Boomkat Product Review:
Peter Rehberg's relationship with Parisian choreographer and puppeteer Gisele Vienne began with the 2001 DACM release Showroomdummies and has continued right up to the mighty Kindertotenlieder (KTL) project with Stephen O'Malley. This album looks back over the past four years of Rehberg's collaboration with Vienne, though omits the KTL output - presumably because it's since developed a life of its own. When listening to soundtrack music (something this album is likely to be classified as) it's always difficult working out what you're missing in the absence of the visual performance element. Importantly, Rehberg's compositions function superbly as standalone works, taking on wildly divergent forms and structures across the selection presented here: while the opener, 'Murder Version' plants us comfortably within the electroacoustic DSP-frenzy of Pita's recent solo output, you'll encounter far more ambitious and subtle recordings such as the hauntingly beautiful 'Slow Investigation', which unfolds like a 21st century remix of some lost, early tape music. Those of you expecting some harsh, digital noise exercises will be pleased to hear the venomous distortion of 'Black Holes' and the cacophonous spoken word piece 'MI6', but as with Rehberg's most successful enterprises, nothing here is clear-cut, and within a single track he's able to make something very beautiful from what might otherwise be viewed as ostensibly quite ugly. 'Boxes & Angels' is based around a repeating, strobing synth riff, morphed, modulated and shattered across an extended period - it's the kind of strategy we've heard before on Pita's Get Out or the FennO'Berg releases. Waves of noise flood in alongside trance-inducing, quasi-orchestral chord sequences, resulting in something that's at once ear-bending and unnervingky emotive. It's an exceptional piece, and like so much of the music here, just couldn't have been made by anyone else. Highly recommended.