Jim ‘Koenjihyakkei create, intense and bombastic high energy progressive music that hearkens to Zeuhl (ie Magma and and their progeny), but in a very direct, pummeling way. They are propelled by the drumming of Ruins’ Yoshida Tatsuya and unison vocals compound the urgency and contolled dementia. Also be sure to check out Japanese Zeuhl outfits Happy Family and Bondage Fruit (their first few albums anyway). Also on the Zeuhl tip, I listen a lot to Belgian group Univers Zero: they harness s a similar dark prog as early King Crimson (cica “Red”) but infused with chamber music and shades of Bartok.’
JG has completed commissions for Kronos Quartet, Bang On A Can, Thyssen-Bornemisza ArtContemporary, Experiments In Opera, LEMUR, Zephyr Quartet, Jeffrey Zeigler among others, and is a member of the“freq_out” sound-art collective, curated by CM Von Hausswolff, who create on-site sound and light installations. In 2010, he received a fellowship from New York Foundation of the Arts in sound / composition. He has created solo sound installations and often performs live with a chamber ensemble version of his Manorexia project.
But of course one of the primary questions with regard to the standalone release of a soundtrack is whether it works disunited from the rest of the production. And, well, here the answer is yes and no. Thirlwell’s music is exciting, and in short doses works quite well. But to pretend that it’s not missing a big part of its effect—the actual reason for its being, really—is a bit pointless. Removed from its complimentary televisual images, the brawn exhibited by the music sounds like it’s overcompensating—which it is, intentionally so, but context is needed to understand why it’s doing so. The album itself doesn’t amalgamate into something grander during a sit-down listen. Just as the show would feel extremely hollow without Thirlwell’s music, Thirlwell’s music for The Venture Bros. without the Venture bros. themselves on screen lacks a defining sense of structure and reason. But it does make you want to watch a few episodes.