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Boomkat Product Review:
Another very special re-issue on the Unseen Worlds label (who put together the world-beating Laurie Spiegel ‘The Expanding Universe’ reissue this month), ‘Woo Lae Oak’ was originally a CalArts commissioned piece for radio broadcast in 1981, and eventually surfaced in ’83. A single near hour-long piece, Carl Stone’s expertise is in giving the drones (which sound like a string instrument and some kind of flute) a human quality, and allowing the imperfections to inform the direction of the flow. There is an unmistakable Eastern resonance to the piece, and while it might be named after a Chinese restaurant it is far from pastiche. There is heart and soul here, and while we might all be sick to the back teeth of ‘drone music’ at this point, Stone shows that there’s far more humanity in the humble drone than many even consider possible. Incredibly measured music, and all the more effective for it. Highly recommended.