Switzerland - Full Moon 81 - 05/16/03
Field Recordings 1995-2002
By the time it hit the bargain bins at my college record store, Christian Fennesz's debut 12"
Instrument, could've really filled that void left behind by My Bloody Valentine's Loveless
as to where the guitar could voraciously roar next, were Mego not the fledgling label that it was
back in 1995. That prophecy went unfulfilled until properly ballasted with Fennesz's widely hailed
2001 disc, Endless Summer, whose curious Beach Boys/Merzbow amalgam dipped into the pockets
and heads both the noise and pop factions to the tune (and glitch) of upwards of 20,000 units moved.
Not bad for a guy whose main claim to fame is to process guitar strings by way of his laptop into
a curiously twisted, yet nearly familiar new entity.
Now history can be corrected, as Touch out of England has remastered Meister Fennesz's first
solo emission on the compact disc format. To my surprise, it still radiates seven years later with
a high, burning frequency that is deliriously destabilized, while still connected to a churning
beat, long since given up for the more complex configurations of sound both melodious and crackling
like static cling. Imagine Fripptronic's endless components tumbling in the cyclical blurs of a
washing machine, churning over and over, and you have an idea the brain wash that is within these
early tracks. It's swirling sounds revisited are reason enough to take the plunge, but this set
is also filled out with other ephemera and compilation tracks, one-offs and lost socks all aired
out. Nothing is embarassingly intimate, though some of it is frilly and frivolous. Gathered are
two mixes of Ekkehard Ehlers tracks, two versions of pieces for the Blue Moon soundtrack,
as well as contributions to Mille Plateaux's Clicks&Cuts Vol.2 and Hrvatski's remix album
from last year. Rounding it all out is a new one, "Good Man," which continues along a similar
trajectory as last year's work, with a bit more of a rhythmic element to it.
Copyright © 2003 Andy Beta