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Vital Weekly 676

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RÉGIS BOULARD & CHIEN VERT - LES TOURISTES (CD by !EDITIONS)
On "Les Touristes" Boulard presents his new group after working with Streamer. Chien Vert is a french trio of Stéphane Fromentin on guitars and voice, Nicolas Méheust on mellotron, rhodes, mini moog and bass, plus Régis Boulard himself playing drums, voice and Rhodes. Rock in a postrock vein if I have to typify the music in one sentence. Easy going minimalistic rockmusic, mainly instrumental, and focused on creating a certain atmospheres. In their sound the old keyboards they use attract most of the attention. The piece "Chien Vert" for example is dominated by mellotron, evoking old progrock days. In "Omaha-les-Bains" they show their jazzy face with even in a even more easy going pace, although the drummer is very busy in this piece. In "Click Men - Yes Men" they show again another face with a delicious freerock improvisation. In "Swing is White" they create a very weird and spooky world. "Visitez Alcatraz" is an uptempo exercise with strange keyboards. With their musical possibilities they do a good job, developing a non-spectacular music that works under the surface. Concerning their musical identity however they are more into searching and seeking, then into finding. (Dolf Mulder) Address: http://www.myspace.com/chienvert

KASHIWA DAISUKE - 5 DEC. (CD by Noble Records)
Kashiwa Daisuke is a highly respected Japanese artist who originally was introduced in a radio program by legendary Ryuichi Sakamoto presenting talents of electronic music. Since then the artist contributed with works to commercials and TV programs. That the artist has an interest in progressive rock comes clear, not so much in the musical expression but more in her ability surprise the listener with the completely unexpected. The main ingredient on this third album is the beautiful piano works adding an excellent nocturnal atmosphere to the album along the electronic soundscapes lying beneath. But as the listener drift into tranquility the next in line is over-the-top harsh moments of cut-up electronics, furious breakbeats and drones of noise. The album knocks down any conventional approach to musical genres and in this unpredictable nature, Kashiwa Daisuke has composed an impressive work of multistylish expressions. Highly recommended! (Niels Mark) Address: http://www.noble-label.net/

PROJEKT TRANSMIT - PROJEKT TRANSMIT (CD by Staubgold)
For Tony Buck it was time for something completely different. You probably know him from the ambient-minimalist jazz trio The Necks, or the noise band Peril and improv outfit Kletka Red. So he proved himself already as a multisided artist. But with this project he shows again another facet of his musical preferences. He choses now for very straight forward rock, doing it almost all on his own. He wrote and produced this project. Except for one song, 'Masters of War', written by Bob Dylan. Buck plays drums and guitar and sings. Helped out only by Dave Symes on bass. Together they sound as a real band who deliver their music with conviction. Most tracks rest on a minimalist base of propulsive beats or riffs. Over layers of a thick noise Buck weaves with voice and guitar simple melodic lines, creating a harmonious and hypnotizing ensemble. His singing is mixed direction background which was a good decision. With this album of agitated rock Buck makes his point very manifestly. A fantastic outburst of rock energy (Dolf Mulder).
Address: http://www.staubgold.com/

JOHN WIESE - CIRCLE SNARE (CD by No Fun Productions)
John Wiese working within the genre of noise as an "experimentalist" forgive the title, is significant in that his work using microphone and electronics appears to be a coherent development which is rather surprising given the general un-hegemony. Certainly anyone who is following his career or has any interest in this genre will need to consider this as it offers something not so much as a departure or resolution but certainly a development. Each piece - of the 4 tracks builds from minimal staccato noise into a rich field of electronics and microphone manipulations. Though (there is I'm afraid a 'though') I have great respect for this and other of his work, moreover I'm reminded of the mix of wit and seriousness of Bruce Nauman - a significant conceptual artist who perhaps because of his wit rather than seriousness has become something of a 'hero' to the following generation of artists. Is the very fine work of Wiese the beginning of a new dawn or a glorious sunset (to steal a Wagnerian metaphor) . What I'm attempting to say is how modern and so somehow non-contemporaneous this all seems which offers the following idea. From one (my) perspective this is hauntological in appearance though in no way as kitsch retrofuturism or in any sense of the cyber-punk musicological use of the term- but Wiese might be part of the predicted re-orientation to the past rather than a naive attempt at transcendence, though the "spectre" of transcendence remains. (jliat) Address: http://www.nofunproductions.com/

EGK - ELECTRICALS (CD by Another Timbre)
OCTANTE - LUNULA (CD by Another Timbre)
Kyle Bruckmann (oboe, english horn & analogue electronics) and Ernst Karel (trumpet & analogue electronics) hail from Chicago, operate as EGK and have had a few releases before, which I thought were pretty good. Their music doesn't seem to deal that much with the instruments they play, which are most of the time not to be recognized at all, although on the other hand it hasn't entirely disappeared either. Sometimes we hear the wind instruments, but throughout mostly this music deals with the electronic processing thereof. Perhaps that's why I like it so much. EGK feed the sounds through their analogue electronics, making it sound entirely different of course, but it keeps that improvised music feel, with sudden moves and swift changes, or in 'Interval' a mean drone like sound. That combination of analogue and electronic improvisation leads to mighty fine results here again. I must say that I didn't hear much new under their sun either, but I guess this is the third or fourth CD I heard by them in maybe twice as many years, so there is no overproduction there.
More traditionally improvised music can be found by Octante, which is a quartet (oddly enough not a five piece) of Ruth Barberan (trumpet, speaker and microphones), Alfredo Costa Monteiro (accordion and objects), Ferran Fages (oscillators and pick ups), Margarida Garcia (electric double bass). Their music has also electric and electronic elements thrown in to the proceedings, but then throughout it deals mostly with acoustic sounds of a more quieter nature. This is the kind of improvised music that requires more concentration than the one from EGK - although some people may differ with me about that. But I thought that almost an hour of this kind of music is too much of a long stretch for me. Two times thirty minutes is just a bit too much I thought. Otherwise it was quite nice. (FdW) Address: http://www.anothertimbre.com

Z'EV & BRYAN LEWIS SAUNDERS - DAKU (CD by Outfall Channel)
WASTELAND JAZZ UNIT - ABSENCE PACT (CDR by Outfall Channel)
Its good to see a good release on CDR being released on CD, and this time with an even nicer cover (not that the original on Stand Up Tragedy Records wasn't bad, but this just nicer, silkscreened). In Vital Weekly 646 I wrote: "Certainly one of the stranger releases I recently reviewed was Bryan Lewis Saunders' 'N1-N4 Variations', of him talking in his sleep. Here he has another set of spoken word - four stories and an introduction of the word 'Daku'. It can be love, time, god or anything. Its meaning is its use, Saunders says. Saunders recites his texts, or rather tells his stories and Z'EV uses his voice to create the music. Z'EV's recent outings in electronic music, say 'Forwaard' and 'Outwaard', where he processes environmental sounds and which are far away from his usual percussion based work (although nothing new for him, as Z'EV also created text sound pieces in the earlier days of his career). Even when following the text is something that I don't always do, concentrating more on the texture of the voice in combination with the music, this is a great story telling release. Saunders has a great voice, telling stories about being sick and pain that grabs the listener, while Z'EV provides a fine soundtrack to it. The voices are transformed into animalistic cries and whispers, adding scary elements to the music. I'm not entirely sure if it is meant as such but there is an uneasy, horror like element that is part of this music. Excellent radioplay stuff." And that's where I still stand.
Wasteland Jazz Unit is a first time around, at least in these pages. They act as the heirs to the Borbetomagus sound. One Jon Lorenz on saxophones and one John Rich on clarinets and what the liner notes don't tell you is the extensive use of feedback that howls and screams about here. Its only twenty-five something minutes long, but what a fury it is. Normally noise as heavy as this is not my thing that much, but I have good memories of the various Borbetomagus concerts I saw and this brings that back. Improvised music with that strong noise rock edge to it. (FdW) Address: http://www.outfallchannel.com

ROBERT VAN HEUMEN & JOHN FERGUSON - WHISTLE PIG SALOON (CD by Creative Sources Recordings)
The idea of repetition in the film Ground Hog Day (aka whistle pig day) is that the past as the future can be re inscribed with novelty, and appears in a more opaque form in the writings of Deleuze and Guattari - an opacity in part given by a certain reading of Nietzsche which carefully removes - "of the self same" - which is cool - as it arises out of a long line of (lit) critters, I.A. Richards, William Empson, William K. Wimsatt, Monroe Beardsley, F.R. Leavis as well as Roland Barthes, Jacques Derrida, Paul de Man, Geoffrey Hartman et al. so allowing the "re-appropriating a previous moment." It opens up I suppose a conscious re-evaluation - re-working of difference - to and with the pioneers of modernity such as Cage and Tudor. And so techniques become -re-new-ed. However one criticism needs to be addressed which is scientism - these works were produced in a culture *lab* - how immune from the Sokal affair? - but for myself at this moment more importantly the serious reality of Nietzsche's eternal return of the same as a not knowing identical experience, "this spider.. moonlight...", "the most scientific" not literary idea, a la Markov. "John configures the electric guitar as a site for multiple simultaneous points of interaction and queries the iconic cultural status of his instrument via feet, fingers and feedback. Robert crunches, growls and smashes both John`s live sampled sound as well as his private stack of industrial bits and organic beats." Either there is nothing new - or there is endless novelty - "two cultures"? (jliat)
Address http://hardhatarea.com/WPS/

OO-RAY - MAGNIFICATIONS (CDR by Luv Sound)
Ted Laderas is the man behind OO-Ray. Laderas has been with an electro-band Ainu, which I believe I don't know, nor what he did there. However three years ago he started to learn to play the cello and as OO-Ray he plays solely cello music, which however never seems to sound like a cello. He loops the sounds around, feeds them through a bunch of electronic sound processors and in the end we have this swirling mass of sound. You could all too easily think this is a bunch of analogue synthesizers at work, buzzing away at work for a new album for Hypnos, but apparently its not. All cello and loops devices. The only tracks were this is clearer is at the four live pieces at the end of the release, when there is indeed the cello. In the eight studio pieces this is not the case. Here the deep end ambient structures are the main thing. As such nothing new under new under the sun - think for instance Vidna Obmana's various explorations in this direction - but Laderas plays things with great care and style. A fine work for late night listening. (FdW)
Address: http://www.luvsound.org

KNURL - A HAIL OF BLADES (CD by Impulsy Stetoskopu)
Everything about this release is extreme. Starting out with the esthetic aspect this latest CDR-release by Canadian concrete noise legend Knurl has been packed in-between two big metal plates connected with four bolts drilled through each corner of the plates. A highly impressive cover art on this one. Taking a look at the sonic containment of the release, Knurl a.k.a. Alan Bloor exclusively utilises circular saw blades to compose this piece of anti-music on the album known as "A hail of blades", an album that are divided into five intersections. Opening with a work of extremely harshness from beginning to end next in line starts slowly and peacefully moves like an ambient piece of found sounds in the first few minutes but as the eight minutes long track develops, drones of crushing noise slowly builds from deep levels of the sound picture taking more and more space until the track ends out in sonic chaos of ear-aching noise. The sounds of crushing electronics continues in the third intersection meanwhile the fourth chapter takes its approach in high frequency screeching noises. As the fifth and final piece arises the speakers are guaranteed to burn from the inside thanks to painfully extreme noise built on crushing power electronics. There are noise music and there are art of noise, as Italian futurist Luigi Russolo suggested a century ago. Alan Bloor once more reveals that his Knurl-project belongs to the latter category. An extreme yet seriously addictive work of crushing art. (Niels Mark) Address: http://www.myspace.com/impulsystetoskopu

TOY BIZARRE - KDI DCTB 216 (3"CDR by Ingeos)
Cedric Peyronnet, the man behind Toy Bizarre, starts an ambitious project of twelve 3"CDR releases, each with one piece of twelve minutes and all the data is based on "observations and data, reported by Jude Anderson, about square 1 m of the Atherton Gardens, City of Yarra (Melbourne, Australia)" and if I understood this right, the cover mentions the various sounds used, 'the laugh of school kids playing on the soccer field', 'tram rattles' and such like, but it also mentions 'heavy clouds, no wind', the temperature and such like. The musical component is a strong piece in the best Toy Bizarre tradition. Drone like, microsounding, but also full with sound, sustaining and ringing overtones and sound sources being obscured. Or perhaps its just the list mentioned on the cover, come to think of it, and perhaps even in a chronological order. Toy Bizarre has a strong voice of his own, setting him apart, I guess, from many of his French peers - the more serious blokes - but throughout the many years of him being active, an unique voice in the serious underground music. Not always mentioned, but certainly along the lines of Roel Meelkop, Marc Behrens and Richard Chartier. (FdW) Address: http://www.ingeos.org

BAS VAN HUIZEN - ONTGALMAN (MP3 by Monocromatica)
From literally almost around the corner - probably one of the few artists who drops his promo's unstamped through the HQ letterbox - comes a MP3 release by Bas van Huizen, who surprised us before with his computer based compositions in the field of musique concrete, but here he decided to create an entire album devoted to the guitar. He plays the six strings occasionally like a guitar, wailing about, with an e-bow. But by and large his interest goes out to play around with samples of the guitar, making it sound like anything but a guitar. I must admit that the parts in which the guitar doesn't sound like a guitar were my favorite and that parts which sounded like one, didn't do much for me. Too much like retro prog rock guitars for me. But as said in the other pieces Van Huizen creates a fine tapestry of sound. Here and there it reminded me of Asmus Tietchens, especially in the metallic rumble of the seventh piece. Throughout a fine work. (FdW)
Address: http://www.monocromatica.com

NIENTE RECORDS VOLUME 1 (MP3 by Niente Records)
Quite a bizar one, this compilation. I have no idea wether this is released as CDR or as a MP3, but I gather the last. It has lots of names I never heard of, like Vonneumann, Lendormin, Die Hoehe 19, Mongoholi Nasi, Nihil Is Me, but also some which I did hear before, such as St.ride, A Spirale, Harshcore, Bob Marsh. Musicwise this is also not easy to pin down to something, but if there is a common theme running through these seventeen pieces, I'd say its improvisation. This is not always in a traditional sense of the word, but can be electronic, noise based or otherwise, but not in a way that is more common in the Vital pages. This makes this compilation slightly chaotic, but full of energy. Not every track around here is great, but nothing takes up much space here either. What you don't like is over pretty quick, but then so is what you may like. A good place to learn some more furious improvised noise makers. (FdW) Address: http://www.myspace.com/nienterecords

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