Friday, January 01, 2010

Tim Barnes/Jeph Jerman - Live + Gallery Denver June 10, 2005 (CDR)

Hard to go wrong with this pair. The gentlest, least assuming kind of improvisation, presumably using all kinds of natural objects from leaves to pieces of wood and rock, to pine cones and some metal as well, allowing ample space for the room. Even when the volume increases for a short span, it's like a dust devil crossing a field, a momentary disturbance that leaves some eddies in it wake. A fine recording.

Jeph Jerman - Datura (CDR)

There's another recording by Jerman, I think, where he uses only cactus needles as a sound source (?). I'm not sure if the same goes for the datura, a spiny plant that also goes by the name, thorn apple (contact mic, mini-disc, 4-track and laptop are credited) or if, perhaps, the title simply refers to the widely known hallucinatory properties of said plant. In any case, it's a beautiful recording, placing one in a kind of hyper-amplified desert nightscape. the loose repetitions of the fluttery croaking of desert frogs, shuffling steps in the sand, birds, distant highways and planes--it's just a wonderful, immersive set of sounds.

Jeph Jerman - The Angle of Repose (CDR)

Created with all manner of stuff, from eggs in bowls to laptop, the overriding sensation of the first track is, at first, of shimmering metal, softly struck an upwelling. Some 13 minutes in, it shifts to a gentle electronic ripple, perhaps sourced from bowed or rubbed metal, very much summoning an image of the surface of a sun-struck pond. This soon morphs into a "duet" between that sound and a rolling, light percussive one, perhaps those eggs. Very lovely, more so as bell-like tones emerge. The second, shorter piece is a bit slighter, a pleasant, echoing series of quiet, percussive bangs and clinks.

In all, three more very worthwhile additions to the extraordinarily strong Jerman catalog.

Michael Graeve/Toshiya Tsunoda - s/t (edition t.)

Sourced from Graeves' banks of multiple ancient turntables (sans records--an impressive display if you ever get a chance to see it) and hydrophonic recordings by Tsunoda, interspersed with low frequency tones that "deceed" audibility, then sliced and diced via some arcane formula. Interestingly, the cessation of sound often occurs mid-track, making the disc best appreciated as a whole. That said, there's a disconnected quality, almost a randomness, between sequences here (and, as best as I can determine, some sections repeat with, if any, minimal enhancement). Some are more clearly turntable based, others water, some in between. It's a little discombobulating listening to on a home stereo, doubtless more involving in situ as an installation. Disorienting, but I enjoyed it.

tsunoda's blog

All of the above carried by erstdist

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