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Unknown Public UP17

[Book pp.64 with CD TT 66 mins, July 2006; UK Distributor Discovery]

Will Menter, Efterklang, Tango Crash, Jeff Reilly and Jerry Granelli, Piotr Kurek, Nicolas Repac, Stimmhorn, Terje Isungset, Spaturno, Askew and Avis, Andrew Peggie, Roxanne Turcotte, Arild Andersen, Stefan Klaverdal and Paul Lansky


- - there are plenty of amazing sounds to hear, from tangoing sirens to digitised cutlery; from temporary instruments of ice to the bewildering possibilities of the ubiquitous laptop, packed to the digital rafters with alchemical software - -


It is a privilege for a near-eighty year old editor of an eclectic exploratory mainly-"classical" (whatever that means) web journal to receive regularly the always welcome releases of Unknown Public.


They used to reach us in discreed brown boxes, nowadays given MP's expanded cult support, lavishly produced as elegant books with full length CD samplers in the back.


For most readers of Musical Pointers it is the latter which will engage attention first, and playing it through has been a rewarding and greatly enjoyable hour and a bit of contact with the truly new, every track with a crucial technological component.


I was intrigued especially by Christian Zehnder's vocalism (close to the (in)famous David Moss in Salzburg's DieFledermaus) with double alpenhorn, wippkordeon etc; the extremism of Terje Isungset ice music (recorded in Sweden's Ice Hotel at minus eight degrees Celsius); Menter's sound sculptures created in the most unlikely environments; two tango-derived conceptions, by Tango Crash (with nonsense language like Kagel's Tango Aleman) and Andrew Peggie's Grand Tango (but I didn't like his electro-mechanical aerophone, nor very much Bjorn Kleiman's romantic violin, harking back to the 19 C, united with Stefan Klaverdal's computer); finally Paul Lansky's Table's Clear, digital exploration of all the sounds his children could make in the kitchen.


I have not yet read all the articles (each enticingly illustrated) but Paul Lansky's The Importance of being digital is of importance not to be minimised; required reading for every concert goer or record collector.


A fuller version of Lansky's essay, expanding on his radical philosophy can be accessed at http://www.music.princeton.edu/~paul/lansky_beingdigital.htm.


See also our previous reviews of Unknown Public UP 15 & 16 at http://www.musicalpointers.co.uk/reviews/cddvd/DancingListeningUP15.htm



© Peter Grahame Woolf July 2006