Music Reviews



Centrozoon: The Cult of: Bibbiboo

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Mar 24 2003
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Artist: Centrozoon (@)
Title: The Cult of: Bibbiboo
Format: CD
Label: Burning Shed (@)
Distributor: CD Street
First heard about Germany's Centrozoon in conjunction with one of their member's side project called Show of Exaggeration (cmp review on Chain D.L.K.). Centrozoon is a trio including singer Tim Bowness, painter/designer/musician Bernhard Wöstheinrich (synthesist and percussionist) and Markus Reuter (touch style guitarist). I don't know what Tim Bowness role is since I haven't heard one single word really (I do know that this CD, which is a real CD, not a CDR, was released under his own CDR label Burning Shed in the UK) but the work of the other two consists of intricate sonic textures of noises, free no-wave guitar improv and layers of synth-pads chords. As you can imagine the result is extremely unconventional and especially far away from what you might expect from traditional guitar sounds records. Discipline, research, experimenting and processing affect Reuter's guitar playing so deeply and radically that it's more like another keyboard that interacts with Wöstheinrich's generated sounds and manipulated waveforms. Ambient soundscapes performed with the ease, passion and fragility of real time experimental noise tweakers and intertwining lines of harmony and freeform fusion performed with the elegance, purity and casualty of a long forgotten jazz art that transpires from underneath the lid of vaporous electronics and artificial density. Only occasionally they resort to broken and slightly dirty beats. If you absolutely must have comparisons then I would say a mix of Torn, Fripp, Frohmader, Stockhausen, Roedelius, Hedges, Sverisson and Obmana should give you a pretty good idea.
The production process of "The Cult of: Bubbiboo" followed a pioneering and quite interesting route, involving Canadian guitar player Derek DiFilippo and group of people whose interactions and reactions were recorded in a specially created webforum. This is their third album as Centrozoon (a new album called "The Scent of Crash and Burn" has just been released too) and comes in a nice digipack with drawings and notes by King Crimson biographer Sid Smith. The beautiful blue-ish cover art work is of course by Wöstheinrich (also reflecting his composing work).

KEY_ON: My body is a body

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Mar 22 2003
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Artist: KEY_ON (@)
Title: My body is a body
Format: 3" MiniCD
Label: Anaemic Waves Factory (@)
Incredibly good stuff released by AWF in the Minium series, which means 3" format and less than 50 copies around, which (in this case) is a shame - I do hope it gets reprinted sooner or later. Key_On is a multimedia collective formed by Piero Fragola (music, sound editing, computer graphics), Alice Ferrante (voice, translation) and Luana Visciglia (lyrics, photographs, voice on last track). I only know Fragola is also active as a noisician with the power-electronics project POSK (read the review of their recent split with Murder Corporation). But this ep is really brilliant and diverse. Imagine a tapestry of digital bleeps and frequencies, something between glitch electronics and ambient, and spoken female vocals reciting some hallucinated lyrics about bodies - which is also the theme of the haunting pictures in the multimedia part, with Flash animations adding a proper visual dimention to words and sounds. Believe me, it's actually much more rewarding to experience the whole thing than to sit here trying to describe it. A demanding conceptual work extremely accomplished in the final result, which shows a lot of talent and ideas. Fascinating... I truly hope the collective will release something more anytime soon.

AIDAN BAKER: I fall into you

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Mar 22 2003
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Artist: AIDAN BAKER
Title: I fall into you
Format: CD
Label: Public Eyesore (@)
Also active as a writer and member of the experimental collective ARC, Aidan Baker (guitars, bass, tape loops, vocals, artwork) has written a fascinating work skillfully blending words with music, transforming discourse into music and exploring the suggestive telling quality of sounds. "I fall into you / and replicate" seems to be the conceptual pivot of a work permeated by love, desire and the pains and pleasures of transformation. Aided by Naomi Okabe (vocals) and Lisa Rossiter-Thorton (string loops), Baker has orchestrated a theory of hypnotizing loops, sampled percussive patterns, manipulated string sounds and spoken passages slowly evolving in a kind of half-voiced chanting, passing from more turbulent atmospheres to a maximum of peacefullness in the last track, adequately titled "Lethe", where everything caves in and returns to silence.

Ernesto Diaz-Infante: s/t

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Mar 20 2003
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Artist: Ernesto Diaz-Infante (@)
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Pax recordings (@)
Distributor: Verge Music
I usually don't like to copy the description given by the artist/label/promoter, but in this case it's almost a must, not only because it is a correct and fair as opposed to an artsy-fartsy, exaggerated and hyped description, but also because the description is at least as creative as the music itself: «experimental, lowercase improv, noise, electronic, out-rock, 21st century compositions, sonic art, found sounds, gritty-clicky scratches, tense filmic passages, unnerving silence, avant folk-like outsider songs, audio errata»! ;-) Ernesto Diaz-Infante, California-born San Fran resident and very active in the local as well as the international experimental music scene (awarded residencies at Nice's, France, Centre International de Recherche Musicale and Villa Arson and at the Millay Colony for Arts, Centrum, Villa Montalvo, the New York Mills Arts Retreat, the Ucross Foundation and the Dorland Mountain Arts Colony) is one of those trained experimenting and challenging music freaks/scientists with cultural and academic background including degrees at the Santa Barbara University College of Creative Studies and the Institute of the Arts. Reading all of this on his bio, came as no surprise to me after listening to his record for a couple of times. The music he proposes is fragmented and radical but is wrapped by a certain intellectual veil. Over 15 CDs populate his discography, sporting various collaborations and contributions, but this self-titled CD is his 5th solo work and I read that it is his most diverse yet. Inspired by, presumingly, the musique concrete school as well as by the uncompromising Mittle-European experimental scene of labels such as Staalplaat and by the noise-collage movement that has been steadily growing in North-America and Canada, Ernesto Diaz-Infante picks his brains to shape the record in a uniquely eclectic way. His instrumentation includes an array of found sounds, field recordings, string instruments, percussive instruments, electronic and electric instruments and, as outcast as it may seem, a quite heavy use of vocals. If experimental music isn't your cup of tea stay away from this 'cause you might get bored or nervous easily but if you don't mind to be challenged and if you can take the heat dive into a world of new sonic concepts and gentle cross-breeding audio mutations. Just be open-minded when you do.

KOJI ASANO: Suite for Organ and Recorders No.1

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Mar 15 2003
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Artist: KOJI ASANO (@)
Title: Suite for Organ and Recorders No.1
Format: CD
Label: Solstice
Each time it's a surprise to guess what you can find into a Koji Asano's full lenght and this time he surprised me a lot. He forgot for a moment the sounds treatment based on hisses and noises and brought us a long suite for organ and recorders(soprano, alto, tenor and base recorder). The suite is divided in ten different parts and was recorded at the Church in Amsterdam on summer 2002. It is based on parts played unically by blow instruments and looking at the way it's structured it seems to be the representation of a living body. You can hear it moving. It's seems to hear it running, then stopping to take breath and then agonizing. You wait for its final breath that seems it's never coming. This is in my humble opinion the most successful work recorded by Asano. I've got also to mention that on this work he had Auymi Matsuda (recorders) and Isao Otake (organ) as guest musicians.


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