Monday, June 1, 2020
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Artist: Bionulor (@)
Title: Erik
Format: CD
Label: Requiem (@)
Rated: *****
I've already listened to several interpretations and reworks of Gymnopedies by legendary and mysterious composer Erik Satie, whose most notorious composition has been regarded as the most remarkable precursor of the so-called ambient music due to the ambiguity coming from the melodic structure, based on the astonishing reversed complementarity between harmony and calculated dissonances, but it's quite rare a derivative release managed to mirror the emotional contrails which could be triggered by its listening. Czestochowa-based composer Sebastian Banaszczyk aka Bionulor seems to be so intimate with that forerunning oeuvre that he decided to entitle this collection of sonic eclairs by borrowing the name of the French pianist and composer, just as if he were one of his closest friend. Bionulor applied that processing method he called "100% sound recycling" he already successfully tested in his previous two albums - whereas his self-titled debut focused on previously recorded music of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, he mainly molded human voice on its second album "Sacred Mushroom Chant" - to Gymnopedies by juxtaposing a wide range of filters and settings: the notorious alternation of the subdominant G and the tonic D tones of the first of the three piano compositions often recurs over the album, but it got dipped into many sonic solutions. For instance on the initial "ST.001", it seems evoked by a mnemonic glimpse due to the loop of a vinyl crackle, which sounds emphasized on the following ST.002 together with the dirty sound of torn speakers or of a rusty grammophone, before feeding the sparking of the hypnotic ticking pulses on "ST.003". Sometimes slices of the score looks like turning into a sort of coding for otherwise unintelligible dimension or weird entities: "ST.008" sounds like the accompaniment to the graceful movements of a ghost, while "ST.007" and "ST.004" could respectively be peddled as the extracts from an imaginative edition for goblins and spaceships;"ST.009" or "ST.013" could be the way Gymnopedies could be "remixed" by the consciousness of some assistant of Dr.Lily after the first trial of some isolation tank, the reversed play on swarming chirps and puffing sonic sutures on "ST.010" could let some listener surmise it came from some old tape, which Bionulor found in Silesian forests. Those tracks where it seems Gymnopedies arise like glares, lightning bugs or will-o'-the-wispsin the night are pure nostrum for imagination, while the final "ST.015" could sound like a possible Gymnopedie-inspired reverie by Nobukazu Takemura. "Erik" has been wisely mastered by Taylor Deupree.