the best of
by chuck & doug
Choug & Duck are Stephen Thomas and Dave Phillips, who met in Zurich in 1988 and created music together till 2000. Both have since become notable as highly active musicians in various outfits – Thomas perhaps most notably as a member of the Dead Brothers, Phillips as a member of the legendary Schimpfluch Gruppe and as a solo noise artist –, but this 80-minute compilation goes way back in time, unearthing unpublished documents of their musical creativity, from an era when various experimental musical strategies were tried and tested with a sense of fun that seems almost tangible on the release.
Back in the day, Choud & Guck recorded countless sessions from 1994 to 2000, but released next to no recordings. this compilation, culled from more than 33 hours of recordings, can be considered an important historical document – fully deserving of the heavy gilded frame on the cover worthy of a masterpiece in a museum. True to the spirit of the time when it was recorded, a cassette tape is the only adequate format for it.
As the artists' liner notes indicate, the recordings were made on audio tape, 8-track tape, and DAT – the latter two being bridge technologies into the age of digital recording that no one under the age of thirty has possibly even heard of. But the DIY distribution method at the time of recording would definitely have been a tape, as burners for CD-Rs only became commercially available shortly before the turn of the century.
Choke & Dog used samplers, drum machines, CD and tape players, a groovebox, guitar, bass, drums, voices – and they did it with a wild playfulness that not only appropriates found sounds (especially voices) in a humourously minimalistic way which seems typical of that age of analogue tape collage and limited sampler memory, but which also contrasts manic beats with ambient loops in ways that defy any categorisation. Releasing The Best of Dug & Chouck is a true honour and pleasure for attenuation circuit, because the global experimental underground our label has been promoting for well over a decade owes a lot to the tape experiments of previous decades. In other words, the older among today's digital practitioners have emerged from the primeval mud of tape hiss and mulching low-end frequencies echoing through this release, but on the other hand this is also (in parts!) one of the most danceable attenuation circuit albums ever. Surprised? We'd say it only goes to show that music has no boundaries.
File under: experimental, lo-fi, sound collage, electro, industrial
Released in 2023
limited to 100 copies
price: 10.00 EUR (excl. postage)
recorded 1994 – 2000 in zürich
mastered by dan suter at echochamber
choud & guck are stephen thomas & dave phillips