Blackest Ever Black’s fourth annual label party will take place at Berlin’s Urban Spree venue on Saturday 15 November, 2014, presented in association with UnReal.
This is the first time the label has celebrated its birthday in its current base of Berlin, and follows last year’s two-room blow-out at Corsica Studios in London, which featured Prurient, Tropic of Cancer, Regis, Source Direct, Horsepower Productions and many more.
For this more intimate gathering on German soil, William Bennett will perform live as CUT HANDS, celebrating the release of his new album for Blackest Ever Black. Festival Of The Dead, due out in October, is the most potent distillation of Cut Hands’ delirious polyrhythmic energy to date, in which the spirits of santería and vaudou come together for a final rapturous celebration of oblivion. The indefatigable Bennett, pioneer of extreme electronic music and founder of Whitehouse, has refined and intensified Cut Hands’ percussive assault across two previous albums (released on his own Susan Lawly imprint) and a trio of 12″ singles for BEB and Downwards; his live invocations are always psychologically gripping, physically overwhelming affairs; in the nowhere-to-hide environment of Urban Spree, this one has the makings of a classic.
Another sub-cultural trailblazer and stalwart of Blackest Ever Black, Stuart Argabright, will also be joining us from New York to play his first BLACK RAIN live show in Europe since 2012 – back when he was touring in support of Now I’m Just A Number, BEB’s compilation of his visionary soundtrack work from the mid-90s. Most famously leader of post-punk minimalists Ike Yard, Argabright’s improbably eventful career has seen him fashion dystopian hip-hop in Death Comet Crew and erotic electro as Dominatrix, among numerous other ventures; but it’s Black Rain – which began life as a death metal band before mutating into the cyberpunk techno project it is today – that remains his most vital and compelling undertaking. New album Dark Pool is awork of hard-edged sonic fiction influenced by the writings of K.W. Jeter and Paolo Bacigalupi; musically, as well as conceptually, Argabright’s futurist impulse remains razor-sharp and indomitable.
DIÄT is a Berlin-based band with a hardcore background, who were brought together by their enthusiasm for bleak UK punk but ended up something closer to what they describe, perhaps not entirely seriously, as “tough new wave”; fans of Crisis, Killing Joke and The Mob will certainly feel at home with Diät’s unlikely synthesis of depressive drift and cranked, accelerated energy. One of the finest bands currently active in the German capital’s rudely healthy scene – a scene for which drummer Iffi’s Static Shock shop in Kreuzberg is an important hub – they will play live for us ahead of their debut LP release on Iron Lung.
RAIME‘s redoubtable Joe Andrews and Tom Halstead will also be joining us to DJ throughout the night, taking time out from intensive recording sessions for their sophomore album, due to be released on Blackest Ever Black in 2015. This duo’s tastes and influence have of course been central to the label since the very beginning, and as those who’ve attended our Before My Eyes nights and previous BEB showcases in London will attest, their carefully wrought and invariably head-cracking sets run the gamut from gothic abjection, brutalist punk and outsider electronics through to the seamiest grime, dancehall and jungle-tekno.
DJ support comes from NINA, who runs the Nina Trifft nights at the Golden Pudel in Hamburg, and who was responsible for the recent, riveting No Observable Effect Concentration mix for our Krokodilo Tapes imprint. Expect pure darkwave fire from this peerless selector.
Additionally, there will be some “SECRET” SPECIAL GUESTS dropping in to play some records and possibly some instruments – among them a notable Berlin-based artist whose Blackest debut is due in the coming months.
UPDATE: We can tell you that one of the no-longer-secret special guests will be POWELL. The Diagonal boss will bring his romper-stomping DJ style to bear on the late shift, both solo and back-to-back with Raime.
We don’t plan to make advance tickets available for this party, so please arrive early to avoid disappointment. Doors open around 10pm, and festivities will run all night; there will be a merch table, including one or two small items only available at this event.