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Raphael Malfliet: LE10 18-05

Jakob Baekgaard By

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Belgian-born electric bassist and composer Raphael Malfliet continues to explore the complex worlds of sound that he introduced on his acclaimed debut, Noumenon (Ruweh Records, 2016). However, his second album LE10 18-05 shifts focus from the tight constellation of the trio to the extended possibilities of a large acoustic ensemble.

On Noumenon, Malfliet already understood how to create elaborate abstract layers of sound with a technique that seemed to make the referential sound of the instruments disappear, but LE10 18-05 brings the instruments back to life, using the recognizable sounds of woodwinds, brass instruments and strings. If Noumenon made something big out of something small, using the trio of guitar, electric bass and percussion to paint a many-layered canvas of sound, LE10 18-05 takes something big and makes it small, focusing on the tiniest detail of the instruments and the transition between sound and silence, stillness and movement.

Malfliet is interested in working with pitch and register and the space between composition and improvisation. He has used the metaphor of gaming to describe some of the principles he uses that allow the individual musician a large amount of freedom within a defined set of rules. The result is a clear artistic vision where each voice from the instrument is felt in a musical tapestry. The music is multidimensional, so to speak, and sound is bent in real time as tones are stretched, and a barely heard buzz transforms into a brief moment of thunder on "Arborescence."

The compositions on LE10 18-05 are sensory landscapes rich in texture, but also inhabited with dialog between musicians reacting to each other. Malfliet, the instrumentalist, steps back to facilitate a conversation between the members of the ensemble that is both structured and unpredictable and, while many of the instruments remain recognizable, they are also pushed to the limit and transformed into different shapes. LE10 18-05 is a work that shows an uncompromising artist on the path to new discoveries.

Track Listing: Arborescence; Supersonic; Orbital Decay I; Orbital Decay II; Orbital Decay III; Scintilation; Blazar; Parcours; Trajectory.

Personnel: Raphael Malfliet: electric bass & compositions; Karin De Fleyt: flutes; Leonhard Huhn: clarinets & alta saxophone; Elisabeth Coudoux: cello; Frantz Loriot: viola; Cécile Broché: violin; Elena Kakaliagou: horn; Henrik Munkeby Nørstebø: trombone; Carlo Costa: drums & percussion; Toma Gouband: percussion.

Title: LE10 18-05 | Year Released: 2019 | Record Label: Ruweh Records

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