\ / | ----- /\ | \ / |== |== | / | \ / Week 6
\ / | | / \ | \ /\ / | | |/ | \ / Number 160
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RAFAEL TORAL - AERIOLA FREQUENCT (CD by Perdition Plastics)
INSTITUT FUER FEINMOTORIK - WEINIG INFORMATION: KEIN TITEL (miniLP by
Staubgold)
LILITH - FIELD NOTES (CD by World Domination)
ROEL MEELKOP - 7(PERCEPTIONS) (CD by Staalplaat)
YVES DAOUST - MUSIQUES NAIVES (CD by Empreintes Digitales)
GOEM - REDUKTIE (CD by Noise Museum)

 

RAFAEL TORAL - AERIOLA FREQUENCY (CD by Perdition Plastics)
Toral is a guitarist who has gained some recognition, mainly through his
collaborations with Thurston Moore and Jim O'Rourke. His solo material
shows a great interest in fields, soundfields, soundpatterns or what shall
we call it: long stretched tones, usually played by the guitar, and that
have little changes going round. Not entirely ambient, not entirely
improvised, certainly not jumpy going back and forth. The two pieces on
this CD are made with just feedback (not uncommonly to use for a guitarist,
I'd say looking a history). Not sound is fed into the machines, it's sound
feeding itself with more sound. But more is less here. Both pieces (which
certainly don't sound the same!) evolve slowly, probably without moving. I
am reminded of a roman catholic ritual were they make two steps forward and
then one back: this music is kinda like that. Whenever it goes forward, it
seems to be going backward at the same time. And just before that, and just
after that. If you are with us for a long time, you know I simply just like
this kind of work. (FdW)
Address: <perditionplastics@ameritech.net>

INSTITUT FUER FEINMOTORIK - WENIG INFORMATION: KEIN TITEL (miniLP by Staubgold)
Their name attracted my attention before, by their selfreleased first 10"
and 12" - obscurely packed of sounds that seemed to be culled from records.
Here on their 3rd vinyl, they tell us more: they use records, but not any
of the sound signals, but they prepare them with paper, plastic, adhesive
tape etc. From the recordings they make, they create their new music. And I
am impressed: they can be the new Oval, using vinyl instead of CD's. Their
music has a drive, a groove if you may, to it. It has breaks, so it might
be even songs. Very dry-ish recorded (that is, as in not much sound
effects). It's kinda like techno. The only thing that bothers just a little
bit: it has not much high end sounds in there. But then, I think they will
manage with that problem. So write their name down: they are from the
Cologne area, and I'm sure they will soon get records to remix (I know a
couple to send them, so were is that addres?), and their name will be a
buzzword around. (FdW)
Address: <a2581949@smail.rrz.uni-koeln.de>

LILITH - FIELD NOTES (CD by World Domination)
Long before Aube made monochrome, single sound source recrds, Lilith made a
beautiful record with just stones. And after that two more albums (all
three for Sub Rosa). Then it was quiet, and Lilith sort of slipped from my
mind. Until I receive this new CD (I guess their fourth) and even more to
my surprise this was recorded at live shows, and they (hailing from
Chicago) even played late 1997 in Europe. I had to hark back and try and
remember what they were all about. I vaguely remember something about
Occult usage of images (Crowly...) and much sampling. The occult thing is
not very present on this CD, the sampling is a steay feature. Apperently
they use light controlled synths. The five live shows (partly?) captured
here are full of collage like elements with tons of small events happening
all over the place. At the times it reminded me of the digital sound
processing normally heard on Mego records. The dark and occult elements are
not present in the music anymore (maybe in the bands visual presentation?).
The result is a captivating, one hour sound journey. (FdW)
Address: <info@world-dom.com>

ROEL MEELKOP - 7(perceptions) CD by Staalplaat
As the title indicates there are seven tracks on this brilliant new CD by
Roel Meelkop, who is also known for his works in the groups THU20, Kappotte
Muziek and Goem. The CD starts of with some very low frequencies, wich tend
to appear more often, structured in to a very nicely designed soundscape.
Moving into some wich seem to be cymbals followed by "quiet" noise.
Crackling and soft pulses can be heard later on and droning curves aswell,
creating both tension and the opposite. The appearing and disappearing of
sound is fantastic over the whole CD. Somehow this CD reminds me quite a
lot of weather and sea sounds, though I gather the original sounds are
mostly generated then computer manipulated. It shows how good Roel Meelkop
has developed his personal style to make these unnatural sources sound
extremely beautiful. Nurse With Wound and Mika Vainio are two names that
pop up in my mind about some parts of this CD, the nicely streched sounds
and how frequencies are put brilliantly together.The volume over almost the
whole CD is low, and I could not imagine it better otherwise. This is one
of the best CD's I have heard lately and I recommend it strongly! The easy
listening of the future...!(HB)
Address: <mailorder@staalplaat.com>

YVES DAOUST - MUSIQUES NAIVES (CD by EMPREINTES DIGITALES)
Well, appy polly logies firstly for misspelling this label name last week.
It is '... DigitalEs' with an 'e' before the 's' and not an 'i'. Guess I
was subconciously thinking about soporific vegetables one mo' 'gain !
Yves Daoust released the CD 'Anecdotes' on this same label several years
ago, and now there's this, in the nifty (trademark ?) cardboard packaging
which I have come to associate with excellent electroacoustic music.
(Before I get to the aural content, full marks for the absolutely gorgeous
photo-collage on the cover.)
The CD opens with 'Impromptu' - the most recent piece on this collection -
in which Yves dissected Chopin's 'Fantasie-Impromptu in C sharp minor, Op
66', by recording it note-by-note and treating it inside a computer. It
starts with a nervous, tentative piano chord, which unexpectedly
fluctuates drastically in pitch setting the tone for the rest of this
excellent composition. It slowly builds into a seething deluge of notes,
attack is forcibly seperated from release and the threatening distortion is
cooled towards the end by by a slight shower. It made me think of the
composition 'Return' by our chum Morton Subotnick (thanks for the responses
to last week's review, all of you who did), which was executed on
reasonably horrid Yamaha synthesisers by Yamaha sequencers and was 'a
distillation of the piano works of Scarlatti' (or something like that),
according to Morton himself. 'Return, by the way, was composed as a
celebration of the Halley's Comet periodic flyby a couple of years ago.
Next on 'Musiques Naives'is a piece titled 'Il Etait Une Fois...(Conte Sans
Paroles)'' which is a soundtrack to a dream, lingering 'somewhere between
the narrative and the musical' with sounds that caress, floating like
weightless feathers and others that leap out in joyful surprise. No danger
here. This is followed by 'Mi bemol', a three minute piece composed for the
first Empreintes Digitales compilation 'Electro Clips', which was also my
introduction to this label - an absolutely brilliant CD, which was follwed
by a similar compilation in 1998 'Miniatures Concretes'- a celebration of
50 years since Musique Concretes's 'invention', which I own but have not
fallen so rapidly under the spell of.
The fourth track 'Rsonances' was constructed from church bell sounds. Again
the individual sounds are split into tinier and tinier fragments creating
shimmering cascades of bells which gradually smear back into their original
shape and pitch, now tight, then loose. Sustain is stretched - faint
reflections and scattered points of sound bounce off drifting clouds of
dust motes in ancient buildings.
'Water Music' was inspired. like so many pieces, electroacoustic and
otherwise, by the element water. (Check out Annette Van Der Gorme's release
'Tao' on this same label for a superb piece around this theme.) Perhaps
it's because the rich palette of frequencies and moods inherent in water
can evoke and inspire any emotion, feeling or memory.
The final track 'Fantasie' was constructed from radio archives and was
commissioned to commemorate the 50th anniversary of French production on
the state radio network.
Once again, E.D. have produced a musical gem, no easy listening or
background sounds here, but a demanding and rewarding journey through the
topography of Yves Daoust's imagination. Sublime !

Oh Yes ! I nearly forgot to mention Robert Normandeau's definitive CD
'Lieux Inouis', which is perhaps my favourite CD on this label, can I have
a copy please, sir. His other full-length CD on Empreintes Digitales
'Tangram' was made available as a double CD of the same track, the second
CD was recorded from a multiple speaker performance master (if I remember
correctly ?) and was also a gem. (MP)

GOEM - REDUKTIE (CD by OBLIQUE SOUNDSCAPES, A DIUISION OF NOISE MUSEUM)
Here's yet another CD by the intrepid Dutch trio, who work under a variety
of different names and produce a wide range of different musics. This new
release by the Goem-boys on Noise Museum contains 8 tracks. It's rather
eccentric - stumbling rhythms slowly creep out from under ghostly swirls,
respirating synthesisers open their mouths while tap-dancing castanet
players seek syncopation, their hearts stuttering. Sounds clatter, whirl
like wind and slough layers to reveal a relentless pulse. There's
scritchy-scratch like carpenter's nails nagging scalps. Low-flying
helicopters spray, then go away.
As usual, attention has been paid to time and space, although I think it
lacks a lot in it's composition. Despite it's weirdness, it remains
somewhat predictable. Perhaps it's the intention, 'cause these are smart
blokes with six good ears. (MP)