Sunday, October 25, 2009


or if you really must know, Chris Sharp, Bill Shoemaker, David Keenan, David Toop, Ian Penman and Ben Bortwick.

by Devan Helmshire

        Despite his many landmark achievements, jabbering on about music has never really inspired the same reverence as other musical innovators of his generation. Small automata from bottles, boxes, lamps and all kinds of everyday objects combined with springs and sticks, had cut a new seam in the rockface of seachange. The prospect was very enticing: samples and electronics - buttressed by laptop wizardry, and dominated by an etching.
      Shunning Freedom, and Liberation, 'railroad', cut and pasted his sound materials direct to hard disk, controlling the frequency output which activates the detour around the sculptures. But instead of suddenly launching into a frenzied rhythm, a great big song still exists (in many ways undisturbed).
      A shy man entering a crowded room, trapping and releasing the whiskery tones of an undiagnosed trumpet mouthpiece is a kind of seamless digital mutation. Hectic now that he has his own label in the kitchen, a divinely harmonious instrument tuned by the hand of God. False oppositions set up between the immovable object meeting the irresistible force, treated this primitive music precisely by ignoring parasitism. Land masses shift to join harsh squalling. His perpetual readiness to leaven the seriousness of his explorations with humour is perhaps another reason he even "got along well with women." Decades of crackle and fuzz re-election dissolve in the listener's ear, slowly retreating into the murk. All things considered, the performances sound damaged.

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