By Eyal Hareuveni
What is Shitney? The female rulers of Sun Ra’s Saturn colony? Rebel refugees from the eighties synth-pop? Goddesses gibberish trash talk? Hyperactive tone geologists that will blow your head while drilling into the core of this planet? Witty feminist criticism of masculine-muscular free jazz? Most likely, all together and much more. When you think that you may grasp what Shitney is all about, Shitney will spin your ears and head again, leaving you dazed and confused, still laughing.
Shitney (you guessed right, originally titled Shitney Spears) brings together three of the finest ladies from the Copenhagen busy alternative and jazz scene, somehow all are on the fringe of musical normality, in their own special ways - Estonian sax player Maria Faust, leader of the groups Jazz Catastrophe and Sacrum Facere, described as one who believed she could one day become Alice Cooper when other girls went all coocoo with boys; Danish keyboards-guitar-electronics player Karine Amsler, from the group Television Pickup, portrayed as one who secretly built her first mini guitar when other girls played with the dolls; and Swedish vocalist Qarin Wikström, from the group Kostcirklen, who wrote her first political song and dressed up as a liquorice candy for her kindergarten party when other girls tried on mom’s high heels.
Shitney began working on 2015, experimenting and improvising with electro-acoustic ideas. Earth Core is the trio's debut album and each of the ten eccentric-poetic titles suggests a distinct sonic environment, an imagined excavation of metals and chemical substances, physical laws and paradoxes, an unpredictable mix of the concrete and abstract. “Compressed Tightly Together, Forced to Vibrate as Mean” indeed sounds like tons of sonic information compressed into a concise-chaotic journey, constantly moving fast-forward, while “Lemon Yellow Sintered Micro Crystals” soars gently in hazy ethereal space and “Towards Oxygen” dissipates into distant samples of abstract noises. “Black Oxide Coat in Air” sound like an extraterrestrial transmission of a wicked ritual while “Carbon – Sulfur - Situ Ruttu” offers mutated chants of an Estonian proverb “situ ruttu, karu tuleb!” (meaning: shit fast, the bear is coming!). “Siderophile Elements”, the only extended piece, is a 13-minute free-associative improvisation that blends wild, distorted-sounding guitar, atmospheric synth drones, tortured sax samples, and tempting female vocals into a surprisingly peaceful, kaleidoscopic trip. This colorful journey ends with “Graphite; Black, Diamond; Clear”, a hyperactive song for some futuristic computer game, using innocent eighties synth samples.
If there is some justice on this Earth, Shitney should headline festivals near your home.
Earth Core is distributed also in a limited edition, 50 pieces of heart-shaped, pink soaps with a dead wasp inside (with a download code), produced in Estonia. The wasps were hand-collected by the soap producer's family, and Shitney declares that it does know whether if the wasps' stingers were removed not.