June 30, 2008

Total - Sky Blue Void (Freek Records, 1994)...

Total was the side project of Skullflower guitarist Matthew Bower, and actually predates his more well-known band (Total sprang into existence in 1982). It was originally the group that evolved out of Pure, with much of the early Skullflower's same lineup; some of them, particularly Alex Binnie and Stefan Jaworzyn, played in Zos Kia as well. Somewhere between 1985-1987 (depending on whose memory you trust best), Total mutated into Skullflower, and Total subsequently became Matthew Bower's solo project. At that point it served as a more "ambient" counterpart to Skullflower's wall-of-noise approach; in recent years, however, the dynamic reversed itself until Total's releases were often considerably noisier and more chaotic than Skullflower's.