February 20, 2004

Anglo-Uneasy Listening for today:


1. Virginia Astley's From Gardens Where We Feel Secure . Bought this on Marcello's fine recommendation . See also Pete's enthusing at It's All in Your Mind. Astley's is a kind of semi-ruined pastoral, a bucolic summer-hazed delirium shadowed by mumbling disquiet, in which mechanically-iterated found sounds are put into concert with an oneiric chamber music. Regular k-punk readers will be delighted to know that this album began as a series of demos produced by none other than John Foxx.

2. Gavin Bryars' The Sinking of the Titanic . Bryars' uses the hymn , 'Autumn' which was reputedly played as the Titanic sank, as the basis for this epic meditation on disaster and inundation. 'My initial speculations centred, therefore, on what happens to music as it is played in water. On a purely physical level, of course, it simply stops since the strings would fail to produce much of a sound (it was a string sextet that played at the end, since the two pianists with the band had no instruments available on the Boat Deck). On a poetic level, however, the music, once generated in water, would continue to reverberate for long periods of time in the more sound-efficient medium of water and the music would descend with the ship to the ocean bed and remain there, repeating over and over until the ship returns to the surface and the sounds re-emerge.'

Posted by mark at February 20, 2004 06:15 PM | TrackBack