“Everything Emanating from the Sun” reviewed by Chain DLK

“Everything emanating from the Sun which is Divine Love is called spiritual; everything emanating from the sun which is fire is natural.”. Greek electronic music composer Yiorgis Sakellariou took the first sentence of these lines by which Swedish scientist, mystic, theologian and philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg tried to explain the link between spiritual world and natural one – he used the term ‘correspondence’ or ‘relation’ to describe it – as well as the Divine in his essay “Life in Animals and Plants”, a sort of revisitation of Christian belief of Creation by means of ideas, which were close to Neoplatonist outlook, as a title for this release, the first one of Corollaries, a new series by which Portuguese label Cronica is going to compile some works that got produced during the Active Crossover: Mooste, the last (but not least) residency of Active Crossover, a sort of permanent cross-cultural laboratory British sound artist Simon Whetham established in Tallinn, Estonia in 2009 in order to search new performative sound-focused strategies and possibilities for a series of workshops and sessions, where a selection of sound artist could check new working methods – an interesting idea that got hosted in many different locations such as England, Chile, Colombia, Germany, Norway, Argentina and Australia and got already documented by a compilation on Cronica in 2012 -. On that occasion, MoKS studios and space opened his gates to the brilliant Greek sound artist, known by field recordings fans for many interesting essays of digitally manipulated environmental sounds that he sometimes performed in completely dark places – I like to think he tries to emulate the “veil” of Pythagorean akousmatikoi, in order to let listeners focus on sounds without any other sensory distractions -; he didn’t make this 31 minutes and 13 seconds lasting field recordings-based composition as an aural postcard of his experience in Estonia, but it seems that his amazing way of compressing and decompressing concrete sounds got inspired by an idea that Igor Stravinski expressed in 1941, according to which natural sounds cannot become music until they are put into order and organized as “conscious human act”, even if he can’t explain the reason of the time-stretching, the pitch-shifting and the filtering of the sounds grabbed at Mooste. According to his own words, “it is about effectively placing sonic events in time and not submitting to any kind of pre-fixed rules about recorded sound”. The dilation over time intervals of sounds is maybe the most relevant aspects: the first similarity I noticed is the one with some experiments on overdubbing of tapes that many performers tried and if you play this composition by changing tempo, what could sound like the slowed noise of a train could turn into the obsessive mechanical hammering of a power loom for example. At the end of his introductory words, Yiorgis returns to Stravinsky’s thoughts by stating that maybe the conscious human act that he required could simply be the act of listening: “this activity, potentially profound and meaningful, establishes a form of communication between the listener and the environment but remains a personal experience. Music, besides making a connection to the cosmos, additionally sets a relationship between human beings, it is a social construction. As a shared activity, music brings together composer and listeners in a transitory time and space.”. His words could even summarize the spirit of Active Crossover… Vito Camarretta

via Chain DLK