Review

Mara Zibens, Contact!, no. 8:2, March 1, 1995

[Michèle Bokanowski’s] Tabou (16’12”) is a rhythmically engaging work with meticulous attention to the spatial definition of its elements. Among these is speech and its components which have been fractured, creating complex rhythmic shapes which interject themselves restlessly along the horizontal plane.

Some of the speech components are incorporated into a network of repeating subtle tone colourings, elegiac in nature, which shift in and out of phase. Interruptions, false starts and digressions occur while subsequent groupings are established. This rhythmic unpredictability is gracefully executed throughout.

In a dramatic sense, there is a feeling of foreboding. A culmination of suspense is created but remains unresolved. Towards the conclusion, the “frame” changes to an intimate “close up” of an event and its perpetrator, perhaps implicating the listener in a furtive ritual therein.

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