Review

Frans de Waard, Vital, no. 344, October 22, 2002

It’s good to see that this series has new life, after the two recent ones, here are two more issues, in what is now a 30 some mini CD’s of electroaoustic and musique concrète. Zbigniew Karkowski is of course well-known, at least in these virtual pages. His music is violent, loud and harsh, and is already released on many labels around the world. This piece, on the cover noted as musique concrète, is mostly a long, low range frequency piece. Musique concrète… what’s the concrete part of it? Hard to recognize the original, concrete source here, as it seems to me that Karkowski is working with sine waves that have been treated in the studio. But this aside, it’s a nice piece of low end hum that has a strong presence in the space you’re in. The walls vibrate and seem to collapse under this set of sounds. It’s harshness for sure, but one that is different from the usual harshness. Zen like austerity is what we are dealing with here.

The other new 3" is by Lionel Marchetti, his second one in the series. Recentely Marchetti released a whole bunch of works on various labels, such as ground fault and Erewhon. This work is dedicated to Pierre Schaeffer, the grandfather/inventor of concrete music. His first piece delt with train sounds, so Marchetti by return goes back to train sounds too. It’s a piece for one loudspeaker, thus glorifying the early days of musique concrète. Sounds from trains aswell as sounds from journeys and travelling make up this piece. There is even a short sample of the Étude aux chemin de fer from Schaeffer to be heard. The resultant piece, in two parts, is a fine collage of train sounds, most of the times to be recognized by their flute signals and people talking, music from walkmans etc - all of those daily sounds that are so connected by going on trains. Great, imaginative work.

Great, imaginative work.

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