visceral sound world, forging a musical unity while also asserting the radically unique languages of its three core members, Guro Skumsnes Moe (contrabass) and Håvard Skaset (acoustic guitar) from Norway along with Jacob Felix Heule (percussion) based in California. Their raw acoustic improvisations crackle with an energy that makes indirect communications reverberate on a cosmic level. Their music evokes natural phenomena; storms, landslides, tectonic frictions, lightning splitting forests of trees. Sult exists on the outer edges of free improvisation and the avant-garde, echoing the multi-layered, sonic intensity of AMM's Crypt era as well as Mauricio Kagel's most physical/textural work and the existential force of Helmut Lachenmann's "instrumental musique concrète". Always I Gnaw is the sharpest realization of Sult's vision to date. Over the course of three pieces the group deploys extended techniques and invents original approaches to their instruments with a joyous fervor. Moe's contrabass brims with primal urgency, sometimes providing ballast and at other times glancing away in unpredictable directions. Skaset's guitar scrapes and snaps like a fire's embers giving way to air, all the while Heul's percussive frictions percolate from a distilled concentration, piercing the sonic maelstrom. The title of the album's closing track, "The Freedom of Others Extends Mine To Infinity" quotes Mikhail Bakunin, the 19th century revolutionary anarchist, and perhaps perfectly encapsulates the uncompromising ethos and spirit that is embodied by Sult's music. The trio's distinct voices both splinter and resonate in sympathy; individual demonstrations of virtuosity become utterly unnecessary. The combination of quick-tempered interactions, noisy brutality and acoustic earthiness results in an album that glows with a healing, free-spirited wonder and an astoundingly unified wholeness. Featuring the photography of Aage Villy Skåret. Presented in three variant tip-on jackets with gloss film laminate finishes, contrasting uncoated paper and metallic spot colors. Includes 27" x 11.5" tri-fold insert printed on both sides. Heavy tip-on jacket with three variant covers, film laminate gloss, contrasting uncoated paper and metallic spot color. Pressed to high quality vinyl at RTI.