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What are the expectations minimalist musical artists have for their audience? The live experience aside, what presumptions are set forth for the listening experience of a consumer of a CD? Will the listener's happening be on a bus (via headphones) or in a sterile sound room? And what part will background noise and visual distraction play?
A recording like Remoto by Klaus Filip (sinewaves) and bassoonist Dafne Vicente-Sandoval elicits such questions. Their minimalist improvisations presented in two tracks (one in studio and the other a church) invite the listener into the sounds.
Filip is an Austrian innovator of electronics and laptop performance. He has performed and recorded with the likes of Christian Fennesz, Eddie Prevost, John Tilbury, Axel Dörner, and Jean-Luc Guionnet. Here he limits his presentation to sinewaves unfurling long tones throughout. His sonic painting lays down a background of atmosphere that is both meditative and somewhat tactile.
The notes Dafne Vicente-Sandoval's bassoon emits are not typical of a double reed woodwind. Rather they are tapping its body, breathy exhalations, and microtonal emissions. Her multi-phonic approach, like that of many minimalist improvisers, is to reinvent the instrument. She places microphones at various points along her horn (perhaps similar to Colin Stetson) to capture the barely perceptible sound.
Both tracks invite listeners to meditate on the occurrence of recorded sound and also each listener's environment. The farther we travel into the performing and listening experience, the closer we come to realizing John Cage's sound theories.
Track Listing: Odscur; Clair.
Personnel: Dafne Vicente-Sandoval: Sinewaves; Klaus Filip: bassoon.
Years ago now--in Rhodesia--listening to Voice of America with Willis Conover I heard Bunk Johnson play When The Saints Go Marching In, and Billie Holiday sing Don't Explain. I knew then there was no other life for me than jazz.