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Venetian Snares x Daniel Lanois Venetian Snares x Daniel Lanois Timesig

It’s a collaboration precisely no one saw coming: noise agitator and extreme electronic futurist Venetian Snares and rock record producer, guitarist and fellow Canadian Daniel Lanois, who is famed for his work with Bob Dylan and Neil Young. Though it sounds like an outlandish proposition, Venetian Snares x Daniel Lanois is, in places, surprisingly beautiful. Recorded live in a former Buddhist temple in Toronto, it’s a project that seems to have inspired its participants. Lanois has said of the record: “To come upon a new form reassures the head that frontier lives on.”

Venetian Snares (aka Aaron Funk) is known best for hyperactive splurges of speedy digital percussion and splintered jungle breaks. These intense bursts of electronic rhythm frequently surface here, though mixed with Lanois’ intensely mellow echo-drenched country guitar, they take on a new form. On HpShk5050_P127 dubby bass underpins warm washes of psychedelic pedal steel, while blasts of mechanically altered beats dip in and out of the mix. Night_MXCMPV1_P74 is an impressionistic ambient affair, where Funk’s skittering rhythms twist and contort beneath the dramatic skies evoked by Lanois’ playing.

The combination is strangely soothing: neither artist compromises their distinct identities, yet their polarised sounds seem to slot together naturally. The open-minded will find much to enjoy on this weird and wild combination.