TJ Norris, Toneshift, September 30, 2019
Monday, September 30, 2019 Press

Based in France, Argentinian composer Elsa Justel has been developing new sound work since the 1980’s. Her latest on the reputable empreintes DIGITALes imprint is Yegl, which focuses on her projects between 2002-2017. Her work included are electroacoustic journeys, radiophonic work and fixed medium. And her medium offers little to no tedium, instead these wonderous pieces feel to be tactile storytelling of sorts. Pockets of silences, vocal cut-ups, funky breaks, dripping waters, cling-clang, symphonic interruptions, radio narration and remote instrumentation – all make for dizzying works of grandeur. Yes make sure you are sitting down, may I recommend undulating on a settee or chaise, sprawl out and stretch – as does what you are hearing. Sounds for sore ears.

… dizzying works of grandeur.


Roger Batty, Musique Machine, September 3, 2019
Tuesday, September 3, 2019 Press

Racines is a five-track album of that sits somewhere between electroacoustic composition, and subtle scuttling- to-surreal ambient sound-scaping. All creating a decidedly dream-like release — that ebbs, lightly darts and lulling shifts. Annie Mahtani is British based composer from the midlands — and has been active since around 2008. Her work flits between acousmatic and free improv — which means there is often a feeling of both surreal atmospherics and structural spontaneity / looseness to her compositions.

This CD album / digital download appears on the French Canadian label empreintes DIGITALes — and the CD is presented in the labels house style fold-out card sleeve — that features write-up about each of the tracks and their themes, in both French and English. The front cover takes in a grey graded and black tar-like spurting picture — that looks akin to melted and twisted road afloat in white space.

The five works here come from between 2008 and this year — and throughout much of the release, there’s certainly a feasting and shifting feel to proceeds, which brought to my mind images of magnified organic material. Past Links finds a blend of gentle rushing and fleeting high pitch grain sweeps, cluttering & glitching gong tones, and sourly descend sine tones. ’Round Midnight is built around rapidly building, then receding and possible slightly speed up layers of field recordings from the Amazon jungle — with all manner hissing, croaking, wet rushing, and twitting been fed out. The track Aeolian really enhances the albums strange / fevered dream quality — as we get a blend one or two distant drone layers, brooding warbling with sudden darts of bird song, water rushing. The track later builds into these weird metallic pipe like rattle & clutter textures — before once more drop down into a blend of distant drone layers, and subtle strange field record detail.

For much of Racines runtime there is this feeling of hazy mystery, grey unease, and slightly troubled dream-ness. So to me felt it little odd the way the final track exists with this more rising warm, and a little twee ethno ambience vibe, but maybe that’s meant to be the listener getting brighter / better dreams… anyway, aside from this sudden glaring shift in tone, I enjoyed what Annie Mahtani had to offer here.

… I enjoyed what Annie Mahtani had to offer here.

Творческая встреча с бельгийским композитором и медиахудожником Тодором Тодоров

ReMusik, August 7, 2019
Friday, August 9, 2019 Press

11 августа в Санкт-Петербургском Музее Звука состоится встреча с композитором Тодором Тодоров [Todor Todoroff], со-основателем и президентом Бельгийской Федерации Электроакустической Музыки FeBeME-BEFEM и центра ARTeM: «Искусство, исследования, технология и музыка».

Один из ведущих исследователей в области компьютерной музыки, экспериментатор с обработкой речи, а также создатель интерактивных систем для инсталляций и перформансев, Тодор Тодоров принимал участие во многих значимых проектах Бельгии и Европы начиная с 1980 года (с такими композиторами, как Leo Kupper, Robert Normandeau или Joshua Fineberg, Emmanuel Nunes, Luca Francesconi в центре IRCAM).

В своих электроакустических произведениях Тодор Тодоров использует многоканальную композицию, исследуя интерактивную связь между звуком и жестом в пространстве. Так, он создаёт не только «зафиксированную» акусматическую музыку, но и живые импровизационные произведения (вместе с Jean-Paul Dessy, Eric Sleichim, Stevie Wishart).

Находясь в постоянном сотрудничестве с хореографами (Michèle Noiret) и художниками (Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Fred Vaillant, Mario Benjamin), Тодор Тодоров работает в зоне трансдисципинарного искусства: например, его разработка сенсоров движения, позволяющих одновременную трансформацию звука и видео в проекте с художницей Laura Colmenares Guerra и виолончелисткой Sigrid Vandenbogaerde.

В рамках вечера, помимо общения с композитором, будет также возможно поэкспериментировать с электроакустической музыкой, сенсорами и жестами, применяемыми для звукового синтеза, преобразования и его локализации в пространстве.

Творческая встреча проходит при поддержке Генерального Консульства Бельгии в Санкт-Петербурге и фестиваля Acousmonium.

Modern Composition

Julian Cowley, The Wire, no. 427, September 1, 2019
Tuesday, August 6, 2019 Press

… fluent compositions […] characterised by agile movement and graceful transitions…


Roberto Mandolini, Ondarock, July 29, 2019
Monday, July 29, 2019 Press

L’arte acusmatica continua ad essere un universo pieno di fascino per chi si avvicina allo studio della musica elettronica. Capita così che dopo più di cinquant’anni dal celebre trattato di Pierre Schaeffer, la capacità di saper creare realtà immaginarie utilizzando trasduttori acustici è materia di studio nelle più prestigiose Università.

La biografia di Nikos Stavropoulos riporta che è nato ad Atene quarantaquattro anni fa e attualmente è un lettore all’Università del Galles, dove ha studiato composizione con Andrew Lewis e Adrian Moore.

Gli otto brani raccolti su Micro-lieux sono stati scritti tra il 2003 e il 2017. Periodo durante il quale il musicista greco è diventato membro del Music, Sound & Performance Group della Leeds Beckett University, del British ElectroAcoustic Network (BEAN) e della Hellenic Electroacoustic Music Composers Association (HELMCA). Riconoscimenti importanti che fanno di Stavropoulos un’eminenza nell’universo elettronico accademico.

La più vecchia tra le tracce raccolte su Micro-lieux e Atropos, quasi undici minuti in cui il compositore inglese d’adozione sembra voler farci entrare in caverne oscure per metterci a contatto con miti antichissimi: le dinamiche dei timbri utilizzati sono stupefacenti, in grado di passare da frequenze altissime a rantoli subsonici che smuovono le pietre.

La sintesi granulare utilizzata da Stavropoulos è una tecnica che permette di creare effetti stupefacenti partendo da semplici suoni monofonici: su Granatum e Topophilia viene creato uno spazio multidimensionale dove far muovere gli oggetti seguendo chissà quali leggi della Fisica. Su Granicus il collega Alexander Pepelasis accompagna Stavropoulos con percussioni marziane.

... the dynamics of the timbres used are amazing, able to pass from very high frequencies to subsonic rants that move the stones.


Roger Batty, Musique Machine, July 24, 2019
Wednesday, July 24, 2019 Press

Accord ouvert is the debut album from Belgium based electroacoustic / acousmatic / musique concrète composer Sophie Delafontaine. The CD album/digital download servers up six tracks that dart between mysteriously unsettling, playful & bizarre, and inventive & daring — all to create a real sonic roller-coaster ride of a release.

Sophie Delafontaine was born in Switzerland in the late 1980s. At the age of twenty she decided to leave her home to move to Belgium where she studied acousmatic composition at the Conservatoire royal de Mons, she gained her master’s degree in 2014- and since she has been composing work that follows links / connections between acousmatic music and contemporary dance.

The six pieces come from between 2013 & 2018 — and each lasts between the seven and fourteen-minute mark, with an album total runtime of sixty-three minutes. Things begin in wonderful dizzying and unbalancing manner with 2015’s Ondiésop — which moves between hovering drone rises created by reverberant bell, creepily bounced & modified voices, and field recording of seagulls, waves and water. Later on, we have the decidedly unsettling & un-nerving Ressort spiral — this 2014 piece brings together winding down & up music boxes, ticking & tocking clocks/ machinery, with sheared & stretched French chatter — all to create a wonderful nightmarish & surreal atmosphere.

Though-out the release Delafontaine highlights both her flair for creating both unbalancing moodiness and sonic playfulness- with each of the six works showing these two talents in a fairly even balance. I guess as not been a French speaker myself, some of the more dialogue-heavy moments here are lost a little on me, but these never last too long — and when they are present she adds in other elements to the mix to create — uneasy, playful-ness or a mixture of the two.

Accord ouvert is a brave and decidedly varied debut release where you really don’t know where you’ll spin off, or dip into next. It shows Delafontaine as a very arty and focused sonic magpie, collection sound elements — be it field recordings, modified instruments / tones, or voices — into a decidedly spell-bind sonic experience.

… a very arty and focused sonic magpie, collection sound elements […] into a decidedly spell-bind sonic experience.

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