Yoshihide Sodeoka is a NYC-based video and noise artist and this ten-minute DVD compiles three of his works. Words do not quite do justice to Sodeoka’s artistry, but essentially “Video Metal” combines aggressively ugly and mangled guitar squall with synapse-frying and retina-searing abstract visuals. These videos are a mesmerizing, engulfing, and epilepsy-inducing sensory bludgeoning that is hard to forget.
All three pieces are very similar in their oppressively day-glo and kaleidoscopic visual aesthetic, but there is some definite variation musically. While all are unrelentingly hostile, caustic, and unmusical, “Psychedelic Death Vomit” and “Electric Hair Doom” are somewhat static and droning, while “Evil Erector” sounds like a lo-fi Oval remix of a bad metal guitarist shredding along to a power electronics record. That may perhaps sounds intriguing in theory, but the music is not particularly impressive when deconstructed or scrutinized on its own. Also, the video work is certainly deranged and hypnotic, but there is no depth, narrative, beauty, or anything that could make much of an emotional connection with anyone- “psychedelic death vomit” is actually a remarkably apt description of what Sodeoka has created here. That said, “Video Metal” succeeds masterfully as a sheer brutal audio/visual assault: I suspect that watching this DVD at a suitable volume is remarkably similar to taking way too much acid and having a very bad trip at an arcade. If that is the experience you are after, you have found your new messiah. Weird and scary stuff.
(limited edition of 100 wrapped in a hand-screen-printed poster) 7/10 -- Anthony D'Amico (20 August, 2009)