SPUNK & JOËLLE LÉANDRE: Live in Molde CD +3dB

spunkjoelle

SPUNK & JOËLLE LÉANDRE: Live in Molde CD +3dB

The rather unfortunately titled Spunk, team up here with a long time inspiration for their work with revered double bass player Joëlle Léandre; and without doubt, it is an altogether peculiar affair, which unsurprisingly has its fair share of improvisation.

The skittering vocals are spliced together in a fashion not too dissimilar to the madness of Diamanda Galas, but relying on effects as opposed to natural talent in order to create the chaos. In the background a cello plays haphazardly whilst intermittent instrumentation of other sources are occasionally tampered with and pushed from pillar to post, with strings plucked and bows swung in what it seems, all directions.

‘Live in Molde’ touches on a few genres, yet defies them all. As with most albums of this ilk, this meanders too much in its own self-importance; and would work best for those that view it as an installation, I guess.

Beautifully packaged in a heavyweight, foil-embossed digipak, this did scream quality the moment I picked it up; however, as a listening experience this did little for me in my home environment. This would most likely make more sense if I grew a goatee, acquired a sudden penchant for turtlenecks and corduroy pants; then chose to venture on a long expedition up my own backside.

5/10

Advertisements

NATASHA BARRETT: Peat + Polymer 2xCD +3dB

natashabarrett

NATASHA BARRETT: Peat + Polymer 2xCD +3dB

Barrett is Norway’s most prominent composer of electro-acoustic music, if the press bumpf is anything to be believed. She has been awarded numerous accolades amongst the way in a variety of countries; and here provides a bumper pack of sounds that thematically draw on synthetic and organic sounds.

Disc one (titled ‘Peat’), focuses on a variety of natural audio, blended in with an array of ambient backdrops and the odd array of Jazz instrumentation. It is invariably a mixed bag that had the ability to engage and infuriate in equal measure. Occasionally, sporadic bursts of Dark Ambient creep through on a number of tracks; and it’s these interludes that stood out the most (albeit because they tick my personal preferences).

‘Oslo Sound Station’ opens up disc two (titled ‘Polymer’), picking up with rich sombre pads that immediately drew my attention. Alas, this was the only positive response I had to the entirety of this second disc, that clocks in over an hour, with the majority of tracks devoted to what I class as the ultimate time wasting hobby; Field Recordings.

Field Recordings are the audio equivalent of a photo album that no one else frankly gives a toss about. You know the scene, when family and friends make you endure near identical pictures of themselves sat round the pool in Spain, or eating an ice-cream at the beach, whilst they give you an inane running commentary of their holidays.

Don’t get me wrong; there are artists out there who are complete geniuses at sculpting the medium into actual musicianship. But these guys are few and far between; and I simply get nothing out of listening to a squabbling array of bustling ethnic markets and footsteps on Peruvian pathways. It’s as pointless as it is boring.

6/10

ØYVIND SKARBØ: Die, Allround Handwerker CDr +3dB

ØYVIND SKARBØ: Die, Allround Handwerker CDr +3dB

Behold the most pointless release I have heard all year long. Considering the background of this ‘artist’ hailing as a professional live drummer, it’s quite the surprise to hear a complete lack of any percussion on this release whatsoever.

‘Die, Allround Handwerker’, spans eight tracks of just over 32 minutes, comprising of nothing but field recordings from what appears to be a tape recorder running in the background, whilst he messes around in his garden shed or something. Well, that’s at least what it appears to be.

This is one of the most futile exercises in audio I have ever had land on my doorstep, or had the misfortune to listen to; the mind boggles.

1/10