Deafkids / Rakta Live at SESC Pompéia LP

The evolution of São Paulo’s RAKTA and Rio’s DEAFKIDS from, respectively, gothic post-punx and a solo crust project into their recent psych-freak heights has been hugely satisfying to witness, and also seemed to bring the two groups into each other’s orbit. Witnessed them both smash it live when they toured Europe together in 2019, including a decent chunk of RAKTA’s set which in fact saw both bands onstage—bringing us to this album, recorded live in São Paulo a little later in the year with all six members performing as a singular noise unit. You get two songs each from the most recent RAKTA and DEAFKIDS albums, plus both sides of the collaborative 7″ they made for that tour, and not only is it a spot-on recording, for the most part it sounds notably different—jammier, trippier, wormholier—to the studio versions. In this, Sesc Pompeia gets past the common problem of complete pointlessness associated with live albums. The presence of two drummers is key, helping to make RAKTA’s “Miragem” into a major Krautrock rave-up, and the rendition of “Espirais Da Loucura” by DEAFKIDS that closes this LP gets on a buckwild cosmic jazz tip.

Rakta Falha Comum LP

RAKTA  seems to be constantly all around the world, dropping new records, changing members along the road while not only maintaining but upgrading their sound. All the events around them did not exhaust but enforced their sound. For proof here is Falha Comum, another LP from one of the hardest working bands in the business. They create an otherworldly environment with multiple layers of spaced-out sounds based on the collision of bass and drums that are primal instruments and electronics that supply the unclassified noise ornaments. Rhythm-centric music covered with alien noises both feels as a ritual and the epiphany itself, thus a whole process that moves you through stations. It travels via a childlike state where due to unfamiliar surroundings and confusing circumstances everything is frightening and enchanting at the same time, but time seems slower due to the eventful ceremony. It works as well as the songs after a point evolve to scenes that blend in to an experience. The spooky, surreal, beautiful atmosphere is almost touchable and through its pigeon holes leaks the haunted, echoed-out howling which reminds us that the environment has been created through people. The density of the record is loading a lot on the listener, yet when it’s over, silence sounds harsh.