Philip Samartzis & Eric La Casa’s “Captured Space” reviewed by Neural

Even in Kruger National Park (South Africa), a huge subtropical area, crossed by many rivers and by the Tropic of Capricorn, hosting the provinces of Limpopo and Mpumalanga, it is possible to identify a sharp division between natural and constructed landscapes. The latter are definitely smaller and made almost exclusively to allow the tourists to visit these locations and enjoy a unique landscape. In contrast to the European landscape, where this difference is softer and the countryside is largely the result of an anthropic adaptation, here indigenous nature, inhospitable for human beings, is preserved as it actually is. Tourists are confined within some highly delimited areas, often with high fences and high-tension electric enclosures. As it also usual in any park, there are souvenir shops, restaurants and shelters for the tourists, and several rest areas. Philip Samartzis and Eric La Casa recorded the sounds of Captured Space over ten days. Because of the strict regulations of the park, which the two artists initially ignored, every audio recording concerning the open spaces was made on a vehicle, or inside the environments they lodged in during the night. Most of the time the sound was “far” from the field recorders, but eventually for the project this turned out to be a great creative possibility, rather than a limitation. The duo could physically report the reality of an uncontaminated yet claustrophobic space, where human beings are just passing by, while animals paradoxically are more free than the exotic mix of people who are constrained by their environment. The work by Sarartzis and La Casa might look controversial, due to the way it was made, but it depicts a “non-ordinary reality”, by showing a quite regulated context. The final result is some brilliant and rich recordings, cleverly spatialized and full of unconventional sounds. Aurelio Cianciotta

via Neural

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Síria’s “Boa-Língua” reviewed by Fluid Sonic Fluctuations

Welcome to review number 113 on Fluid Sonic Fluctuations in which today I’m featuring the fairly recently released album by Síria titled Boa-Língua. I received this album as a review copy linking to a Bandcamp download code from the Crónica label. Crónica is the label which actually inspired me to start this blog and over the last two years I’ve often featured and reviewed various Crónica releases both new and old on this blog. Just like I did with Quantum Natives I’ll give a bit of a description of Crónica both for people who haven’t checked out the previous reviews as well as keeping in line with my now even more expanded review style. Crónica is a Portuguese mixed media label founded by a group of sound artists, experimental musicians and audiovisual artists that include Miguel Carvalhais (who’s most in charge of the label nowadays and has mastered and designed many of its releases), Pedro Tudela, who both form the duo @c, an immersive sound art and abstract experimental music project that often utilises field recordings and collaged abstract musical and non-musical sounds to create immersive cinematic experiences based on a philosophical attitude to sound as well as deep listening into various sonic environments. I’ve reviewed various @c works on this blog before. Other founding members of Crónica include experimental musician Pedro Almeida (Pal) and visual artist Lia who uses custom programming to create her moving and captured abstract visuals. Quite matching in spirit to @c’s sound works Crónica’s releases form an ever-continuing chronology of sound, music and noise on various formats including cassette tape, free download, CD and limited edition vinyl releases. Crónica’s discography is a mixture of Sound Art pieces, often conceptual and free-spirited experimental music and Electro-Acoustic Improvisation as well as inventive and often enjoyable forays into composed field recordings and the more arty side of Noise. Now let’s have a look at the contents of the review copy of Boa-Língua by Síria that I received. The download I received includes the album cover artwork in good resolution, the 9 album tracks in 24-bit/44.1kHz high resolution audio as well as a PDF file that contains the album’s tracklist, credits, release description and liner notes. The liner notes by Síria herself give a good impression of the concept and sonic approach Síria used when she recorded the 9 pieces that feature on the album with improvisation that goes beyond simply performing and an element of deep introspection being key elements to this album’s development. A nice short text that you can read alongside checking out the music. What is of interest for now is the background of Síria and the other artists who contributed to the music or whose music Síria sampled / manipulated to create her music. First of all, Síria herself, is a solo project by Portuguese sound artist and experimental musician Diana Combo. As also introduced by the PDF files, Síria is an extension of Diana’s other music project EOSIN, a project that mixes Turntable Music style experimentation, field recordings and other sound sources to create at times eerie and mysterious abstract sonic images, Síria mixes this approach with Diana’s vocals which in the case of Boa-Língua she doesn’t manipulate that much but mostly works as a main thread carrying the pieces of music, often using (traditional) Folk songs or as in some pieces on this album rather expressive (wordless) vocals sometimes using an invented language. Under the name Síria Diana has released two albums on Crónica, has appeared on compilations on Tropical Twista Records and Discrepant and has created a remix for Sontag Shogun released on Youngbloods. Tiago Martins has done “post-production” of the album at his own Fisgastudio, which as I could hear it on the album consists of the connecting the songs together as well as nicely balancing out Síria’s vocals with the instrumentation of her pieces. Miguel Carvalhais did the mastering for this album, which like other masters he did for releases I previously reviewed is rather crisp and clear sounding, a notch compressed in this case perhaps though, but it does keep the vocals quite on the foreground and it’s not reducing the balance of the instrumentation of the music too much and indeed Miguel also created the artwork for this release which features photos by Síria herself of this subtly painted statue of a nude woman which is not quite matching my own interpretation of the music as you will soon notice but does form nice striking imagery that does encompass the general surreal ambience of the album quite well. Amongst the sources of songwriting, samples and recordings Síria used in her pieces we find that first song Canção do Gato is a version of a song that Tiago Pereira recorded for his continuing project A Música Portuguesa a Gostar Dela Própria which documents Portuguese folk songs as sung by local citizens through his audio and video recordings. Nos Montes was remixed by @c who have released albums on labels like Variz, Crónica, Fuga Discos and Grain Of Sound, have been featured on albums and compilation released by labels like Loop, AntmanuvMicro and Variz and are also credited on releases on Dead Motion Records, Ilse and a free Edition Der Standard release. Senhora dos Remédios is a version of a song sang by Portuguese singer Catarina Chitas and features a sample from Portuguese mixed media artist Maile Colbert. Belgian Shepherd is a remix of a track of the same title by Portuguese experimental music artist Rui P. Andrade of his 2017 album All Lovers Go To Heaven, originally released on ACR. Rui has released albums using his own name on labels such as BRØQN, Etched Traumas, Haze and Colectivo Casa Amarela, has appeared on releases on Darker Days Ahead, a compilation by Indie Rock Mag, a split EP on Enough Records. Rui’s credits includes musical work on releases on Zigur Artists, Pale Blue and Warm Winters Ltd. Rui nowadays makes music under his alias Canadian Rifles which he mostly releases on his own Eastern Nurseries tape label. Through Síria’s remix (originally released on the Island Fever compilation by Portuguese experimental music label Colectivo Casa Amarela) I’ve already caught some glimpses of Rui’s sound work and based on the strong bassy resonant noisy drone elements I heard I can tell his solo works and label output will definitely be worth checking out too. Ay Işığında is a version of a song as originally sung by Azerbaijani singer Nərminə Məmmədova. Finally, For Ghédalia and Boa-Lingua feature recordings made by Los Niños Muertos which is a duo made up of Portuguese electric guitar improviser and experimentalist André Tasso (who’s also part of the big Ensemble MIA, an international collective of experimental musicians and improvisers who participated in the Encontro de Música Improvisada de Atouguia da Baleia organised in May 2016) and Bruno Humberto (a conceptual artist in a wide array of fields in contemporary arts whose works often use the location of the installation or performance as part of the artwork and who also utilised absurdism in interesting manners as part of the Gazpacho Unlimited theatre group). Now let’s dive into Boa-Língua’s music and sonic imagery.

Boa-Língua starts with the piece Canção do Gato which quite perfectly introduces the sonic imagery that this album conjured up in my mind which is that of a wandering soul on a mysterious journey who encounters all kinds of strange rituals and at times dystopian Industrial environments. The piece feels like we’re inside a circle watching an eerie entrancing ritual happen, with Síria’s vocals working as if they’re the chant forming the ritual itself, combined with the gong like percussion which emits a bassy and resonant but also quite wavy continuous droning and helps to create that nocturnal mysterious atmosphere. The song itself sounds more uplifting than the eerie gong drones suggests which makes for a great intriguing juxtaposition of musical elements and the filtered walkie-talkie noise like rhythm in the first half of the piece adds a bit of surrealism to the piece as it feels quite like a small undefined cloud drifting by, momentarily obscuring the ritual. Síria’s vocal performance itself also got some great details in it too, as she holds the notes of each repeated melodic phrase as if they’re looped and also giving the song a bit of sharp resonant edge, very nice to hear. Afterwards we travel into darker, more dystopian territory with Nos Montes which features Síria’s wordless vocals and various layers of (field recording) manipulations, loose percussion, warbled pitch adjusted vinyl records as well as eerie glassy crystallised textured and choppy fluttering bits of Noise swirling around in the centre of the stereo image as well as as between the left and right channels in a subtle manner. Our aforementioned wandering soul has now arrived in an Industrial landscape in which alien machinery seems to be ever whirring, squeaking and clicking, with the workers in this factory or perhaps even simply a workshop appear to be processing glimmering minerals which radiate vivid blue-tinted rainbows. Warbled voices and strangely dropping tones feel like the wandering soul is slowly getting both frightened and confused by her surroundings, her wordless singing feeling like a soft lullaby like song she sings to comfort herself. Her voice distorts and repeats as the environment changes and while the music follows more of a slow evolution of texture rather than reaching a real climax, the various details and new sounds fading in through the layers of Industrial sound make the immersive sonic experiments that much richer. Like many of the pieces on this album, Nos Montes is connected quite directly to its following piece with the jester like tambourine pattern at the end smoothly moving into the beginning of the following track Senhora dos Remédios. @c’s (remix) contribution to Nos Montes sounds a bit more metallic than I heard before from the Portuguese duo and is a bit more subtle in this case with many of the sonic layers sounding like directly from Síria herself. The depth, panning and immersive acoustic effects definitely make me think of @c’s work in a more direct manner, but I can say that this mixture of contributions to one piece of music definitely works quite seamless instead of being a piece where you can clearly hear “another artist joined as a collaborator” so excellent work in here indeed. Following track Senhora dos Remédios uses a sample by Maile Colbert (possibly a field recording) sounding like hissy wind and we can hear the return of the gong percussion from Canção do Gato at the start of the piece, blending with jester tambourine rhythm. This piece feels quite like our wandering soul has reached a more quiet part of the factory / workshop where we can only hear the hiss of pipes leading to the machinery in the main hall. Síria’s way of singing the song makes it sound quite ghostly and a bit like a lament, the stereo panned delay effect also adds this feeling of being inside the mind of the wandering soul. The second voice in the song feels like the wandering soul is imagining this second voice as a memory from a time long ago. A sweet introspective piece of music which does retain that nice Industrial edge the album has in a great manner. Belgian Shepherd then follows, a quite minimalist piece in which Síria’s vocals feature in a more subtle manner than other the other tracks on Boa-Língua. Now it feels like the wandering soul has moved to another spot in the factory, one in which distant sounds of machinery can be heard. Featuring distorted rhythmic glitch bass, a scraping mechanical resonant metallic drone, as well as burst of dust-laden steam and distant clanging metal poles and racks the Industrial landscape where our wandering soul finds herself has become a bit less archaic and morphed into a more efficient, cold and high-tech sci fi type of gears. Additional excellent details to the piece are the entrance in which high pitched glitched tones as well as a metallic violin like glassy screeches seem to introduce the wandering soul’s desperation as she’s trying to find a way out of this dark landscape, her warm wordless vocals being both cries for help and again a means to try to calm herself down and focus. A great mixture of contemporary minimalist Glitch elements and classic Industrial textures from what I can hear in the piece, Rui P. Andrade’s original version of this piece of which we’re now hearing Síria’s remix must be a fine entrancing piece of Drone / Noise work as all the textures as well as rich manipulations of the elements suggest the source material (which Síria also added on in this remix, which should be noted) definitely has some great creativity and an inspired personal touch to it too. Great work. Afterwards in Yarın the wandering soul has finally got out of the factory and returned to the mysterious ritual we saw before which has now progressed. Featuring long long resonating and decaying cymbal droning which is rich in many eerie and filtered sounding overtones as well as an additional layer of low (synth) frequencies which create a brooding rumbling foundation of the piece the ritual like nature of this piece is much darker. Yet Síria’s vocals are quite uplifting and positive sounding, with her voice overtaking the darkness more in this case than becoming encompassed within it. The double tracking of her vocals does create these curious sonic phenomena however, like her voice detaches itself from her as a separate second “out of body” entity and swirls around within the diffuse flowing liquid tonal mass of the ritual music. A few rays of sunlight are shining through the clouds of the morning to come for the wandering soul but the water drops at the end of the piece predict that the ominous events she encounters aren’t over yet, with the room acoustic of the field recording suggesting a narrow hollow space she soon finds herself in, perhaps a dungeon. Danse Macabre, the piece that follows is quite self-explanatory based on the titled. Indeed the piece feels quite like the sonic depiction of ghosts dancing around in a circle in the dark night. In this case however, it’s obviously the wandering soul who’s growing more and more confused and frightened by feelings that she can’t escape this strange world of mysterious ancient rituals and dystopian cold Industry all that easily. The piece feels quite “classic” in that it has a mostly pure Ritual Ambient sound with a lot of eerie resonant slow percussion rhythms, droning vocals and strange mouth sounds with which she creates strange laughing and screeching noises and spooky wails. However there are also little bits of crackling Noise hidden in the background as well with which Síria does underline her signature sound in this piece, they’re equally eerie in that they’re so “light” in the sonic imagery that you might even mistake them for rustling leaves or tree branches outside your house (this is especially the case on headphones). Further details that are particularly great about this piece are the highly resonant droning overtones mixed with the hollow water drops in the beginning of the piece creating some extra eerie gloom as well as the way Síria’s vocals form their own texture and intensely droning tone at the end of the piece, a very immersive listening experience once again. Ay Işığında follows with a similar kind of Ritual Ambient kind of ambience fading through the water drop sounds into nicely rising and falling waves of gong resonances backed by tinkling cymbals. Our wandering soul appears to have escaped her gloom and is now walking towards a beach with the aforementioned gong resonances feeling like the eerie gloom still surrounding her until the point that some lovely hollow, wooden like turntable needle and mechanism manipulations enter sounding a bit like rowing pans for that nice notch of surrealism in the mix. Síria performs the song Ay Işığında (as originally sung by Nərminə Məmmədova) with much positive emotion and there’s some lovely spacey delay effect on her vocals again but what I like even more about this piece is the way the piece’s subtly moving drone moves into sonic imagery involving soft “caressing” vinyl crackles and the sound of the sea, the swirling waves of water carrying our wandering soul to what appears to be an exit of the fever dream like landscapes she find herself in. The vinyl crackles also appear to hint at the subconscious meaning of “this is all just memories, you’re not actually experiencing this in real life”. Very intriguing. For Ghédalia then is a piece which is a bit more abrasive for its first half featuring screechy high pitched feedback tones but does flow into a more subtle kind of ambience afterwards. Dedicated to the cult Avant-Garde Folk experimentalist Ghédalia Tazartes the piece does indeed recall the curious kind of mixture of Noise, Folk and Tribal like elements I remember from listening to one of his albums a long time ago. This is also a piece which does move a bit out of the flow of the pieces that came before it as it features some more abstract experimentation within it. Síria is performing ornamental wordless vocals in this piece mixed with additional filtered vocal drones making for curious swirling drone around her. She also creates clicky bass drum like percussion using her mouth (though this seems to be more like a layering of two elements in fact). Curious are also the organ like tones in the first half of the piece. Whilst moving into a different kind of textural style, I can still apply my imagined imagery of the wandering soul to this piece as being a ritual she created and is performing on her own. This piece uses recordings by André Tasso and Bruno Humberto and I can definitely say that based on what I found about André, the guitar Noise elements are created by him and add some great rawness in terms of texture to the piece, very nice. Final piece Boa-Língua puts more focus on the recordings of guitar feedback manipulation as well as some sweet woodblock / stick percussion courtesy of André Tasso and Bruno Humberto in terms of instrumentation with Síria’s vocals being more like chanted mantras. The instrumental backing has a great physical touch to it in terms of texture, with the guitar also sounding a bit like an alarm; Síria’s calm vocals give the impression of our wandering soul slowly waking up in her bed in the morning with her thoughts still going through a bit of a confusing haze (the feedback instrumentation) and her wake up alarm having an oddly harsh sound to her ears. Still, she’s safe and sound and thereby we also come to our listening journey of Síria’s excellent Boa-Língua. I awards Boa-Língua a Polar Vision at the frequency of a wandering soul travelling through possibly imagined landscapes full of mysterious rituals, dystopian Industrial landscapes and a surreal experience of past memories. The album’s consistent flow of often vocal lead pieces of rich experimental music make for a great listening experience in Síria’s personal, inspired sonic world that blends “physical” Noise experimentation, Ritual Ambient influences, an inventive approach to using her voice in her music and a great feel for the cinematic side of Sound Art and texture based ambiences. This is a great recommended listen for fans of the more musical side of Sound Art, experimental approaches to Ritual Ambient, Turntable Music as well as a more varied approach to using Noise and Free Improvisation in more subtle manners. Síria’s song based approach also makes the music more accessible for listeners who aren’t very familiar with experimental music in general. Definitely get this album.

You can order Boa-Língua by Síria as a limited edition cassette tape and download from the Crónica Bandcamp page here:

via Fluid Sonic Fluctuations

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Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude” reviewed by Rockerilla

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New release: Miguel A. García & Oscar Martin’s “Kularrate”

Composed with materials generated by Miguel A. García and Oscar Martin in a meeting in the town of Apodaka, in Alava, Basque country, in the year 2015, this electroacoustic piece was originally released by the label Rhizome.s. Never completely satisfied with the result, during this confinement, Miguel A. García decided to revise it, reworking the mix, giving another dimension to the sounds and being more precise in the dynamics. Kularrate is constructed from purely electronic sounds, a mix of the usual no-input mixer by Miguel and the digital sounds of Oscar Martin (a.k.a. Noish), which were later manipulated and composed by Miguel. The result is an electro-acoustic piece, with rough sounds, like rust, that paradoxically was created in a completely rural environment, with the only distraction of some children that all the time were curious about the process. The atmosphere of the piece is a little dark and dense, with slight tints of threat… maybe a warning for those children to let us work quietly in our sound laboratory.

Miguel A. García, also known as Xedh, is an artist resident in Bilbao who works on the field of experimental music and sound art. Trained in Fine Arts, he works on electroacoustic composition and improvisation, using sources obtained from the manipulation of electrical devices, sometimes mixing these with sounds of acoustic instruments and field recordings.

Oscar Martin is a sound artist, independent researcher and programmer. His practice could be understood as a knowledge device where art, science and technology hybridize and converge from an unorthodox and experimental approach. From the sound dimension, his pieces propose to encourage active listening and expand our perception through the psychoacoustic experience of the phenomenon of the emergence of structures and patterns at the limits of chaos and order.


  1. Kularrate (25:38)
  • Composed by Miguel A. García
  • Original sound materials by Miguel A. García & Oscar Martin
  • Mastered by Ilia Belorukov
  • Cover drawing by Andrea Bolognino
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Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude” reviewed by Ambientblog

It’s a funny need to want to introduce an artist in every blog-post but by now I can safely assume that Rutger ‘Machinefabriek‘ Zuydervelt needs no further introduction. And, with over 60 albums released since 2009, Bruno Duplant should need no introduction either – although I must confess his name is not very familiar to me. Shame on me, it seems!

Their first collaboration album, created from ‘field recordings, instruments and processing’ is released on the Crónica label. The two (+- 22 minute) tracks ‘of pure sound exploration’ were created without ‘long discussions or conceptual heavy-handedness’ – so they may be viewed as ‘improvised’ somehow, even though they were created by swapping sound files. 

The fact that each artist’s contribution is indistinguishable shows that they are well-matched. This is not a ‘first you – then me’ mix: both tracks feel like a complete composition. 

The French titles reflect the current times, even though the sounds were recorded in 2019: L’Incertitude means Uncertainty. The first track Le Doute (doubt) is full of haunting suspense; the second is called L’espoir (hope) and is indeed more peaceful even though some incertitude remains lurking underneath. 

via Ambientblog

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Síria’s “Boa-Língua” reviewed by Musik an sich

Síria ist das Projekt der portugisischen Elektronik / Perkussionsmusikerin und Sängerin Diana Combo.

Boa-Lingua ist Ihr zweites Album nach dem 2016 erschienenen Debüt und ist eher zufällig entstanden, denn die Aufnahmen stammen von Übungen und Sessions, die nicht zwingend zu einem Album führen sollten.
Die Musik der Portugiesin ist ein dunkler elektronischer Soundscape. Drones drehen sich um sich selbst, wabernde Soundteppiche ziehen auf und eine melancholische Stimmung umkreist den Hörer. Allerdings arbeitet sie sehr akzentuiert. Hier ist nichts überladen, nein die Geräusche, Perkussionen und Sounds sind eher wie ein elektronischer Post Rock arrangiert. Die Stücke atmen alle sehr viel Luft, obwohl trotzdem am Ende ein dichter, den Hörer umspannender Sound entsteht.

Das liegt vermutlich an den ausgefeilten Arrangements der Stücke, die dem Hörer sehr viele Feinheiten zum Entdecken anbietet.

Gekrönt wird dieser spannende Sound durch den Gesang der Künstlerin. Dieser klingt sehr fremdartig, wird oft elektronisch verzerrt und unterliegt viel Hall und wirkt auf mich, der die Worte nicht verstehen kann, mehr wie ein zusätzliches Instrument. Das Timbre erinnert durchaus ein wenig an die große Lisa Gerrad die ebenso wie die fremdartigen Vocals durchaus auch an deren Band Dead Can Dance erinnert. 

Allerdings bewegen sich alle 9 Stücke im eher sakralen und düsteren Bereich, euphorische Klänge kommen hier nicht wirklich auf.

In Gesamtheit ist Boa-Língua eine sehr gelungene Kombination aus spannender (Post)Elektronik und fesselnder Gesangsarbeit. Musik wie Gesang zieht den Hörer, der sich auf diese Atmosphäre einlassen kann, tief in seinen Bann.

Eine solch ausgefallene Produktion erfordert natürlich auch eine ausgefallene Veröffentlichungsform. Entgegen dem Vinylboom hat man sich hier jedoch nicht für dieses Medium, sondern für das eigentlich längst vergessene Medium „Musikkassette“ entschieden. Das wird natürlich nicht zu einem Verkaufshit führen, aber dafür ist diese sensible und emotionale Musik sowieso nicht gemacht. Daher ist die wunderschön gemachte MC auf nur 100 Stück limitiert, für alle anderen Interessenten gibt es das Album als Download bei Bandcamp. Wolfgang Kabsch

via Musik an sich

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Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude” reviewed by African Paper

Crónica veröffentlicht das erste gemeinsame Tape der Musiker und Komponisten Bruno Duplant und Rutger Zuydervelt (Machinefabriek). Das Album besteht aus zwei längeren Tracks, deren auf meist akustischen Instrumenten, zahlreichen Field Recordings und mehrfacher Bearbeitung basierende Sounds von einer trügerischen Scheinharmonie sind. 

“L’incertitude, is Bruno Duplant and Rutger Zuydervelt’s first album as a duo. It came together very naturally, as if they played together for years already. There were no long discussions or conceptual heavy-handedness, these two tracks of pure sound exploration in the most intuitive sense, just flowed from the remote collaboration and the back-and-forth swapping of materials and compositions. The core of the collaboration rested upon trusting each other’s capabilities and on the mutual appreciation for each others’ work. These two collage-like trips are loaded with suggestions of (otherworldly) spaces and places, but it’s the listener’s imagination that has to fill in the blanks.” (Crónica)

via African Paper

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New release: Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude”

L’incertitude, is Bruno Duplant and Rutger Zuydervelt’s first album as a duo. It came together very naturally, as if they played together for years already. There were no long discussions or conceptual heavy-handedness, these two tracks of pure sound exploration in the most intuitive sense, just flowed from the remote collaboration and the back-and-forth swapping of materials and compositions. The core of the collaboration rested upon trusting each other’s capabilities and on the mutual appreciation for each others’ work. These two collage-like trips are loaded with suggestions of (otherworldly) spaces and places, but it’s the listener’s imagination that has to fill in the blanks.

Bruno Duplant is a prolific composer and a musician (organ, double bass, percussion, electronics, field recordings) living in the north of France. He has collaborated with many musicians around the globe and has also made solo works. His recordings have been published by various labels including Elsewhere, Another Timbre, Wandelweiser, Ftarri, B-Boim, Diafani, Notice Recordings, Suppedaneum, Unfathomless, Dinzu Artefacts, Aussenraum, Moving Furniture, Verz, Mappa, Hemisphäreの空虚, Falt, among others and his own label co-curated with Pedro Chambel, Rhizome.s.

For Duplant, composing and playing music is similar to imagining, creating, and sometimes decomposing new spaces/realities, and new entities. But it is also a reflection on memory, not the historic one, but memories of things, spaces, and moments. His music, strongly inspired by the writing of Francis Ponge, Gaston Bachelard, Antoine Volodine, among others, and some artists and musicians as John Cage, Luc Ferrari, Eliane Radigue, or Rolf Julius, is imbued with a sweet melancholy.

Rutger Zuydervelt (also known as Machinefabriek) combines elements of ambient, noise, minimalism, drone, field recordings and electro-acoustic experiments. The music can be heard as an attempt to create sonic environments for the listener to dwell in. Finding tension in texture, tone and timing, the result can be very minimalistic at first glance, but reveals its depth upon closer listening. The devil is in the details.

Zuydervelt was born in 1978 in Apeldoorn (The Netherlands) and now resides in Rotterdam. He started recording as Machinefabriek in 2004. Since then, Zuydervelt released a steady stream of music on labels such as Western Vinyl, Type, Important, 12K, Entr’acte, Miasmah, Consouling Sounds, Western Vinyl Eilean and Edition Wandelweiser. He also composed for dance performances and films, and collaborated with various artists, like Michel Banabila, Gareth Davis, Steven Hess, Sylvain Chauveau, Aaron Martin, Dirk Serries, Dead Neanderthals, and many more.


  1. Le doute (23:30)
  2. L’espoir (22:50)
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Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude” reviewed by Vital Weekly

Collaborations are another thing that is on Zuydervelt’s plate for many years; with Gareth Davies, Tim Catlin, Subterreanact, Anne Bakker, Chris Dooks and loads more (I thought for once not to mention the more famous ones). This was mostly as ‘Machinefabriek & …’ but maybe it’s wiser, if the other also doesn’t use a project name, to use the name Rutger Zuydervelt &, well Bruno Duplant in this case. After all the music I heard from Duplant, I still have very little idea what he does; that’s what I also noted when I reviewed his ‘Feu Danse’ release (Vital Weekly 1212′). Let’s say he is, just as Zuydervelt, a man who loves field recordings, electronics, instruments and processing. I assume this was done through an exchange of sound files for x-number of times, before arriving at the two twenty-some minute pieces here. Both pieces shamelessly show us, two men, who love their sounds, and whatever you can do to sculpt it into whatever you want. They elegantly move back and forth between high and low sounds, quiet and loud parts and clear field recordings and heavily obscured ones. The ego of either musician has disappeared from this and we have no longer an idea who does what here. And perhaps we don’t want to know either; it is not of great importance to see that Rutger did this, and Bruno was responsible for that, as what counts is the overall results, the interaction of them working together, and I am still assuming this was all done via long-distance exchange of files. I have no idea if there was a plan to follow a score, an idea, or if it was all just let’s toss a whole of sounds in the air and see what happens. I am hoping for the latter, as that’s how it sounds, free from concepts and let the flow go as it goes. That works very well here and it is almost enjoyable release. Seeing Zuydervelt have return visits with some of his previous collaborators, I hope that Duplant is among them. (FdW)

via Vital Weekly

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Rutger Zuydervelt & Bruno Duplant’s “L’incertitude” reviewed by Fluid Radio

L’incertitude has spent life in two separate countries, but in spite of its long-distance discourse, it offers a natural, uninterrupted flow of sound. For Bruno Duplant and Rutger Zuydervelt, the collaborative process was smooth and intuitive – there were no lengthy discussions, and that has carved a creative outlet into the music, allowing it to be more expressive and loosened from the stresses and pressures of expectation.

The two tracks were fired through digital cables, streaming through to the other musician via European bandwidths and long distances. Although recorded remotely, L’incertitude is a connected, united album, and one with a strong bond. And because of mutual respect, the music is elevated, the distance appearing to be stronger than an album produced in one room, when everyone is together. It’s all about the artists gelling with one another. You can’t fake a musical bond; it’s either there or it isn’t. Mutual respect and appreciation makes all the difference, turning a collaboration into a special project.

Duplant is a composer, residing in Northern France, while Zuydervelt lives in Rotterdam. Perhaps the most important – essential, even – aspect of this collaboration, and what makes it a success, is the trust and friendship on display. Respect is a key element to the music, sticking like an adhesive to every sound, making it whole and complete. From emptiness, structures are built inside the music. Some of the swirling textures are minimal, at least to an extent, vibrating with a frisson of tension, but there’s a mass of emptiness within the music; like a huge sinkhole in the middle of the street.

From within, the music slowly revolves and gathers, constructing something from its inky depths, rising up with a dynamic burst. Scattered over its ground zero are murky field recordings which include a wailing baby and birdsong…but even these sounds are distant, coming from a portal or a gateway, instead of living in close proximity. Like a static-eaten police band picked up on an amplifier or a radio, it’s a secret bandwidth that has somehow crossed over, reaching with long fingers into the listener’s domain.

Spontaneous stabbing electronics are a feature of the second piece, which expands on its musical selection and seems bolder, more experimental. Multiple sounds were exchanged, but space has been preserved. There are rivulets for the listener to fall into, to interpret, and to become part of the creative process by way of their imagination, filling in the blanks, and the well-timed artefacts are fascinating to behold. James Catchpole

via Fluid Radio

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