The Norwegian noise duo Kennel – Morten Minothi Kristiansen, organizer of the Edge of Wrong festival series in South Africa for the past fifteen years and member of the duo Hotbox, on electronics, noise and vocals with drummer André Drage Haraldsen, who has worked with different bands, from jazz to metal, experimental music and noise – has been operating since 2014. Kennel performed in the AllEars festival and the MultiNofestivalen, and collaborated with like-minded noise makers such as bassist Håkon Nybø and psychic drones maker Sindre Bjerga, but only now releases its debut album, True Norwegian Happy Noise, and heading for a long tour in Spain. The album was recorded at Hotbox studio over two nights in April 2021.
Kennel describes its sonic output as a «wild rampage on the thresholds of audible extremes and ecstatic joy. Blissful tastes of sweat, blood and vomit, cathartic releases in cascades of harsh noise and percussion». The five brutal, super intense, and, well, noisy improvisations, owe much to the seminal work of Japanese noise pioneer Merzbow and to Norwegian Lasse Marhaug, including his duo with Maja Ratkje and the trio Slugfield with Ratkje and Paal Nilssen-Love (Merzbow and Marhaug collaborated and recorded several projects together).
Kennel, like other multifaceted noise masters who knew how to vary their noisy journeys with subversive and unsettling irony, offers its potential on pieces like «Hotbox» and «Laika». It demonstrates that it is more than focusing on the effect of intense noisy sounds and their immediate bodily experience for the listener or some high-octane and kicking-ass mayhem.
Morten Minothi Kristiansen (elec, feedback, contact mic, v, metal plate, pedals), André Drage Haraldsen (dr)