One of my favorite albums of all time, Buyer's Market is a disturbing and gut wrenching compilation of interviews with victims and survivors of rape, abuse, humiliation, and torment. Peter Sotos is best known for his work with the influential power electronics outfit Whitehouse, where he temporarily provided lyrics and concepts. This album is him (and any of the Whitehouse club in my opinion) at his absolute greatest. This album is NOT for the weak of heart, or those easily disturbed. This album is not a reflection of human emotion and suffering. This album IS those emotions, captured on tape.
Sotos does not make music. He does not play instruments. He has a sampler, yes, but he is not the of the cutter-upper sort that shows up so often in such labels as Seeland and Illegal Arts.
What Sotos makes is documentaries. Carefully-assembled documentations, sourced from news stations everywhere, committed to memory and disseminated to all who will listen. This is not the sound of shattered lives and broken souls. This IS those lives and souls, presented plainly, in a manner devoid of demonization, romanticization, or art. The side of the world we like to keep secret, the aspects of humanity we like to deny is presented here plainly and undeniably. No bells and whistles, no rampant optimism or pessimist bent, no opinion at all.
If you came here to listen to music, then this will come off as nothing more than cheap shock. Peter's works are little more than chained-together bits of news broadcasts, interviews, testimonials, and many things such as that, placed to fit a certain theme and stitched together in order. But if you came for a story, boy, does Peter have them--disturbing tales, depressing tales, tales of atrocities and the people they hit, each one a sordid exposée of the human mechanism's fallibility.
Whether you like it or not, the world is not always good.
And whether you like it or not, Peter Sotos has proof.
There is absolutely nothing about this album that would encourage a second listen. It's shocking yes, but it doesn't really offer anything beyond an initial shock. There is no real musical element to speak of. This goes for that Field Recordings bullshit too. At some point you have to look in the mirror and realize that you've gone too far. You are now listening to interviews of victims of rape, or a fucking guy shuffling papers. Come on, now
projectMalamute wrote:Like, here are a bunch of pictures of murdered children. Isn't this artistic and transgressive? Aren't you shocked?
You aren't getting anywhere close to describing his art.
Almost every person in Peter's writing is using another person. Using denies the object person his humanity. These characters hold an opinion of themselves that denies this basic relationship and identifies it as something else.
This person, this user, can be a criminal or pervert, sure, but also a psychologist, a policeman, a television presenter... anybody who takes on the subject matter of abuse and uses it to satisfy some desire. What Peter does is make the base relationships clear and moves that lens across a spectrum of behavior that is usually represented differently and sometimes trivially.
When you read something of his and feel a twinge of recognition, and you will, that's when you get the chills and want to throw up.
You also end up despising Nancy Grace.
However you choose to view the content of Buyer’s Market, it’s offering something that few other sources can. The extreme high majority of news reportage is biased, manufactured and at times, false. Buyer’s Market manages to glue together speech and language from hundreds of different sources, all sought out at painstaking dedication by Sotos. A sonic collage and emotive work of art, it strongly hints at the inadequate partiality and stolid nature of the press, which projects emotions for us to lap up whilst simultaneously skewing facts and inventing personalities. One thing’s for sure though, the events themselves will remain unchanged, and Sotos is clear to offer as many sides to the stories as he can. Yes it’s horrific, and yes, the crimes within here are gaudy and hideously unfair, but as McMartin reminds us, “there is no such thing as fair. ‘Fair’ is a word in the dictionary. If you think there’s such a thing as ‘fair’, go ahead and think it. It doesn’t mean anything."