Thursday, November 15, 2007















Unless pushed, I've pretty much given up reviewing Erstwhile releases for Bagatellen (or elsewhere) simply because conflict of interest accusations get too bothersome to deal with. But, on my own blog, what the hell and I haveta say, the Pita/Schmickler disc is really good.

This corner of eai, the dense, noisy, in-your-face one, isn't my favorite. I often find too much surface sheen and too little meat and I wasn't anticipating overly enjoying this release. But even though there's a good bit of out and out raucousness, the duo reins things in enough to sell it to me; I think all four sections are exciting, solid and repay repeated listening. I haven't noticed much talk about this one and there should be some. Check it out.

I believe Schmickler's playing in NYC in December, very much worth going to see.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

have you heard the schmickler/chisolm disk on hapna. do you like that one as well. how do the two compare

Brian Olewnick said...

Sorry, no. Haven't heard a hapna disc in awhile, in fact.

Jon said...

they don't compare at all except both are Marcus duo projects. the Hapna disc is Niblock-inspired drones (one of the two tracks is dedicated to him, and the other one could also easily be), the R/S is dense, rough electronics.

thanks for the kind words, Brian, glad (and a touch surprised) you're digging this one!

Richard Pinnell said...

I finally R/S out of the shrinkwrap tonight and gave it a play. I've been avoiding doing so until I read your thoughts Brian.

Yeah its got an awful lot more going for it than most music in the digital noise genre. I really liked the sounds and the interesting shapes that form in there, kind of cement-mixer music.
I could only play it at the very lowest of volumes though, mainly as its not practical to do otherwise here, but also as I have no doubt I prefer to listen to it this way.

Good stuff anyway, probably the best non-Rowe Erstwhle for quite some time.

David said...

First listen, this disc didn't do anything for me. It mostly fulfilled my suspicion that this isn't really my bag.

Second listen, a little better. The opening is nice, allowing you to settle in a bit, the intensity builds, there's more variation than I at first suspected.

Third listen, I'm back to somewhere between my first and second impressions. There's stuff going on here, but I don't know if listening more closely is increasing or decreasing my appreciation.

Oddly enough, parts of it remind me of a Sun Ra Mini Moog explosion from the 1970s. Maybe if they stopped the music at some point and chanted about the universe?

Anyway, I definitely would not rank this particularly high in the Erstwhile canon. There are a number of recent non-Rowe releases that I would take over this one. The first which comes to mind is aso.

Not that my opinion counts for much of anything; this isn't really an area of the scene that I like very much.