One of my favourite tracks on Sissy Spacek’s French Record is a piece based on the sounds of smashing glass called Really into The Haters. I’m slightly embarrassed, but man enough, to admit that I had not heard of The Haters until recently and therefore had no idea Really into The Haters was a sample based homage to a couple of US noise pioneers active since 1979.
I’m not sure how I missed these guys until now, they’re associated with both Merzbow and Maurizio Bianchi, but whatever. I’m here now and this record is great. What’s exciting about The Haters – besides the conceptual-performance aspect of their schtick which appeals to the art school kid in me – is that their sound is produced via the smashing, banging, clanging, rubbing and grating of everyday objects which produces a lush and ultimately warm tone despite the abrasive surface.
The jagged sound of smashed glass is a recurring motif that tantalises as much as it makes your skin crawl. Elsewhere they conjure the distant drone of thunder or perhaps a freight train, and I’m sure at one point the sound of scissors cutting through card board becomes a hypnotic rhythm. You can actually hear objects making contact with microphones which provides a human and organic base for the completely abstract nature of what they’re doing. I find the attention to texture on In the Shade of Fire incredibly appealing, and also refreshing when so much of the noise I hear at the moment is digitally driven, monotone and static.
This is a 2009 re-issue of their 1986 LP and I can’t recommend enough that you source a copy. I’m discovering The Haters have created a whole mythology around themselves and take a very conceptual approach to their live performances, which is something I’m intrigued by and keen to read more about. How did I ever miss these guys? I’ll be delving into their back catalogue for sure.