Music Reviews

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Artist: Igor
Title: Fast & Slow
Format: 12"
Label: Lamour (@)
Rated: *****
Many famous quotations by likewise famous people match art to pain or bad experiences and in the basis of such an assumption, I've heard many esthetes, who had no shames in exhibiting a certain sadism in refusing the labelling of art to anything which didn't got inspired by any kind of suffering. In spite of the beauty of his musical artifact, I wouldn't wish on Igor, the moniker of Swedish polyhedral musician Mikael Stromberg, to live the same experience that inspired this lovely release: even if he considers "Fast and Slow" as an important part of his healing process after having suffered from the sudden complete rupture of the aorta while he was cooking (the diagnosis says it was an acute aortic dissection), I really hope he's in good health in order to dedicate himself to his arts - he's also an artist in text-sound-picture context since the early 80ies -. I guess the title of this release could refer both to the irregular heartbeat during his convalescence and the distinguishing feature of each track, that he named after painkillers and other medicinal products, where the above-mentioned irregularity got reflected by sudden acceleration or decelerations, apopleptic strokes, muffled thuds and other sonic or compositional stains that seem to disturb already fragile balances.The references to some icons of 70ies ambient school as wel as proper classics such Brian Eno, John Cage and Erik Satie are guessed: the mysterious and somewhat melancholic nuance of Satie's composition could often comes to mind while listening to piano phrasing by Igor, who often transforms its sound by techniques for prepared piano, which are not so different from the ones by John Cage, or by celestial reverberations that recurs on very first ambient acts by Brian Eno, or itnegrate it with toy piano or brilliantly shaped electronic analog sounds. Even if the listening of this album could hit listener's heart, it has no side effects!



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