Illusion Is A Natural Condition

by Dave Phillips & Randy H.Y. Yau

  • Compact Disc (CD)

    Five years in the making, Illusion Is a Natural Condition brings together two of the finest noise artists the world has ever witnessed. Sure, Merzbow and Hijokaidan can hit you with their molten sounds of psychedelic excess; but San Franciscos Randy Yau and Switzerlands Dave Phillips achieve their tempestous recordings through a violent dichotomy between silence and sound. This sharp contrast effectively puts you on edge throughout the listening experience, as you never know when the next attack is going to arrive. In any given track, Yau and Phillips pack together recordings of their gutteral screams and dribbling gurgles of one of the actionists shoving something down his throat that just doesnt belong there. Occasionally, the sound of flies circle around the sickened vocalizations, as if investigating a hospital patient with a sucking chest wound. Pigs squeal. Demons roar. All of these sounds are compressed into tracks rarely longer than a minute, punctured by extended silences and ruptured by terse blasts of motorized noise and absurdly rendered ultra-violence that would bring joy (or is that pain?) to die-hard Wolf Eyes fans. Recommended noise for those with a very strong stomach. (

    These guys have been smacking away at this collaboration-by-mail noise freakout tennis match for five years. Lets say that again: FIVE YEARS. Thats a long time to pass recordings back and forth, in the process whittling once mighty redwoods of sound down to needle sharp audio-toothpicks suitable for piercing the eardrums of woodlice. Such fidelity to the cause of unholy screaming and hyper-tight edits is all too rare amongst fickle scenesters, and should be applauded. Plus, they make a dashing couple: respectively they hold the European and American crown in post-aktionist extreme vocal performance (conveniently, Rudolf lives in Japan, so he can fight for the Asian title with Masonna). Here they let the backwards gurgles and clogged-drain lung abuse soften you up before they start the panic and bust loose with a disorted flare of pitch shifted growled screaming that successfully turns human beings into lions. Good things are worth waiting for. (Drew Daniel)

    Packed in a jewel case with wrap around, all lovingly designed by Leif Elggren, comes a collaboration between Dave Philips and Randy Yau. Philips is a member of Ohne, Fear Of God and Schimpfluch Gruppe. Yau is known from his various releases on Ground Fault and 23Five Incorporated and plays a kind of noise music that is not too dissimilar from Philips. Illusion Is A Natural Condition was recorded over a period of five years, and all the even tracks on this are by Dave Philips reworking Yau, and the odd tracks are vice versa. There are no less than thirty seven tracks on this, some of these are very short. Both artists have taken notion of the Schimpfluch sound: lots of voice related sounds, burps and belches, cut very short, with likewise cut short electronic and analogue sounds. Although occasionally there are longer tracks, such as number seventeen (no titles). Even when this could be seen as noise music, its rather physical action music. Somehow I dont think these boys sit behind a desk to record whatever they are doing. Rather, it seems to me, they perform all sort of actions, involving sounds and their bodies to create the source material, which is then used by the other (and in which case they might sit down and work on it, but perhaps they perform more actions around them). Yau performs the somewhat longer tracks than Philips, but throughout its not easy to follow who did, and I deem this is not very important either. Its a very intense disc, leaving the listener rather breathless. Powerful, good noise. A rarity! (Frans De Waard, VITAL)

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collaborations culled between 2000 – 2005 by dave phillips and r. h.y. yau. assembled by: dave phillips. mastered by: r. h.y. yau. drawings by: leif elggren.

even tracks: dave phillips reworks rhy (+dp)
odd tracks: r. h.y. yau reworks dp (+ rhy)


released June 1, 2005



Dave Phillips Zurich, Switzerland

dp re/searches & ponders existences & behaviourisms and the greater connectivity. sound as a language, a conscience, a tool of metaphysics, opposing the restriction and reduction of life, activating primordial shared emotions. ritual protest music, sonic activism, therapeutical, cathartic & liberating sound communications. ringing in the era of humanimal. most dimensions are yet to be explored. ... more


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