Boomkat Product Review:
10 year anniversary for this 90 minute-long percussive dismantling from Eli Keszler - a then prodigous 20-something laying the foundations for acclaimed later albums for Shelter Press, Empty Editions and LuckyMe plus collaborations with Oren Ambarchi, Oneohtrix and Laurel Halo.
This one’s on a super deep, abstracted tip, with the first part based around recordings Keszler made for an installation at Boston’s cavernous Cyclorama gallery. It finds Keszler stretching gigantic strings across the walls and letting small motorized hammers ‘play’ them at random intervals. Accompanied by a group of similarly outré minds (Geoff Mullen, Greg Kelley, Reuben Son and Ashley Paul) the musicians played to the randomized booming strings, magnified by the gigantic reverb of the room itself.
Probably the most stunning addition to the original pieces though is Keszler’s recordings of the Cold Pin exhibit he set up in Shriveport Louisiana, where the strings were stretched across two large empty water purification basins. You probably have an idea of how that might sound, but needless to say Thomas Koner’s peerless ‘Permafrost’ might be a good place to start.
Elsewhere we’re treated to a full ensemble recording (with the Providence string quartet), which reframes the piece as a defiantly modern re-imagining of Ligeti – dissonant, disconcerting and gruesomely eerie. About as mesmerising as abstraction can get.