Matilde Meireles’s “Life of a Potato” reviewed by Vital Weekly

The field recordings used here by Matilde Meireles are literally homegrown. It deals with the life of a potato, growing near Pewsey, in the Southwest of England. I had not heard of Matilde Meireles before. In her garden, she grows her vegetables, plants, and potatoes. She made her field recordings in her garden, in the soil where the potatoes were, and in her kitchen, preparing a meal. Cutting and seasoning the potatoes, we hear many birds outside to indicate the rural area where she lives. All of this appears on the first side of the cassette, which paints a rather clear picture of the events. Save for the events below the surface, those are unclear, but I am sure there are woven into this. The other side, called ‘Or 38 Metres’, is less clear about the sounds. Still, according to the information, “it explores various sounds of energy used to cook the potatoes, the potatoes’ crackling sounds as they come out of the oven and sounds of the garden in an early evening, in October when the potato season is finished” and here a more drone-like experience. You could assume that these are all heavily processed sounds, but I am sure they are not. I thought this was a great piece, with the only downside is a drum sound that kicks in somewhere. Why? Do potatoes celebrate being cooked by a little dance? I would have enjoyed it more if all had stayed on the abstract side, with that fine shimmering (simmering) quality of a kitchen with food being prepared and everything making small sounds in the process. (FdW)

via Vital Weekly

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