I have a track on a new compilation CD released by Paul Bradley/Edition Sonoro, the same label as myÂ Rudiment of Two CD from last year. The press release reads as follows…
‘resonant embers’ is a compilation CD featuring Paul Bradley, Maile Colbert, irr. app. (ext.), jgrzinich, Andrew Liles, Colin Potter and Ubeboet who have all previously been released through our parent label Twenty Hertz.
Here we have seven artists presenting seven tracks of drones both stoically austere and uplifting melodic, haunting melodies, beautifully evocative vocals, engaging field recordings and disorientating environments.
There are many things that link these artists together but it is their differences that are more interesting. There is a fundamental contrast in approach and execution with each channeling their creativity in differing ways from drones and soundscapes, through melodic instrumental pieces to environmental recordings and opera. The artists presented here have created individual works that display a unique voice and emotion, all the while creating a collectively involving work that is rewarded with repeated listens.
‘edition sonoro’ are very pleased and indeed darn right proud to be bringing these artists together on ‘resonant embers’ and hope that listeners will enjoy the unique and emotional journey they have created.
1. irr. app. (ext.) – Whickering mechanical parapropalaehoplophorus
2. jgrzinich – Animate structures No.1
3. Ubeboet – Agone
4. Colin Potter – Bella (direct current)
5. Paul Bradley – Kaleidoscope
6. Maile Colbert with Tellemake – Day of Anger act five; A fluid dawn
7. Andrew Liles – The relentlessly banal landscape
Resonant Embers compiles Paul Bradley and accomplices previously released through parent label, Twenty Hertz. Seven artists linked by a shared aesthetic (let’s call it “experimental”) with differing takes: a harder outside of sound art and austere ambience with a soft centre of post-Romanticist melodic drones.
First up, NWW collaborator, Matthew Waldron, re-cranks his irr. app. (ext.) vehicle for an discomfiting drive fuelled by a wierd mixture of dissonant effluvia. Inside “Whickering Mechanical Parapropalaehoplophorus” a slowly modulating sound hovers behind an up-close rattle and hum. Twisted moans and a buzz rendered with slapback echo (airplanes? Insect buzz?) infest the sound field. There ensues a woozy stagger attended by an ineffable feeling of fascinated discomfort. There are more corroded metal shapes and post-Industrial wastelands on “Animate structures No.1”, over which environmental collagist jgrzinich scatters a windblown array of field recordings of high tension wires and rummagings from the blasted post-Soviet heath of his adoptive Estonia. His piece sounds less like electronic music than the inarticulate speech of nature’s dark heart.
More palatable musical soundscapery comes from Miguel Tolosa and project manager Bradley. Tolosa’s project Ubeboet offers in “Agone” an ecstasy of haunting ethereality, smartly smudged. Strings at a remove and sub-aqueous operatics whisper forth from within a carpet of delicate pads, a euphonic shimmer of drone guilded by a ghost violin. Tone-poetry in motion. The unjustly unsung Bradley seems lately to have gradually removed the acousmatic veils from his sounds to reveal their guitar-generated nature. He spools out an electraglide in blue of weaving guitar strata not far removed from Aidan Baker, current doyenne of drone-guitarscapism. “Kaleidoscope” is admittedly more synthetic, less gritty, but still imbued with textural detail cycling across the stereofield, further tones being twirled into a mix of pristine steel lightly blurred at the edges. In between, veteran Colin Potter in “Bella (direct current)” alchemises liquid drones from base metal (bells, actually), sounds swelling and relenting, hypnotically heaving. Bradley protegÃ©, Maile Colbert, and mysterious accomplice Tellemake, spins her voice through a series of looping devices and VLF recordings, in a style somewhere twixt a less woozed-up Grouper and a more corporeal version of the vox-spectres from Akira Rabelais’ Spellewauerynsherde.
A mournful closure comes via doleful occasional black humorist, Andrew Liles, who plays it straight here; the breathy lilt of a violin steeped in Balkan noir emerges from some doom-laden low end-of-pianisms to unravel through ominous tolling. Liles’ “The Relentlessly Banal Landscape” strikes as a rather spare and sad affair, and fails to sound the right endnote for what proves to be a curate’s egg of a collection.
– ALAN LOCKETT, e/i magazine