Boomkat Product Review:
Mesmerising side of two previously unreleased Charlemagne Palestine pieces, recorded by Mayo Thompson and Kurt Munkacsi, effectively revealing the groundwork for his early masterpiece, Four Manifestations on Six Elements in 1974 at the grand theatre of Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania.
Untouched and unheard by Palestine for more than 40 years, a recent listening session between Palestine and Alga Marghen revealed moments of genuine beauty in the tapes which totally warranted this release, both as a historical document of the time surrounding one of his most important recordings, and as a striking new release in its own right.
Four Manifestations on Six Elements is easily one of our favourite pieces by the stuffed toy fancier, and thus it’s a total pleasure to wrap our ears around the sessions that went into its creation. On side A we find the 15 minute Voice Piece, recorded in the night of January 25th, 1974 and revealing Palestine’s cirrus falsetto occasionally rising over airborne clusters of sustained Bösendorfer chords that ebb, flow and pulse with effortlessly natural grace. By the end we’re practically floating into the 2nd set of recordings, made the same night and the next, in two takes of Bösendorfer + Voice, with more soothing, lulling cadence in Take One, where the falsetto really comes into play, and then in Take Two’s radiant ten minute play of swirling bass and shifting overtones again with that ethereal, almost childlike vocal.