Boomkat Product Review:
Anton Lukoszevieze's avant-garde ensemble Apartment House wrestle with John Cage's rarely-performed 'Thoreau Drawings' and late period works 'Hymnkus' and 'Two' on this excdellent new set for Another Timbre..
'Thoreau Drawings' is a piece Cage wrote after being inspired by sketches of plants in Henry David Thoreau's Journal. Lukoszevieze credits the Massachusetts transcendentalist's book as being "a portal into understanding much of Cage's work of the 1970s and '80s," and notes that as a visual artist he's always been fascinated by the piece. Cage derived his graphic score from these sketches, and Apartment House work from that, layering instruments and players to complete an ensemble of 21 musicians.
Intriguingly, they end the piece with an almost 15-minute field recording American composer David Behrman made at Cage's Stony Point, NY home in the early 1970s, offering us the chance to hear Cage in his element. It's a daring artistic choice from Lukoszevieze and one that helps contextualize the music better than anything we could imagine.
Elsewhere, a moody ten-minute version of 'Two' and an extended version of 'Hymnkus' round up another absorbing set.