Albrecht Maurer - Norbert Rodenkirchen: Loplop's Call (2014)
How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
German and international music scene stalwarts, violinist Albrecht Maurer and flutist Norbert Rodenkirchen juxtapose the visual arts with music, focusing on German surrealist painter Max Ernst's ideologies, poetry, and techniques duly noted in the album liners. Here, the duo casts a hybrid, folk, jazz, and classical muse while bringing a polytonal agenda to the forefront, and uncannily melding a sense of antiquity with a newfangled complexion. These aspects are partly attributed to Maurer's use of a gothic fiddle that forges a pastoral musical climate.
One of the many rewarding factors here pertains to the duo's continual sense of vibrancy and disparate plot developments. They wade through menacing vistas, but also integrate numerous melodic hooks amid thorny unison breakouts and hearty improv excursions during extended bridge workouts. Maurer's rustic sounding gothic fiddle adds a sense of nostalgia. As the musicians decompose and rebuild themes along with lavish sound-shaping maneuvers while sustaining an innate rhythmic vibe throughout.
"Wall Ums Rot" is devised on Maurer's droning fiddle lines and Rodenkirchen's soul-searching flute phrasings, dappled with ominous overtones. However, the preponderance of this set is upbeat and highlights the musicians' resourcefulness. On "Kachinas," their whimsical improvisational escapades are rhythmically enhanced by Maurer's string plucking and soaring staccato lines, conjoined with Rodenkirchen's linear alto flute patterns, bearing an impassioned jazz-centric groove. They create tension, yet on other tracks the artists seamlessly fuse beauty, eloquence, and hard-hitting exchanges, largely framed on tuneful motifs. The final piece "Peggy," is modeled with nimble string movements and Rodenkirchen's pirouetting developments over the top. Overall, the duo's glaring ingenuity and synergistic interplay, yields a full-blown artistic experience that offers a 360-degree value-add, streaming with qualitative output.
Track Listing: Loplop’s Call; Whatever Met My Ear; Zeynebim; Loplop’s Mind; Die
Windsbraut; Wall Ums Rot; Kachinas; Loplop’s Home; Pour Qublier;
Helpless Flames; Loplop’s Dream; Peggy.
Personnel: Albrecht Maurer: gothic fiddle, viola, voice; Norbert Rodenkirchen:
transverse flute, alto flute.
Record Label: NEMU Records
Style: Free Improv/Avant-Garde