Reviews: 3/26/2003

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Richard Chartier :: Other Materials (3Particles, CD)

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In a compilation of thirteen tracks recorded 1999-2001 (five which are
previously unreleased) Richard Chartier unveils a set of sound
experiments on his own label, 3Particles. Based on finite minimalism
his beautiful statics have a foreign harmony and remote parallelism to
his visual works as a designer/painter. On the unreleased “Stat(ist)ic”
a dark and narrow corridor is affected and fades in and out of aural
consciousness. Other tracks are sheer silence and void, desolation and
calm, including 1999s bare bones “3Particles” – which would be an
interesting theme song for transcendental meditation. The pieces are
fleeting, and have an uncharacteristic glow in appearance, they speak to
the weary, the worn and the ambivalent. “Spec.sketch7″ (unreleased) has
the seasoning of open wire sine waves with a repeating low-fi percussive
treatment. This disc is for those headphone dreamers who can relate to
the tongues of dolphins perhaps. Its overall tension is all in the
awareness of the individual listener. To play this in a room with any
ambient sound spill would strip its intensity. A quizzical language
between composer and audience is created by way of its nominal, almost
subliminal conventions. The enchanting “Sent” almost sounds as though
it could be a distant vacuum cleaner, and vibrates with tactile chirping
and lots of headroom. Closing with the final unreleased track,
“Silver”, is an eight minute sweepingly dark cinematic score. Chartier
teaches that there is more to less in the subconscious.

  • 3Particles

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    Hagedorn :: Home Grown (CD by Kompakt)

    Microfunk. Ambi-groove. Whatever you want to call it, it’s sweet and
    sexy. Hagedorn is Cologne-based with Wolfgang Hagedorn
    (Computerjockeys) at the helm. For some unbeknownst reason this disc
    transports me back to the days of Fiorucci, chiseled cork heels and long
    feathered blonde locks. Through the twists of punky funk Hagedorn
    indulges his listener with pop hooks and electronic pumping heart beats.
    “Electronic Music Machine” has the build up of any track by Underworld
    or Crystal Method but keeps you poised for that blast of exhilarating
    bass and effects, but hovers at the building point which creates a
    brilliant tension. Complete with some short track interludes, the
    free flowing spirit of Home Grown dares to integrate the electronic
    minds of experimental dance sounds with paler vocal tracks like
    “Inquieta” which seems a tad predisposed to the illuminated world of
    Björk. A pretty piano-based conclusion comes on “Oblidow” complete with
    a generous helping of crunchy static and sunshower sparkle. This is a
    midnight record for joystickers and dayglo splattered urbans. Plenty of
    cool attitude, with a west coast sensibility.

  • Kompakt

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    Tim Hecker :: Radio Amor (CD by Mille Plateaux)

    Austere and sensitive, Tim Hecker is a shape shifter of highest caliber.
    On Radio Amor he has presented an intensely crafted communication device
    that combines mysterious tones and harmony. Treated electronics with a
    sensitive side, very sensitive. This could be a space lullaby to some
    standards, bearing the vague resemblance to other like micronaughts.
    Though this has nothing in common with any known dance floor, it is a
    profoundly atmospheric earful. In ten seamless tracks that are pretty
    much a long playing continuum, there are moments of industrial tension
    weighted evenly by divine stretches of ambient drone. From the static
    filtered opening “Song of the Highwire Shrimper” to the muted feathery
    vibes and masked of hum on the final cut, “Trade Winds, White Heat”,
    Hecker creates a cyclical impact that courts us all the way through the
    final wavering seconds.

  • Mille Plateaux

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    Warmdesk :: Guero Variations (CD by Deluxe)

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    Guero Variations is drenched in cryptic metallic timbre and hypnotic
    percussion. Warmdesk (William Selman) has just released a recording
    that bears light, fusing it with a speckled foray of contained trill and
    bounce. These nine tracks are akin to a color-field of infinite tones.
    Based on composer Helmut Lachenmann’s piano piece “Guero” in which the
    composer exclusively plays the interiors of his upright. This is
    Selman’s attempt to de/reconstruct musique concrete making for an
    interesting approach of modernizing the traditional instrument and
    daring to split genre boundaries to make techno from a source with less
    commercial potential. These Variations are silky smooth on the trained
    ear.

  • Deluxe
  • Warmdesk
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