Exposé Online banner

Attrition — All Mine Enemys Whispers: The Story of Mary Ann Cotton
(Projekt 209, 2008, CD)

by K. Leimer, Published 2008-10-01

All Mine Enemys Whispers: The Story of Mary Ann Cotton Cover artThere is a persistent case to be made for metaphoric musics deriving from literary sources, even as such practice now belongs more and more to the tattered remnants of the Romantic era. Dark ambient itself seems a category designation pointing not to the music, but to the attitude behind the music, making the distinction a fairly subjective one. This set clearly qualifies on those terms, as All mine enemys whispers (paranoia from Psalm 41:7) draws its inspiration from The Story of Mary Ann Cotton, one of England’s more prolific and profligate serial killers. Attrition is comprised of Martin Bowes, responsible for all electronics and the Sewing Box, and members of Stromkern, High Blue Star and Rasputina contributing violins and vocals. (First 1,000 copies include replicas of Victorian Era Poison Bottle Labels – amuse your friends!) The result is a moody atmospheric suspension decorated with sparse piano phrases, sparse violin phrases and some appropriately Lady June-like vocalizations, at turns hysteric or operatic. Given the subject matter, the music does the requisite accretive job, building up slowly like poison in the blood. But the “concept” here seems needlessly burdensome. Side-by-side comparisons with the work of Death Ambient, for example, play out favorably enough. Still, the aesthetic underpinnings of Death Ambient’s work are clearly preoccupied with music as music, while Attrition somehow means to weld a 21st Century aesthetic to some Victorian sensibility dwelling “inside the mind” of a serial killer. That’s asking a lot of a string of notes, sustenuto or not.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2008 releases

Related artist(s): Attrition

Latest news

2018-02-18
Didier Lockwood RIP – Word reaches us today of the death of one of France's great jazz musicians, violinist Didier Lockwood. His playing bridged many worlds, from traditional jazz to fusion to progressive rock, and his talent can be heard on recordings by Magma, Clearlight, Pierre Moerlen's Gong, and many more. Lockwood was 62. » Read more

2018-02-15
10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more

2018-02-14
Tom Rapp RIP – Singer / songwriter Tom Rapp, best known with the band Pearls Before Swine, passed away on February 12, at the age of 70, after a battle with cancer. » Read more

2018-01-30
Bill Bruford Ventures into Uncharted Territory – Drum master Bill Bruford, veteran of some of the most creative bands in history (King Crimson, Yes, Genese, etc.), is sharing some of what he's learned about being a drummer and a musician in his new book, Uncharted: Creativity and the Expert Drummer, out on University of Michigan Press. » Read more

2018-01-18
Christian Burchard RIP – Multi-instrumentalist Christian Burchard, who founded the seminal band Embryo in 1969, has died at the age of 71. His January 17 passing was announced on the band's Facebook page. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Univers Zéro - Clivages – The word "darkness" is often prominently mentioned in descriptions of the music of Univers Zéro, and there are certainly aspects of this newest release that fit that mold. However,...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues