The convoluted world of musique concrète is on occasion somewhat baffling. Trawling through the piles of albums available by names only vaguely familiar even to east Europeans makes picking up a goodie a hit and miss affair. And that’s where the compilations come in. They ought to be informed, coherently assembled, albums that provide a way through musique concrète’s many blind alleys. Sadly, few work beyond the “interesting.”
This one, however, is a terrifically enjoyable journey through 24 tracks assembled to be just 3 minutes long each. The 3 minute stipulation tightens up the inclination to sloppiness and, strangely, brings a playfulness to the works. There’s a very high standard here, representing some of the better constructors around (Tremblay, Hoffman and Lillios in particular are fabulous). As important as the recordings, the album comes (in a fold-out cardboard box) with an enormously useful 32-page booklet (in French and English) detailing the resumés of the artists concerned.