Sheathed in some of the best album artwork of 2015, Mika Vainio and Franck Vigroux reveal the buzzing and psyched-out electronic sculptures of 'Peau froide, léger soleil' on Shapednoise's Cosmo Rhythmatic label.
The latest and arguably most powerful in a long line of collaborations between the Finnish producer and his peers aesthetically finds him closest to the crushing electronics + processed guitar equations of 'Life (… It Eats You Up)' (2011) or 'Kilo' (2013), but also with a couple of brilliant runs into vocodered, sidereal electronics that really set this record apart.
Three years in the making, following a live collaboration in Paris 2012, 'Peau froide, léger soleil' is an exercise in sensitive intensity and spatial scale, seamlessly mapping Vigroux's alchemical guitar process into Vainio's free swaggering structures and tonal extremities.
From the deep freeze intro and craggy peaks of opener 'Deux', they take in the ice palace designs of 'Mémoire', which first reveals the strange voices that come to haunt the rest of the record, emerging from the buzzsaw blasts and subbass waves of 'Souffles' like the ghost of Bruce Haack, or creeping like hyaline spectres from the microtonal gloam of 'Ravages'.
However, if you're after out-and-out Vainio wreckage, they excel at that too with later trax such as the white-out guitar storm of 'Parabole', and certainly in the finishing move of funked-up electro bass riffs and banking amp buzz entitled 'Le crâne tambour'.
Effectively it's the heaviest you'll hear from this icy and bloodied corner of the field this year, and surely marks the Cosmo Rhythmatic label as one to watch.
Comes with a free download of the album dropped into your account at midnight.