I caught the Japanese musician Masami Akita's performance in Wellington in November. Known generally under the name "Merzbow" he is frequently called "the godfather" of noise. The performance was so loud that even though it lasted under an hour, it's probably lucky i've still got my hearing, as my ears rang for days (yes I stupidly did not wear earplugs!). I found this video of a performance recorded a couple of months earlier at Oberlin College in Ohio, and thought it would be interesting for those who don't run in the opposite direction of such sounds. Irish academic Paul Hegarty in his fine study Noise/Music: A History (Continuum Books, 2007) devotes a whole chapter to Merzbow and writes: "Duration, volume, harshness, interference, luring a listener into attributing meaning, and anti-virtuosity are all tools that work through the layers of harsh noises, pulses, oscillations, crashes and explosive bursts in Merzbow recordings. The quantity of his releases, even within the prolific production of Japanese noise musicians, is immense, to the point where Masami Akita could constitute a genre in his own right." For much more on Merzbow, see: http://merzbow.net/