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VITAL WEEKLY
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number 379
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week 28
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UNDERGROUND AUSTRALIAN (CDR by Audealism)
DANEGREUX VS. IVERSEN - RECONSTRUCTING MECHANICAL BACTERIA (CDR by Tib Prod)
ISZOLOSCOPE - AU SEUIL DU NÉANT (2 CD by Ant-Zen)
KLAPPER/ULHER/MORGENSTERN - MOMENTAUFNAHMEN (CD by Nurnichtnur)
ULHER/PHILLIPP/TURNER - UMLAUT (CD by Nurnichtnur)
EMBEDDED (2CDR compilation by Deterrent)
GOOD NIGHT - MUSIC TO SLEEP BY (2CD compilation by Tigerbaet 6)
CONRAD SCHNITZLER - GOLD (CD by Musical Tragedies)
DOC WOR MIRRAN - EDGES (CDR by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
DOC WOR MIRRAN - MOMENTUM 1 (CDR by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
JOSEPH B. RAIMOND - BANANA BOOBED (book by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
TOSHIYA TSUNODA - O RESPIRAR DE PAISAGEM (CD by Sirr.Ecords)
STEPHAN MATHIEU/JANEK SCHAEFER/RADBOUD MENS/TIMEBLIND - QUALITY HOTEL
(CD by Mutek)
HANS APPELQVIST - ATT MOTA VERKLIGHETEN (3" CD by Hapna)
JOEL STERN &ANTHONY GUERRA - STITCH (CD by Impermanent Recordings)

 

UNDERGROUND AUSTRALIAN (CDR by Audealism)
Under the nicely found name Audealism, a small label from Australia
operates. On their website you find many MP3s by their satble
artists, such as Dukes Of Acid, Alt SonyQ R & D, Dark Fader, DJ Dope
Incredible and Belo. The latter three are also on a CDR, which might
be for sale, but maybe just promotes the website. Dark Fader is
mainly interested in, as the name suggests, dark music. An ambient
mix of sparse percussion and electronics. A lenghty excursion going
on here, which works nice. The DJ with that silly name has two tracks
of also looseness of various rhythmical records (hip hop, spoken
word, techno), but somehow it gets nowhere. The Belo piece is maybe
the nicest: a far away rumble that slowly starts rotating, but the
rumbles never make a real groove. Instead they leave a spooky
atmosphere. The data portion of the CDR contains many MP3s by the
aforementioned artists, plus some only in that format. The SonyQ is
nice for those who like Autechtre like techno music. Certainly worth
checking out some of the stuff on the website. (FdW)
Address: http://www.audealism.com/

DANEGREUX VS. IVERSEN - RECONSTRUCTING MECHANICAL BACTERIA (CDR by Tib Prod)
Two band I haven't heard of before. I believe Jan Iversen is from
Norway and Guignol Dangereux from Italy. They remix eachothers work
here, but I do not know if they were remixes of finished pieces, or a
collaboration via mail, sending each other raw sound files to work.
What I gather from both their websites, is they like MP3s, so I won't
be too surprised to learn that they remixes raw sound files send
through the internet. The first seven pieces are by Iversen. His
pieces are best described as laptop music, but without falling in any
specific category. It's sometimes a bit ambient, sometimes more noisy
and drony, and sometimes even a bit rhythmical. Taking the best from
various directions, Iversen comes up with some pretty decent tracks.
Guignol Dangereux operate in maybe the similar territory, but in his
first two pieces more conventional music arise, in this case some
sort of analogue electro. However not the best around. The other
pieces are more in laptop doodlings area, but overall less refined,
more noisy than the stuff from Jan Iversen. Still quite alright
material, but nevertheless a little bit less in quality. Overall a
well done work, this collaboration. (FdW)
Address: http://www.tibprod.com

ISZOLOSCOPE - AU SEUIL DU NÉANT (2 CD by Ant-Zen)
Even though rhythmic noise as a genre has been on the stage for quite
a while, this latest release from Iszoloscope titled "Au seuil du
néant" separates from many other albums in that field. Iszoloscope
originally began its explorations back in 2000 thanks to its members
François Bénard & Yann Faussurier both from Canada. At that time the
collaboration project focused on a sort of dark ambient-industrial
with the release of debut album "Coaguilating wreckage" out on
Belgium label Spectre Records back in 2001. Since then Francois
Bénard have left the Iszoloscope ship and Yann Faussurier have
established contact with German Ant-Zen Recordings. With this first
album on Ant-Zen Iszoloscope have moved in the direction of rhythmic
noise with the focus on dark ambient-spheres. Using some quite harsh
and powerful rhythmic textures Yann Faussurier still leaves space to
some dark subtle drones of claustrophobic isolationism. The drones
give a great thrilling atmosphere as they slowly floats on the waves
of noisy rhythms. Second disc is an excellent remix-CD of earlier
Iszoloscope works from previous album "Le denominateur commun".
Despite the fact that many of the remixes have been developed from
the same source there is so much vitality and energy in each track.
Favourite track comes from Ah Cama Sotz with his heavy percussive
treatment of Skotophobique. This is definitely a fine album from
Iszoloscope! (NMP)
Address: http://www.ant-zen.com

KLAPPER/ULHER/MORGENSTERN - MOMENTAUFNAHMEN (CD by Nurnichtnur)
ULHER/PHILLIPP/TURNER - UMLAUT (CD by Nurnichtnur)
Two CDs of improvisations with one person appearing on both. Birgit
Ulher plays trumpet on both discs. I do know nothing about her, or on
the five other players on these CD's. The first one is a trio with
Martin Klapper on toys and electronics and Jurgen Morgenstern on
double bass and voice. In the twelve pieces they show an interest in
the use of small sounds. None of the instruments are really
conventionally played, but work as sound generators to make basically
any type of sound. Sometimes hoovering on the edges of silence,
sometimes they burst out in a highly vivid playing. Lots of small
events happening in almost each track. That's a wealth for the ear,
but at the same it requires a lot of effort to listen too (but that's
of course a good thing). Especially funny are the tracks in which
toys play a main role.
The other trio has a more conventional line up. Again Ulher's
trumpet, aswell as Ulrich Phillipp's double bass and Roger Turner on
drums and percussion. Here the improvisation is also a bit more
conventional. Displaying their improvisational virtuosity on their
instruments, they do it rather well. However of the two releases,
also the one, at least for me, that is lesser of interest. It's a bit
like seen and heard it before. The pieces are played well, but seem
to miss a bit of the attention and concentration which must be there
to make improvised music so interesting. Maybe the die-hards differ
with me. They should not hesitate to check both of these out. (FdW)
Address: http://www.nurnichtnur.de

EMBEDDED (2CDR compilation by Deterrent)
"The push against the limits of memory space, clock speed, restricted
functionality and purpose specific infrastructure", that's in a
nutshell what 'Embedded' is about. In the hard to read writing in the
booklet I figured something out about the use of sounds of video and
computer games, embedded systems (phones, aplliances) and circuit
bending. Maybe it's about all the things one shouldn't be doing with
all things electric, but which make a great sound once you do. This
double CD compilation has an 'active' and a 'passive' disc. The
'active' disc is about up tempo rhythm and noise music, the 'passive'
one is more in ambient areas. Most of the names to be found here, are
names I never heard of before. Bands like Der Einzige, Neutralizing
Force, Kwaiden, Skruntskrunt, Gentil Paysen (who has three tracks on
the 'passive' disc) but also Logoplasm, Andrea Marutti and Aal, who
all are connected to S'Agita Recordings label. The 'active' disc
works best if the rude techno elements are used. Music that deals
with elements from techno music, but which is recorded on lo-fi
equipment and not ment to dance too. The noisy bits here were not
well-spend on me. The drifts on the 'passive' disc are nice, but not
outstandigely well. Passtime music of an ok kind. Not really good,
not really bad. Overall a compilation that is nice. (FdW)
Address: http://www.deterrent.net

GOOD NIGHT - MUSIC TO SLEEP BY (2CD compilation by Tigerbaet 6)
Glitchmusic might have the name for being cold and distant. So a
thematic double CD with lullabys is of course something of a surprise
and certainly so on a label such as Tigerbeat6, not really always the
home for sweet music. But take for instance the three pieces here by
Stephan Mathieu, and you can't be wrong. 'A Drinking Song' has
nothing to do with sleeping, but the mild synthesizer tones and the
occassional glitch wave together perfect a perfect late night,
pre-sleep piece (despite the subtitle, I don't think you should be
playing music when sleeping). Three other highlights here are the
lenghty rumbles of Main, whose soundmaterial is so unrecognizable
that it doesn't matter - would it, when you are asleep anyway and the
lenghty piece by Oren Ambarchi. A study of one note guitar and
sustained sounds. Very trance and maybe also sleep inducing. The last
highlight are the warm crackles by Pimmon. All of these are great
pieces and worth alone getting this CD for. But there are some weaker
brothers too. One of the pieces I didn't like was 'Circumvent' by Kid
606, which is a rather hasty and chaotic piece of ambient sounding
electronics, but would nerve me, before going to sleep. Something
similar goes for the two pieces by Electric Company. The rhythm
elements brought in here are much sparser and more under control, but
still maybe not so the music to sleep by. Don't get me wrong: these
tracks are quite alright, I'm merely thinking why they are on this
compilation. This double set is one that is filled with overall nice
music, but of which only some will fit the thematic approach. (FdW)
Address: http://www.tigerbeat6.com

CONRAD SCHNITZLER - GOLD (CD by Musical Tragedies)
I like re-reading books on music. One of them is a book on Conrad
Schnitzler. It's weird to have such a book, since I don't think I
have that many records or CDs by the man. And those that I have
aren't really the big things in my collection (well, maybe with the
exception of 'Con Repetizione', which is a nice minimal piano CD).
But I find the man and his work fascinating. Working for so long,
outside the music industry, cut away from hypes, building a large
body of his own work. The so-called 'non-keyboard electronics' is one
of the phases I am always most keen on. Using synthesizers not as
common instruments, but rather the VCO, the LFO and the oscillators
to make music that is as yet unheard. From the period when he was
most active with this, the middle seventies, a whole series of
records was released, all dealing with colour, 'Rot', 'Blau' and
'Schwarz'. 'Gold' is now added, with recordings from the same period,
but being on a compact disc, it may be around for some longer (the
'colour' LPs from the seventies were released in small editions, and
are now much sought after). The fifteen tracks on this CD are a
wildly varied bunch. Some of them really fit the idea one may of
somebody randomly turning knobs, but for the most part it's a pretty
decent affair. Rhythmboxes play a big role here, and trigger the
wildest sounds inside the oscillators, with, as a prize winning track
'3' (herr Schnitzler never uses many titles): a pre-techno piece of a
4/4 rhythm, and space disco synths. Sometimes a genius is ahead of
it's time - or sometimes time will tell when a genius was at work.
(FdW)
Address: http://www.empty.de

DOC WOR MIRRAN - EDGES (CDR by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
DOC WOR MIRRAN - MOMENTUM 1 (CDR by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
JOSEPH B. RAIMOND - BANANA BOOBED (book by Mirran Thought/Empty Records)
Just like the elsewhere mentioned Conrad Schnitzler, I sometimes have
problems with the vast output of Doc Wor Mirran. Musically they have
been in so many places, that I think it's hard to find a die-hard fan
with the complete works at hand. Doc Wor Mirran's label is Empty
Records, which is likewise a hotchpotch of musical styles. But it's
also the home of Doc Wor Mirran, who started to release CDRs on their
own label, in the series 'Mirran Threat'. All of these releases are
handmade, and contain sometimes multi-media parts. These two releases
are by the hardcore duo of Doc Wor Mirran. 'Edges', recorded by
Jeandra Raimond and Joseph B. Raimond, was recorded in 1999 using one
Korg MS 20 synthesizer and has one short and one long track. It's
mostly a noise thing that is going on here, a bit like Merzbow (but
less layered) and a bit cosmic. White noise, white space and white
heat coming out of one of the more nicer synths in the world. A
pretty rough recording, but one that is well suitable for a small
scale release on a CDR.
I don't know who recorded 'Momentum 1' (the line up by Doc Wor Mirran
is an ever changing affair), but the music here goes into more
Schnitzler like areas. Processed chanting, synth notes and dark
synths create music that is quite dark, vaguely modern classical
(especially the first piece) and has an overall mystical,
atmospherical cloud to it. The CD is quite, short, only 10 minutes
for these tracks, but in the meantime you can watch all the paintings
on the CD extra part. Joseph B. Raimond is also a painter for
expressionistic paintings, in which men and animals play an important
role.
If this is not enough, there is also a poetry book by Raimond (which
makes you wonder: does this guy ever sleep? I am told he also has a
day-job). The dadaistic poetry is not well-spent on me, certainly not
too read. But to recite: that's another thing. I read parts out loud
for a not entirely objective four year old, and she enjoyed it and
started to interact with some language of her own. If you really
insist on understanding some of this poetry, I advise you to study
both english and german, because much of the language is what Raimond
picked up from the country he was born in and where he lives now.
(FdW)
Address: http://www.empty.de

TOSHIYA TSUNODA - O RESPIRAR DE PAISAGEM (CD by Sirr.Ecords)
If you have been a close reader of Vital Weekly, and I have no
reasons to believe otherwise, you heard the name Toshiya Tsunoda
before, and you are aware I like his music very very much. Tsunoda is
a sound artist of a most radical kind. Not in the sense that he
produces harsh edged music, but in his simplicity working with sound.
He takes a couple of microphones or contact microphones and tapes his
environment. His role as a composer is to select the right piece from
presumably a larger set of recordings. His recordings are detailed on
the cover. "A pair of microphones were set in the road between two
big warehouses. You can hear the mechanical sound of a cargo ship,
echoing regularly. There was a person practicing trumpet in the
distance" - is for instance a description of 'Road Between
Warehouses' (as you can see: no messing about with titles either). It
sounds like a drone captured outside, with distant motor hum, birds,
cars and indeed a distant trumpet. Fourteen of these beautiful
pieces, all in varying areas, both human made and natural, are
presented here. It sounds, if I read this back, like it's all so
simple, but it's not. Tsunoda captures the right space, the right
recording angle and knows exactely when a piece has the right length.
Not a dull moment in sight here. Next to Chris Watson's work, Tsunoda
belongs for me to the absolute top of sound environmentalists.
Another masterpiece! (FdW)
Address: http://www.sirr.ecords.com

STEPHAN MATHIEU/JANEK SCHAEFER/RADBOUD MENS/TIMEBLIND - QUALITY HOTEL
(CD by Mutek)
For many Mutek is Sonar's little sister in North America. Similar
music, but because of the smaller size, maybe a more friendly
approach. In 2001 Goem played there, and they took the chance to work
on their 'Abri' CD in their hotelroom. Other artists from the
festival shared rooms next to Goem, and dropped by to see what they
were doing. After some explaining, some of the artists used the Goem
set up to do their Goem (re-?) mixes. A CD was released later on,
'Gast' on the Mutek side label. This idea of using hotel rooms for
artists in transit was further explored in 2002, when Radboud Mens,
Stephan Mathieu, Janek Schaefer and Timeblind decided to do some
music together which is now released as 'Quality Hotel' (just like
'Abri' a name of a hotel in Montreal). It's a bit different then the
Goem CD, in that respect that 'Gast' still sounds like Goem, but in
the hands of others. 'Quality Hotel' is the result of editing the
finest moments from probably several hours of improvising music
together. It's hard to tell who did the final selection, but my guess
it's Stephan Mathieu having a big hand in this. I don't hear Radboud
Mens crazy minimal techno, Timeblind's hip hop inspired rhythms and
from Janek we hear his turntable, but it's very much incorporated in
the total. Leaves the warm crackles of Mr. Mathieu, still one of the
more refined musicians when it comes to warm glitches, and it seems
to me that he has a firm hand in editing this album. It's subdued
ambient like music, with occassional crackles and hiss, maybe even an
odd bang here and there (although rhythm is altogether not a theme
here). Held back and refined, warm and glitchy. There is a lot of
improvisation going on between people with laptops, but it not always
reaches great height. Here's one that matters. (FdW)
Address: http://www.mutek.ca

HANS APPELQVIST - ATT MOTA VERKLIGHETEN (3" CD by Hapna)
I am not sure if Hans Appelqvist released anything else between this
and the previously reviewed 'Tonefilm' (Vital Weekly 321), but it's a
take-off from that CD. This is more like a radioplay with voices in
Swedish, English, Chinese and German. Spoken word open up a piece,
then start to sign, accompanied by piano, mandolin and flute. Each of
the pieces, three in total, have female voices. It's hard to grasp
what these stories, if they are in fact stories in a traditional
sense at all, are about, certainly when it comes to languages I
haven't mastered in full, like Swedish or Chinese. So, it's hard to
judge this in terms of joyous or sadness, but it's indeed a very
personal thing, like coming into someone's living room and hearing
people speak and you don't understand a word what is said. There is
only one reference I can think of, and that is the work of Dominique
Petitgand. It has the same sort of private, intimate atmosphere but
in a very musical context. Compared to 'Tonefilm', about which I had
mixed feelings, this is a big big step forward. And damm, this is
another fine release on Hapna, a label that has been consistentely
bringing quality along - I don't think I discovered a bad release in
their catalogue so far. (FdW)
Address: http://www.hapna.com

JOEL STERN &ANTHONY GUERRA - STITCH (CD by Impermanent Recordings)
I believe Joel Stern and Anthony Guerra are originally from
Australia, but now living in London, so it may not be a total
surprise to see their first real CD (they had a couple of CDRs on
their own Twothousandand label before) on an Aussie label. They play
'electronics, field recordings, electric guitar', according to the
cover. The guitar is played in the best fashion of prepared guitar,
sometimes with an ebow, something by placing objects on the strings.
The sounds produced are fed through a bunch of electronics, maybe
even a computer and the field recordings are almost on a similar
level as the prepared guitar: cracking and buzzing. Waving these
three elements together it becomes a multi but closely layered field
of electronics, with occassional guitar sounds arising out of the
mass of swirling sounds. The best piece of the untitled lot is the
final, ninth, piece, which takes up almost a quarter of the entire
CD. Starting with picking strings, it slowly evolves in to laptop
processed guitar playing, almost like a sweet lullaby. It may be so
that much of this music is not exactely new or anything like that,
but it worked out really well. A strong and coherent work. (FdW)
Address: http://laudible.net/impermanent