Nastrom – Cornerghosts (2015) Doom/Industrial/Downtempo from: Serbia

Esta es la segunda entrega de la serie D.I.Y. o hazlo tu mismo!, La historia de cómo encontré esta música oscura y minimalista se remonta a la época en que navegaba por el foro de Avalanchers de los fanáticos de Godflesh y había un post en donde los fans publicaban su material que grababan con sus bandas o proyectos en solitario inspirados por esta mole de pesadez noventera inglesa. En el post escuché todos los proyectos y el que más llamó mi atención fue este llamado NASTROM de nuestro camarada desde Serbia: Stevan y descubrí que tiene un único álbum compuesto y ejecutado por el mismo que databa del 2015,. Esto es música visceral, oscura, oprimente y asquerosamente repetitiva que nos deleita con una atmósfera inigualable de rock industrial fusionado con sludge y lugares abandonados, todo hecho por Stevan mismo! Una One Man Band!…. Quedan advertidos hermanos. Salud!.

This is the second installment of the D.I.Y. Or do it yourself one man bands!, The story of how I found this dark and minimalist music goes back when I was browsing the Avalanchers forum of Godflesh fans and there was a post where fans published their material that they recorded with their bands or solo projects inspired by this mass of English ninety heaviness. In the post I listened to all the projects and the one that caught my attention was this so-called NASTROM of our brother from Serbia: Stevan, and I discovered that he has a single album cmoposed and executed by the same one that dated from 2015. This is visceral, dark, oppressing and disgustingly repetitive music that delights us with an unbeatable atmosphere of industrial rock fused with sludge and abandoned places, all made by Stevan himself! A One Man Band! …. Brothers are warned. Salud!.

Escrito por: Miguel Krieg
Mentadas de madre a: sonidosprimitivos1@gmail.com
para sonidosprimitivos.com

 

OFFICIAL FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/NastromKrautdoom/

BUY MUSIC HERE: https://pmkrecords.bandcamp.com/album/cornerghosts


 

 

After carefully listening to albums excellently produced for commercial human consumption during my 8 hours of work (see my list of rate your music whishlist) I return to the Mexico City outskirts to hear the raw and visceral product of my brothers of the world … and walking along by my daily work route, the introduction of the movie “The Forgotten” comes to mind: “the homes of misery that house malnourished children …” and that is our situation, We are not musicians helped by mom or dad to buy their instruments, we started with a love of those sounds that intrigue us since childhood, all those eagerness to create gave fruit to make our own recordings by our means, go selling and buying our instruments and amplifiers , compose and re-record demos until you have a satisfactory product. I still remember how I started, and maybe it’s your case brothers! … The misery and the need will always produce good and bad things, such is the case of this series that we have been presenting and in this second installment, Nastrom from Serbia with Stevan: the mastermind behind everything.

Después de escuchar detenidamente albums excelentemente producidos para el consumo humano comercial durante mis 8 horas de trabajo (ver mi lista de whishlist de rate your music) regreso a los barrios bajos de la ciudad de México con ansias de escuchar el producto crudo y visceral de mis hermanos del mundo… y caminando por mi ruta diaria de trabajo, me viene a la mente la introducción de la pelicula de “Los Olvidados”: “los hogares de miseria que albergan niños malnutridos…” y esa es nuestra situación, no somos músicos que les ayudó mamá o papá a comprarse sus instrumentos, comenzamos por un amor propio a esos sonidos que nos intrigan desde niños, todas esas ansias de crear dieron fruto a realizar nuestras propias grabaciones por nuestros medios, ir escalando nuestros instrumentos y amplifiadores, componer y re grabar demos hasta tener un producto satisfactorio. Aún recuerdo como comencé, y tal vez sea su caso hermanos!… Los barrios bajos y la necesidad siempre producirán cosas buenas y malas, tal es el caso de esta serie que venimos presentando y en esta segunda entrega, Nastrom de Serbia con la mente maestra Stevan detrás de todo.

Sonido Nastrom./Nastrom sound.

The key bands to know the sound of Nastrom is Godflesh and the mastermind behind godflesh Justin Broadrick who has taught us how to be creative and not fear what people say about all our projects that we are doing, has taught us to work with the equipment that we have and appreciate our own capabilities. It is worth mentioning that I met Nastrom in the old Avalanchers forum in a post where users published their projects directly influenced by Godflesh. In the short interview we did via email with Stevan, comes the bands he was inspired to create this masterpiece with just one member.

Las bandas clave para conocer el sonido de Nastrom es Godflesh y la mente maestra detrás de todo Justin Broadrick que nos ha enseñado como ser creativos y no temer al que dirán de todos nuestros proyectos que vayamos realizando, nos ha enseñado a trabajar con lo que se tenga a la mano y a apreciar nuestras propias capacidades. Cabe mencionar que conocí a Nastrom en el viejo foro de Avalanchers en un post en donde los usuarios publicaban sus proyectos influenciados directamente por Godflesh. En la entrevista corta que hicimos via email con Stevan, viene las bandas por las que él se inspiró para crear esta obra maestra con un solo integrante.

“realmente todo el árbol familiar de la primer alineación de Napalm Death (Bullen/Harris/Broadrick) es una fuente inagotable de experimentalismo sonoro”

 

The rhythmic base is created by a drum that sounds like a ritual, minimalist and sober …, the bass is the one that carries the most important role and is executed according to different sound textures adding combinations of dissonances, distortions, harmonics and strings beaten until generating a harmonic bless. What really gives a textural plus to the themes is the ghostly voice and the guitar licks that accompany each repetition, just like in the masterful Scorn album “Colossus”, really the whole family tree of the first lineup Napalm Death (Bullen / Harris / Broadrick) is an inexhaustible source of sound experimentalism, see for yourself!

La base rítmica esta creada por una batería programada a modo de ritual, minimalista y sobria…, el bajo es el que lleva el papel más importante y está ejecutado de acuerdo a diferentes texturas de sonido agregando combinaciones de disonancias, distorsiones, armónicos y cuerdas golpeadas hasta generar un bend armónico. Lo que realmente da un plus textural a los temas es la voz fantasmal y los licks de guitarra que acompañan y orquestan de manera sublime cada repetición, justo como en el magistral álbum de Scorn “Colossus”, realmente todo el árbol familiar de la primer alineación de Napalm Death (Bullen/Harris/Broadrick) es una fuente inagotable de experimentalismo sonoro, compruébenlo por ustedes mismos!.

napalm death family tree

The nastrom sounds are guts, atmosphere, dissonances, ethereal light, gloomy nightmare mantra and sound textures that suggest a sound landscape, just as musicians says as like Mr. Broadrick of Godflesh, Mr. Aphex Twin, mick harris of Napalm Death and his Scorn project, drum and bass musicians, Mr. Bill Laswell and John Zorn, some industrial bands, hardcore punk and post punk eighties, and Miles Davis himself! … it’s not about virtuosity, it’s about the sound texture and the musical landscape that suggests or projects to our brains while we delight in each repetitive note as a shamanic song. It is worth mentioning that maybe Stevan was also influenced by Om and Al cisneros since sometimes his music gets scratched in the hypnotic! and it truly creates a melancholic and lonely environment (and not depressive as Stevan remarks in the interview), strangely it gives me a sense of well-being to hear Nastrom’s Cornerghosts again and again … let’s begin to philosophize and move the context of the city ​​where this music was created: the lonely and quiet streets of Kovačica in northern Serbia to the chaotic megalopolis: Mexico City, as I walk the streets of a rainy afternoon in the city. In case you, Latin American apes do not know where Serbia is, I leave a map:

El sonido nastrom son tripas, ambiente, disonancias, luz etérea, mantra melancólico pesadillezco y texturas de sonido que sugieren un paisaje sonoro, justo como lo dicen músicos como el señor Broadrick de godflesh, el señor Aphex Twin, mick harris de Napalm Death y su proyecto Scorn, los músicos de drum and bass, el señor Bill Laswell y John Zorn, algunas bandas de industrial, hardcore punk y post punk ochentero, el propio Miles Davis!… no se trata del virtuosismo, se trata de la textura sonora y el paisaje musical que sugiere o proyecta a nuestros cerebros mientras nos deleitamos con cada nota repetitiva como un canto chamánico. Cabe mencionar que tal vez Stevan también fue influenciado por Om y Al cisneros ya que en ocasiones su música llega a rayar en lo hipnótico!,. y verdaderamente crea un ambiente melancólico y solitario (y no depresivo como re afirma Stevan en la entrevista), extrañamente me genera una sensación de bienestar el escuchar una y otra vez el Cornerghosts de Nastrom… empecemos a filosofar y traslademos el contexto de la urbe en donde fue creada esta música: las calles solitarias y tranquilas de Kovačica al norte de Serbia a la caótica megalópolis: Ciudad de México, mientras camino por las calles de una lluviosa tarde en la urbe. Por si ustedes, simios de latinoamérica no saben donde está Serbia, les dejo un mapa:

 


Esta vez en la isla desierta con STEVAN LENHART, el realiza una selección de temas que influenció a NASTROM y que probablemente escucharía para siempre si se encontrara en esa isla. tal vez una isla volcánica ubicada en el circulo polar ártico… aunque es una decisión dificil!, escuchen por ustedes mismos hermanos!/ This time on the desert island with STEVAN LENHART, he did a selection of songs that influenced on the sound of NASTROM and a songs that he would probably listen to forever if he was on that island… maybe volcanic one located in the Arctic circle … although it is a difficult decision!, Listen for you same brothers!


Filosofando en la miseria/Philosophizing in misery.

I must emphasize that the music I listen to is automatically transferred to my environment, not to the original environment where it was created, Nastrom brings me peace, that peace that I don’t find in a city like Mexico City.

Debo recalcar que la música que escucho es trasladada automáticamente a mi entorno, no al entorno original en donde fué creada, Nastrom me produce paz, esa paz que no encuentro en una ciudad como ciudad de méxico.

While listening to CORNERGHOSTS I can visualize myself in any alley of any overcrowded dark city and with anxiety oppressing my brain like machines that cut the bone of the flesh, that damn trick of being stuck to the phone and losing myself of reality, grumpy and haggard faces of people who praise vice and denigration. Cornerghosts is for me the vile reflection of an industrialized city where you are one more gear of the machinery that has no control!, The repetitive riff next to the bass line with bends and the slight change of notes to give way to a slight variation shows the co-existence of living in the rat race or in a dead end. The extremely minimalist drums give it a rhythm that may go unnoticed by everyone but that rhythm is there; on the train tracks, on the beams of a collapsed bridge or on the foundations of an abandoned collapsed building or the leak that crosses the foundations of a large avenue. The only place where the mind finds rest is in the dark! Thousands of temptations stalk us! Cornerghosts invites us to look in the cold and lonely corner of any construction where there may be a temporary refuge to the urban hell… maybe!

Mientras escucho CORNERGHOSTS me puedo visualizar en cualquier callejón de cualquier ciudad sobrepoblada, oscuro y con la ansiedad oprimiendo mi cerebro como máquinas que cortan el hueso de la carne, esa maldita maña de estar pegado al teléfono y perderme de la realidad, rostros malhumorados y ojerosos de gente que alaba al vicio y la denigración. Cornerghosts es para mi el reflejo vil de una ciudad industrializada en donde eres un engrane más de la maquinaria que no tiene control!., El riff repetitivo junto a la línea de bajo con bends y el ligero cambio de notas para dar paso a una leve variación nos muestra la cotideanidad del vivir en la carrera de la rata o en un callejón sin salida. Las baterías sumamente minimalistas le dan un rítmo que tal vez pase desapercibido para todos pero ese rítmo se encuentra ahí; en las vías de tren, en las vigas de un puente colapsado o en los cimientos de un edificio derruído abandonado o la gotera que traspasa los cimientos de una gran avenida. El único lugar en donde la mente encuentra descanso es en la oscuridad!,. Miles de tentaciones nos acechan!. Cornerghosts nos invita a mirar en la esquina fria y solitaria de cualquier construcción en donde tal vez se encuentre un refugio temporal al infierno citadino.

 

I do not know Serbia but I imagine the city where Stevan, ives, must be a lonely, cold city with a monotonous life reflecting its music, Ruins and Ruins is repetitive, hypnotizing and relaxing, shamanic !, the bass riff with octaves and fingering is wonderful, no more is needed !, the lyrics are few and Stevan uses his voice more as an instrument that textures each theme instead of wanting to express something poetic to how we are accustomed unfortunately. The minimalist letter invites us to abandon accelerated life and find peace and harmony in the darkness of a forest surrounded by grass walls, we are so accustomed to our city garbage that it is unthinkable to abandon or return to the basics.

No conozco Serbia pero me imagino la ciudad donde habita Stevan, Kovačica, debe ser una ciudad solitaria, fría y con una vida monótona reflejo de su música, Ruins and Ruins es repetitivo, hipnotizante y relajante, chamánico!, el riff del bajo con octavas y punteado con los dedos es maravilloso, no se necesita más!, las letras son pocas y Stevan utiliza más su voz como un instrumento que texturiza cada tema en lugar de querer expresar algo poético a como estamos acostumbrados desgraciadamente. La letra minimalista nos invita a abandonar la vida acelerada y encontrar la paz y armonía en la oscuridad de un bosque rodeado de paredes de hierba, estamos tan acostumbrados a nuestra basura citadina que es impensable abandonar, regresar a lo básico.

The valley of decisions (Valley of decisions( is what we face every day, the infinite possibilities we have when making a decision and its possible consequences, in a busy and collapsed city there is no time to make these decisions, Stevan whispers “This time , I’ll be different, very different “, I whisper the same thing every day, however I end up doing the same old crap, talking to the same people who don’t deserve it, cursing my same fate, and every day I get up from my 20 dollar bed  whispering to me, “this time it will be different”. The bass riff attacks the whole theme, it is impressive how each sectionare  worked despite the fact that Nastrom’s canon is repetition and heaviness in its chords.

“Stevan susurra “This time, gonna be different, very different”, yo me susurro a diario lo mismo, sin embargo termino realizando la misma basura de siempre”

 

El valle de las decisiones Valley of decisions es lo que a diario nos enfrentamos, las infinitas posibilidades que tenemos al tomar una decisión y sus posibles consecuencias, en una ciudad ajetreada y colapsada no existe el tiempo para tomar estas decisiones, Stevan susurra “This time, gonna be different, very different”, yo me susurro a diario lo mismo, sin embargo termino realizando la misma basura de siempre, hablando a las mismas personas que no se lo merecen, maldiciendo mi misma suerte, y cada dia que me levanto de mi colchón de 800 pesos me susurro, “esta vez será diferente”. El riff al bajo lleva el mando de todo el tema, es impresionante como trabajó cada sección a pesar de que el canon de Nastrom es la repetición y la pesadez en sus acordes.

What I have always wanted the most since I live in the collapsed city is to escape to the periphery, Escape To Periphery, the mantra thunders in my ears, the bass carrying the melodic line and the base, the drums marking the rhythm and Stevan with his voice Ghostly imploring an escape from concrete, noise and decay, unfortunately we are victims and participants of the same game, making the same mistakes one after another, how many times have I tried not to fall back into my mistakes of the past? However, a strong willpower is required.

Lo que siempre he deseado más desde que vivo en la ciudad colapsada es escapar a la periferia, Escape To Periphery, el mantra truena en mis orejas, el bajo llevando la línea melódica y la base, la batería marcando el rítmo y Stevan con su voz fantasmal implorando un escape del concreto, del ruido y la decadencia, lamentablemente somos víctimas y partícipes del mismo juego, cometiendo los mismos errores una tras otra vez, ¿cuántas veces he tratado de no volver a caer en mis errores del pasado? Sin embargo se requiere de una fuerte fuerza de voluntad.

“Escape to periphery es lo que siempre deseo cada mañana que pongo un pie en esa maldita ciudad: ver un amanecer en las montañas, en el desierto, en una planicie sin vida humana alrededor de miles de kilometros.”

The riff that enters after those batteries with echo effects of the DUB classics, is wonderful brothers! Truly HEAVY without being pretentious, to the point! … and surely Al Cisneros would be proud of our brother and friend Stevan who created all from scratch and without anyone’s help. Escape to periphery is what I always want every morning that I set foot in that damn city: to see a sunrise in the mountains, in the desert, in a plain without human life around thousands of kilometers. A strangely misanthropic vision.

El riff que entra después de esas baterías con efectos de eco de los clásicos del DUB, es maravilloso hermanos!, en verdad HEAVY sin ser pretencioso, al grano!… y seguramente Al Cisneros estaría orgulloso de nuestro hermano y amigo Stevan que creó todo desde cero y sin ayuda de nadie. Escape to periphery es lo que siempre deseo cada mañana que pongo un pie en esa maldita ciudad: ver un amanecer en las montañas, en el desierto, en una planicie sin vida humana alrededor de miles de kilometros. Una visión extrañamente misántropa.

ENTREVISTA A STEVAN LENHART, MENTE MAESTRA TRAS NASTROM!. Interview with Stevan Lenhart.

 

SP: I have understand that there is a one man project called nastrom, why you decided to work with yourself on this.

– Nastrom is primarily one-man project with me as the only constant member. For some time I played some live shows together with a guitarist, also had a few rehearsals with saxophone player, but I am doing all the recordings and composing all the songs alone. I am playing bass guitar, doing some minimal vocals and using drum machine instead of having a real drummer. That’s partly because I couldn’t find a proper drummer in my town, but actually I like playing with rhythm machine, I like its industrial repetitive sound and the atmosphere it creates.

S.P. How many years since nastrom started?

– It started in October 2012, but previously I have played in a couple of other projects, such as experimental ambient project Pamba or industrial/darkrock instrumental duet Defaced But Beautiful.

S.P. There’s a very gloom and dark sound on your music, why?

– I think this kind of sound just comes naturally to me, and I feel at home when expressing myself through heavy and darker music. But even if it’s gloomy, I think it’s not depressive, it is more melancholic.

S.P. Could you tell people how is the experience of working alone? and how to encourage yourself to do this (for people who are waiting to get a whole band)?

– Working alone is good if you want to fully achieve your own vision of the sound without being distracted by someone else. And you don’t have to argue with anyone about how the song should really sound. Of course, the ideas of other people can be great if you’re lucky enough to find the right collaborators. But if there are none of them in your area, you should try playing alone without waiting for the whole band. Recording more instruments by yourself at home or in a studio is not a problem, but if you also want to play live as a one-man band, you should have some proper equipment. It depends on the type of your music and the whole concept of your project.

S.P. How is your country? How is the music scene over there? There are people making music like yours?

– Serbia has a long tradition of rock and alternative music and it actually goes back to our previous country Yugoslavia, which was culturally well developed, but ended in civil wars between its own nations. Today, there are still some interesting bands in Serbia, playing various styles. The most of the action is happening around the cities of Belgrade and Novi Sad, but there are smaller underground scenes in many other towns as well. Of course, there are some other people playing dark and heavy music close to my sound, but not so many. You can check out Serbian online label PMK Records for more info about some other activities: pmkrecords.bandcamp.com. If you plan to visit Serbia, I can recommend Mount of Artan festival, it is held every year under the pyramidal mountain Rtanj and it gathers mostly heavy sounding underground bands (mainly doom, sludge, postmetal) from this region and close countries.

S.P.. What are the main influences on your music?

– Desolate places, empty streets, ruins, old trees, strange weather, dark desires. Bands like Scorn, Cathedral, Godflesh, Loop, Tuxedomoon, Clock DVA, Swans, Savage Republic, Black Sabbath, Motörhead, Voivod, Clutch, early Anathema… Underground comics and movies, outsider writers…

S.P. What are your equipment to record your music?
– My main instrument is bass guitar and I play vintage Ibanez made in 1976, also a couple of delay and distortion pedal effects. For composing and recording rhythms I use two old models of Roland and Alesis rhythm machines. For vocals I like to experiment with effects to get some unusual sounds of voice. All in all, it is quite basic equipment, but it works fine to me, because I always concentrate more on playing music than dealing with technical stuff.

S.P. Have you ever played live? How is the experience of playing live?

– So far I have played around ten live shows as Nastrom. It was mostly shows in smaller clubs together with other underground projects, but also some festivals. I like playing live because of the intensity of the sound and sharing the energy with other bands and audience. It is mainly DIY, total underground level, so there are sometimes technical problems and the sound is not always perfect, but the experience is always good, because in the end it is all about keeping the underground music and spirit alive.

S.P. Are there any future releases from Nastrom?

– Yes, right now I am preparing the 3rd EP release of Nastrom. The main reason for taking it quite long since the previous release is because the studio where I was recording the first material was closed, so I had to find the other one. But I have composed the new songs and already recorded the demo tracks, so the new stuff is on the way.

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