The sounds on the recently released collaboration between Aidan Baker & A-Sun Amissa were recorded in Denmark and France in the winter of 2012. The limited edition cassette release (by Germany's Midira Records) of these sessions highlights an intriguing side of Aidan Baker's ever-expanding sonic pallet.
The first track, 17.02.2012 DE, begins with ethereal ambiance of an ECM release, featuring quiet cymbal swells, and droning violin. The piece seems poised for release but dies away as the drums recede amidst a sea of peaceful atmosphere. Then it slowly and subtle revives into a subdued groove, supported by a monotone cello-like grind ' although there is no cello on the release so the sound is likely made by one of the three guitars ' and slowly escalating tom-tom pattern.
The second track, 25.02.2012 FR, is again subdued but somewhat more forceful, like the ambient movement of a post-rock suite. Again, a cello grinds out an eerie drone as viola lines sway in and out of the mix. Midway through the piece, a distorted tape loop enters before Baker takes centre stage with well-crafted guitar noise that wafts in and out of the mix.
The soundscapes conjured by Baker and the A-Sun Amissa group hint that since relocating to Europe, Baker has expanded his range to absorb the continental avant-garde, while maintaining the uncompromising spirit of his heavier work with Nadja.