Dec 20, 2017

RhoDeo 1751 Aetix


Today's artists' are an underground band from the Netherlands that formed in 1979 at the height of the original punk explosion. Playing a hybrid of punk to advance their liberal socialist agenda (serving as the rough equivalent of a Dutch Crass), the Ex put out reams of records and propaganda during the '80s -- each released on a different Dutch label -- but in the '90s began to embrace industrial forms of percussion and improvisation more in line with Einstürzende Neubauten and Test Dept. Formed in the late '70s, the group debuted at the turn of the decade with Disturbing Domestic Peace.  Initially known as an anarcho-punk band, they have since released over 20 full-length albums of musical experiments and numerous collaborations blending punk and free jazz with styles of folk music from all over the world.. ...N'Joy

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The Ex's music has undergone significant evolution over the years from their beginnings as a punk band. Founded by singer Jos Kley (better known as G.W. Sok), guitarist Terrie Hessels, drummer Geurt and bassist René, the band debuted with a song titled "Stupid Americans" on the Utreg-Punx vinyl 7" compilation released by Rock Against records in Rotterdam. The release of their first 7" All Corpses Smell the Same followed shortly after that, in 1980. Through the decades their music has gradually developed into its current form of highly intricate, experimental punk/post-punk/no wave-inspired work.

Expanding beyond punk rock, The Ex have incorporated a wide array of influences, often from non-Western and non-rock sources. Some include Hungarian and Turkish folk songs, and more recently music from Ethiopia, Congo and Eritrea (the independence song of Eritrea is covered by The Ex to kick off their 2004 album Turn). Other examples of branching out stylistically include the improvised double album Instant and a release under the moniker Ex Orkest, a 20 piece big band assembled for performances at Holland Festival.

Throughout the early 1980s The Ex went through many line-up changes before settling on the core quartet of G.W. Sok on vocals, Terrie on guitar, Luc on bass and Kat on drums. In the early 1990s, Andy became the band's permanent 2nd guitarist. In 2003 Luc left the band after 19 years, to be replaced by double bassist Rozemarie Heggen. In 2005 Heggen in turn left the band and Colin (formerly of the Dog Faced Hermans) served as the band's bass player for recordings and tours with Ethiopian saxophone legend Getatchew Mekuria before becoming The Ex's sound board operator. Guitarists Andy Moor and Terrie Hessels have since filled in bass parts by switching off on baritone guitar.

The band has collaborated with many disparate artists, including UK anarchist band Chumbawamba (sometimes using the name Antidote), the Dog Faced Hermans (one former member, Andy Moor, has played guitar in The Ex since 1990), and with the late avant-garde cellist Tom Cora in the early 1990s, resulting in the album Scrabbling at the Lock (1991) and the follow-up And the Weathermen Shrug Their Shoulders (1993). The album In the Fishtank 5 (1999) was made with Chicago's Tortoise, and on In the Fishtank 9 (2001) they collaborated with members of Sonic Youth and the Dutch improvisers Instant Composers Pool Orchestra (ICP).

In 2009, after 30 years with the group, singer and co-founder G.W. Sok announced his departure from the band. Sok did so, believing he lacked sufficient enthusiasm to continue with the group, having decided to focus on writing and graphic design as well as singing in new musical projects with several other bands. His replacement is Arnold de Boer from the Dutch group Zea, with whom The Ex have toured and collaborated. In addition to singing, De Boer plays guitar and utilizes samples with The Ex.

The Ex is the subject of a documentary, Beautiful Frenzy (2004) by Christina Hallström and Mandra U. Wabäck, and the concert film Building a Broken Mousetrap (2006), directed by Jem Cohen. In 2008 the band was also featured in the film Roll Up Your Sleeves, directed by Dylan Haskins. In 2011 The Ex were chosen by Caribou to perform at and co-curate the All Tomorrow's Parties music festival in Minehead, England.

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Extremely dissonant anarcho-punk with a slightly timid A-side, but the B is absolutely nuts good. The noise explosion in "New Wars" had to have been something ELSE in 1980. They'd get better, yeah, but this isn't bad at all.

 The Ex - Disturbing Domestic Peace (flac  196mb)

01 The Sky Is Blue Again 2:01
02 Map 1:14
03 Outlook-Army 0:39
04 Sucking Pig 1:58
05 A Sense Of Tumour 4:00
06 Meanwhile 3:54
07 Rules 1:41
08 Squatsong 1:51
09 Warning-Shot 2:55
10 New Wars 2:46
+ Live-Skive:
11 Introduction 2:21
12 Human Car 1:48
13 Punk 1:47
14 Horse 1:12

    (ogg   )

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A Dutch group of communal anarchists (think of an Amsterdam-based Crass), the Ex are something of a rarity in political rock circles, in that their albums are at least as musically interesting as they are lyrically pungent. In the particular case of 1983's Tumult, the group's fourth album, its musical merit is at least partially due to the fact that Jon Langford of the Mekons and the Three Johns produced. Langford gives the band a slightly more structured sound, which turns out to be to their advantage; in so doing, Langford minimizes the group's obvious points of comparison (singer G.W. Sok sounds more than a little like the Fall's Mark E. Smith) and makes them sound more like their own band. The seven-minute opener, "Bouquet of Barbed Wire," builds slowly from a hypnotic guitar riff, adding instruments one at a time before exploding into an intense post-punk roar. The rest of the album continues in this defiant style, with the declamatory "Squat!" a musical and sociological high point, through the rest of this generous 13-track album. The closing "Island Race" ends with an industrial clanging that predates the early records by Test Department and Einsturzende Neubauten.

The Ex - Tumult (flac 329mb)

01 Bouquet Of Barbed Wire 6:58
02 Fear 2:17
03 Hunt The Hunters 3:34
04 Survival Of The Fattest 5:18
05 Red Muzak 2:44
06 Happy Thoughts 5:33
07 The Well-Known Soldier 2:22
08 Black And White Statements 4:39
09 Squat! 2:25
10 Same Old News 2:08
11 F.U.N.E.I.D.Y. 5:23
12 O.S.L. (New Schvienhunt League) 2:42
13 Island Race 7:17

The Ex - Tumult   (ogg  129mb)

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Blueprints For A Blackout moved towards a more industrial and tormented form of punk-rock, introduced by "Streetcars Named Desire", which featured ambient dissonance a la Cindytalk, followed by "Blueprints For A Blackout", that presented a more tribal and metallic The Fall, and "Rabble With A Cause", a free punk-jazz that felt like a more danceable version of Half Japanese. This was the general trend, as shown in the fragmented industrial-punk feedback of "Pleased To Meat You", and the abstract dissonance recitation of "A Goodbuy To You".

In the meantime, they diversified a bit with the more restrained "Boohoo" - but with the feedback drone providing a chilly atmosphere, and the ambitious industrial wasteland march "Grimm Stories", a sound laden with exotic elements in "A Plague To Survive", and also a sound that showed a common spirit with the Swans in "Food On 45", albeit not as apocalyptic. In a sense, the most ambitious track was the 8-minute folk-ethnic-punk "Scrub That Scum", that had some of Tuxedomoon's cosmopolitan flair, similar to the ambient waltz-requiem "Requiem For A Rip-Off".

Nothing overpowering, and definitely nothing as thick and elastic as the current Ex sound. While it's minimal, and each track is a bit simplistic (i.e., does one thing only with a vocal rant over it), this album sounds like very little else out there and could only come from the Ex.

 The Ex - Blueprints For A Blackout (flac 372mb)

01 Streetcars Named Desire / Animal Harm (Medley) 2:39
02 Blueprints For A Blackout 3:54
03 Rabble With A Cause 2:19
04 Requiem For A Rip-Off 2:52
05 Pleased To Meat You 4:17
06 A Goodbuy To You 3:39
07 The Swim 1:48
08 Boohoo 2:29
09 U.S. Hole 2:41
10 (Not) 2B Continued 1:10
11 Grimm Stories 4:52
12 A Plague To Survive 5:22
13 The Rise Of The Dutch Republic 3:53
14 Kidnap Connection 2:17
15 Fire And Ice 4:41
16 Jack Frost Is Innocent 2:53
17 Love You Till Eh 2:48
18 Food On 45 3:17
19 Scrub That Scum 8:18

The Ex - Blueprints For A Blackout   (ogg  158mb)

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Heavily percussive post-anarcho, fucking crazy stuff. The Fall comparisons do sort of make sense, at least ones to the famous two-drummer lineup, but this is considerably angrier, and perhaps more coherent in a sense because of that. It's also completely baffling, since this sound isn't really… on any of their other albums prior to this. Has some moments, but this is still a little too punishing. They've shifted the emphasis here from the calculated dissonance of the albums before it with a more generalized sort of noisiness.

You are fat. You are soft. You are weak of will. You are decadent. You are bourgeois. You are intellectually lazy. You will never learn. You need. You need The Ex. You need re-education. You need strength. You need discipline. You need repetition. You need repetition. You need repetition. You need Pokkeherrie.

The Ex - Pokkeherrie (terrible racket) (flac  362mb)
01 Nurse! 6:09
02 Soviet Threat 7:08
03 Mmm Crisis 3:29
04 1,000,000 Ashtrays 9:15
05 White Liberals 5:42
06 Everything We Never Wanted 4:28
07 Friendly Neighbors 4:20
08 Hit The Headlines 5:47
09 Rumours Of Music (The Original Soundcrack) 6:29

The Ex - Pokkeherrie     (ogg   143mb)

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the 'tumult' and 'terrible racket'! LOL! Haven't heard any by The Ex for years.