Carlos Bechegas and Peter Kowald: Open View (2005)
Kowald's bowing sound is extremely stronghe presses very hardand he starts off with a low bowed note mixed with vocalism mixed in. He then is off with a stupendous display of bowing and fingering, drawing air raid sounds and what sounds like cow mooing, only to switch to slapped harmonics, changing to bowed harmonics that sound like a flute. There is much more in the rest of the first solo and the second. He is simply amazing, especially since it sounds as if there are no electronics to add to his blizzards of notes and effects.
Bechegas relies much more on the mix of flutes and electronics, and also with his voice mixing with his playing. How he is set up electronically and how he controls what happens, I have no idea. What is attractive is that, unlike Kowald, Bechegas is limited by his breath, and he manages to press so much into each phrase, sometimes totally distorting his flute, other times playing straight, while occasionally adding a second instrument by the electronics. The effect is fascinating, surprising, and intriguing.
The last three tracks have these two marvels playing together and, after exposure to the solos, the way they work together makes a lot of sense. I again cannot say anything about the notation (if any), the preparation (if any), or the cueing for changes in texture or styles. The music is extremely energetic, and, while the men are partners, I was continually drawn to the things that Kowald was doing, perhaps because I am more familiar with string instruments.
If this really was a live concert and the audience was cut out of the recording, they must have been blown away after the fifty minutes had passedif they knew what they were getting intoor maybe even if they had no idea what hit them.
Track Listing: solo 1 (6:00), solo 2 (9:52), solo 3 (7:05), solo 6 (5:47), Open View 1 (9:48), Open View 2 (8:20), Open View 3 (3:12)
Personnel: Carlos Bechegas - flutes, electronics and voice, Peter Kowald - contrabass and voice
Record Label: forward.rec
Style: Beyond Jazz