Čovjek zgrčen nad gitarom, vjerojatno neki eksperimentalni Poljak, stvara zvukove koji nemaju izravne veze s gitarom, kao da čeprka po crijevima/žicama apokalipse, a možda ga nitko i ne sluša, poput proroka koji urliče na ulici a ljude baš briga.
The direct inspiration for “FL/DC” were my two stays in the USA. What struck me the most was the way American approach religion. In Orlando I discovered numerous televangelists TV channels talking about the end of days. This combined with the Fukushima updates gave me this strange impressions of watching a direct broadcast of Armageddon – Łukasz Ciszak
Influenced by a couple of stays in the US, during which he was affected by the evangelist televisions perpetually talking about the approaching ending of everything, Ciszak attempts to represent his impression of being the beholder of a forthcoming Armageddon through a pair of extended improvisations, on occasion interspersed with metropolitan echoes (TV again, children at play, road talk and so on). The climate is pitch-black, foreboding even in the quietest condition, such as the record’s very opening; clean picking and undistorted tones unwrap a predilection for non-consonant jangling and not exactly rosy shards of phrase. When the thicker strings of the bass and the baritone guitar come out and the mix changes state, turning into a drenched mass of overdriven layers and hectically unruly loops, we see what the Polish guitarist had in mind. The droning becomes consuming, the monolithic chords deadly grating. The cumulus of low frequencies takes command, and – with the exclusion of a few minutes of recess in “DC” – the whole roars until unequivocal mayhem, as the listener is ultimately left – without oxygen – in befogged muteness. Earnest sonic grimness, as we always acquire from this clever man. - Massimo Ricci
Redukt (2010) streaming
A new work by Lukasz Ciszak, a Polish composer, guitarist, experimentalist, and head of the Sqrt label. This is an independent CDR/net label established in 2004, focussing mainly on electro-acoustics, experimental electronics and improvisation. No surprise the label published already earlier output of Ciszak. It don?t know any of it I have to admit. But what “Redukt” makes clear is that the artist has already some experience in creating fascinating, slowly moving massive soundsculptures. Contrary to this, the pieces carry very short (reduced?) and formal titles as “FRRA/HAM”, “ALS”, “LHR” and “TPE”. Titles devoid of many meaning.
Environmental sounds and spoken word are combined with instrumental playing (guitar, sax) and intermingled with sounds and noises of unclear origin. Thick, multilayered soundscapes are the result. “ALS” has a convincing structure, and reminded me of old work by Fripp and Eno. In “LHR” I hear echoes of Kluster. On the shoulders of these veterans Ciszak constructs his own intriguing world. Yes, Ciszak knows how to built and construct his works. Sometimes however, I ask myself where these massive sound-continents are drifting to. But most of the time I?m captured by the hypnotizing beauty of his dark soundworks of fine and richly textured tapestries. - DM, vital weekly
auxin (2006) streaming
Polish multi-instrumentalist and composer Lukasz Ciszak has been known to participate in more or less improv-oriented projects, often released on his own imprint Sqrt.This new solo recording offers three long pieces – between 14 and 18 minutes long -, each featuring a succession of several movements that fuse a rather wide range of musical approaches, all electro-acoustic in nature. From the slightly dissonant guitar loops which open the first piece to the various sonic manipulations that permeate this record, one will go through quite a few changes as identifiable sound forms – such as the piano or the electric guitar – can quickly alternate with more abstract ones. Actually, it is the guitar that seems to be Ciszak’s true instrument of choice – be it looped, processed or a source of particularly elusive drones, a certain tension can be felt throughout this album. And it is in this ever-changing dialogue of colliding sounds that the highly-structured nature of the music truly reveals itself. Accordingly, this music is more like a body or rather a landscape – whose actual frontiers may appear to become wider and wider the more you actually listen. In a way, it recalls some of the “psychogeographic” explorations initiated by Ukrainian musician Andrey Kiritchenko and other like-minded artists (see the seminal compilation “Rural Psychogeography” on Nexsound) who seek to interrogate the possible intersections that can be found between the movements of nature (and, by extension, of any type of environment) and those of the human psyche. Even the titles of the pieces seem to support this, and not without a sense of humor : “We Cure Any Disease/ Protect Your Intimacy” (track # 2) or “Portrait of An Unidentified Couple” (track #1). At this point, there is no clear distinction between “background” and “foreground” music. For instance, the more abrasive, high-pitched or even metallic sounds never become totally harsh, while retaining a vague “industrial” feel, whereas the careful handling of static and feedbacks prevent drones from fully developing. What is certain, though, is that all sounds evoke some sort of austere “cinematic” atmosphere whose more romantic connotations are constantly eschewed by the inclusion of more or less rapidly-changing movements, as if the music would simply refuse to be interpreted (a special mention should be made to the wonderful third track, “This Is Chemical Burn”). However, I find the overall mood to be not unlike the uncompromising sounds of artists such as Dead Raven Choir, for instance, although they are very different stylistically. On the whole, this cdr has its load of wonderful moments which remain as fascinating as they are actually demanding and unsettling. - Francois Hubert, foxy digitalis
Time for more people to get acquainted with Polish composer Lukasz Ciszak who, besides running the SQRT label, home to several obscure yet worthy artists, produces a distinguished blend of low-budget acousmatics integrating diverse influences in perplexing amalgams of striking musical intelligence. Ciszakąs creations escape the universe of “definition at every cost”; he develops a series of interchangeable foggy scenarios which, at a first listen, could be associated with the post-Industrial canon (Cranioclast, Werkbund, early :zoviet*france: and Asmus Tietchens..). But in the almost 50 minutes of Auxin thereąs much more. “Portrait Of An Unidentified Couple” starts with an oblique intersection of electric guitar and piano that introduces a sequence of reflections for drones, feedback and slow pulses. This wacky East -European minimalism also characterizes “We Cure Any Desease (sic)/Protect Your Intimacy”, whose obnoxious sensation of going nowhere is enhanced by an almost oppressive use of cyclic noises and power plant background whirr reciprocated by (apparently) more natural manifestations and oddly tuned Partch-like clangs. In full resonance with the paradoxical harmony of a disfigured emotion, itąs a gorgeous piece, as is “This Is Chemical Burn”, the final and coldest place on the album, all bodiless melodies and penetrating frequencies. Serious stuff. - Massimo Ricci
It’s been a while since we first got hold of music by Lukasz Ciszak (see Vital Weekly 478). His first solo release was ‘Phloem’ which didn?t leave a devastating impression here. I am not sure if ‘Auxin’ is also entirely made with guitars, but I do know that I liked this much better than ‘Phloem’. Elements of noise and improvisation are still present, but Ciszak presents in the form of collages which are certainly most interesting to hear. There is good sense of dynamics here, sometimes quite soft, and at other times piercingly loud, but Ciszak keeps an ear open for the balance of his pieces. How this was made, we don’t know, other than perhaps computer manipulations of guitar sounds, but it’s surely a fine work of rougher (much much rougher) microsound guitar work. Quite nice and a major leap forward. - Frans de Waard,vital weekly
Landmarks (2008) streaming
One thing’s for sure: Łukasz Ciszak is not a predictable musician, and he’s also one of the few names active in the area of “semi-quiet sonic terrorism” whoąs able of fathering absorbing elaborations without recurring to cheap illusions, shocking images or fake iconoclasms. “Landmarks” consists of three tracks that often put Ciszak’s axes in good evidence, even more than he’s grown us accustomed to in his previous works. “Transition in patterns” begins with a mass of shrieking feedbacks that after a while implode into that world-famous definition of “ominous drone”, a disquieting feeling of menace under which various voices and signals can be heard. Over the distant echoes of an urban environment, a bleached guitar invites the listeners to get lost in a haze of industrial pollution and mind-numbing noise. Ciszak then introduces additional six-stringed improvisations whose stridency contrasts with the abnormal state of anticipation that they generate. “Rough circle” moves the air with distorted frequencies and nuclear winds that agitate an already tangible nightmare of inharmonic, non-tempered acidity, a convulsive trip through the viscera of idiosyncratic mayhem which terminates in a blissful rusting of the senses. The title track, contrarily to the others, starts pretty calmly – but never believe the weather report. An incessant mechanical rhythm takes command with growing intensity accompanied by unusual bleeps and hisses, the same voices coming out of the background once more, if only to give the faint idea of a still present humanity that is going to be radiated away by the evil nature of these spurious layers. A superimposition of jangling oblique loops adds a wry touch of dissent, barely repressed by last-minute electronic crescendos, until the sudden conclusion. Again, excellent stuff and, unbelievably for this genre, extremely emotional.- Massimo Ricci
Lukasz Ciszak is one of those artists whom you just have to admire. Running the sqrt label, he has found time to create solo releases on an almost regular basis. We all know that even more is being done by some Oklahoma residents, but the fact that Ciszak lives in Poland makes him a pioneer in his own right. It can be taken for granted, after all, that guitar and electronic drones in cinematic formats are as far out in Poland as anywhere, if not even further.
Based on Ciszak’s most recent offering ‘Landmarks’ and earlier reviews on this site, it appears that one rely on Ciszak’s output to be unreliable and a bit uneven. Avoiding narrative structure but also being too inconsequential to rely and develop on the texture of drones, the three tracks on ‘Landmarks’ combine processed guitar, electronic manipulations, spoken word samples and piano interludes to create a sound that is vaguely industrial but not as evidently so as, for example, Teeth Collection. Then, in the very last minutes of the 48 minutes on here, sombre strings and screeching bows take over to finish the album off in Svarte Greinerian mode. All of which, I have to confess, is a bit too much for me.
‘Landmarks’ is experimental music that sounds as if it was made for art galleries, and Iąm not sure if that is a good thing. Not too fond of clumsy sound installations and the like, I usually head for the door and enjoy my Machinefabriek mp3s being punctuated by street noise. Donąt get me wrong: ąLandmarksą is the work of a serious musician, and it definitely has its moments. With so many other artists working in the same field (or rather: fields) however, I don’t think I’ll come back to ‘Landmarks’ very often. 5/10 - Jan-Arne Sohns, foxy digitalis
Polish musician Lukasz Ciszak has so far a bunch of releases on his own Sqrt Label, and somehow he doesnąt get beyond – it seems. But throughout his career so far there is a line going up: quality. Itąs hard to say what Ciszak plays instrument wise, but my best guess is that he uses guitar and piano as acoustic sources on this new and electronics or perhaps even a computer to process these sounds. They work together on parallel lines. ‘Transitions In Patterns’ works towards a major humming drone space, where ‘Rough Circle’ opens with a few sparse piano tones, whereas in ąLandmarksą things work out in some bent guitar playing that is a bit weakly recorded. But in each of these three pieces things evolve/revolve towards/around drone music. It’s however the combination of the real instruments versus the electronics/software that makes this stand outside the usual drone posse, where one gets a large bunch of drones and the original source material has totally disappeared. This is quite an enjoyable release of material that shifts back and forth between drones and improvised music and which is quite a positive leap forward for Ciszak.- Frans de Waard, vital weekly
Phloem is a rough gem in a drab envelope. Of all the stuff that was sent to me, this disc would have been the easiest to overlook, which may or may not have been disappointing. Ciszak, a Polish composer, guitarist, experimentalist, and sqrt label head, offers an interesting, intriguing, yet inconsistent solo outing. Of this near 50 (!!!) minute piece, large sections seem out of place, even unnecessary. As a general rule, I am pretty suspicious of solo electro-acoustic projects. Good ideas often wither under the weight of under-designed execution or unchecked experimentalism. Phloem is not a victim of ineptitude as Ciszak?s guitar work is quite amazing and the tones & drones mixed in amongst the composition are more than pleasing. If this recording had been limited to an interchange of guitar and electronics, it would have been wonderful from beginning to end. Alas, it was not to be. At about the 11 minute mark the disc begins to tank. Unexpected and unwanted, the air is filled with tape manipulation that completely shatters the lulled vibe that was so expertly created. The rest of the disc attempts to recapture the opening environment but it becomes sadly evident the moment is lost and the rest is a slow unraveling. Itąs a minor peeve, but had this CD been divided into 3 or 4 parts, it would have been much easier to take. 8/10 - Chris Jacques,foxy digitalis
Three releases by a new Polish label and filled with artists I never heard and unfortunately no information is available, not even on the website. I believe Lukasz Ciszak is the label owner and he is responsible for the release ąPhloemą. The cover doesnąt list the used instruments, but I gather itąs mainly the guitar here. It comes to us in various forms, sometimes highly distorted, sometimes quite clearly with shimmering, drone like backgrounds and easy tinkling. At times itąs OK, but overall the music is quite unfocussed. It comes without too many structure or ideas, and seemingly doesnąt go anywhere.The same Ciszak plays guitar on ąSpectraą, together with Tomasz Juchniewicz on bass and Maciej Klimek on clarinet. Pretty much the same can be said here, with the big difference that there is a fundamental lack of dynamics. Everything goes on virtually the same softer level throughout the release, with no real big crescendo or anything some such. The instruments are played in a rather traditional manner and are clearly recognizable as such. As a backdrop sound it is not bad… I am a bit in the dark about ąAnti-Lossą. A big group of people from all over the world play together, most likely through the exchange of sound files over the internet and whoever mixed the piece is not clear. There are two lengthy pieces on this release, which both operate in a collage style: sounds swirl in and out of the mix, sometimes electro-acoustic, sometimes rhythmic and sometimes of an improvised nature. Of the three releases the best work, although I have some serious doubts here too.- Frans de Waard, vital weekly
A guitarist and composer from Poland, Ciszak is immediately soliciting attention with a well conceived formula that fuses his instrument – detuned, slowed and altered – and a nice work with tapes and field recordings. Gloomy atmospheres – perfectly suited to an ugly April morning thatąs my own today – and strange canons of metals and loose strings are presented in succession by Lukasz, who doesnąt like remaining in the same place for more than a few minutes. This obscure slide show never loses its focus, as one learns a new low-key lexicon without feeling disoriented, instead recognizing some distant influence without needing to take note of it. Braininess and obfuscation get meshed with great care; the same goes for untreated and distorted sources. Letąs keep our ears open to future music by this new acquaintance. - Massimo Ricci
Ciszak/Juchniewicz, Field Extension (2005) streaming
“Scored” for guitar, keyboards and percussion – even if it’s often pretty difficult to recognize them – “Field extension” is a 3-inch that once again testimonies about the creative fertility of Polish sound art/avant scene, of which Ciszak and Juchniewicz are two mainstays. Comprising a series of pretty short tracks whose prevalent atmosphere doesnąt leave any hope for blue skies and sun rays, the record is remarkably bewitching in its hypnotic chiming and metallic/electric nature. Most pieces profit by a single “minimal” ideaąs maximum potential, according to a compositional philosophy that recognizes resonance – harsh or less – as a carrier of echoes in the listenersą mind, whatever their anticipation might be. Everything melts into a remorseless coldness whose fumes are intoxicating but, at one and the same time, revelatory of new approaches to that difficult matter called “individual relationship with static improvisation”. I warmly suggest the use of the “repeat” mode to seriously penetrate the raw subtlety of this excellent music. - Massimo Ricci
The Sqrt Label so far released works around or involvement of Lukasz Ciszak, a Polish guitar player from the world of improv, but with Noisegarden he releases something that has no involvement at all of his. Noisegarden is a trio of Michal Chojecki on guitars and bass, Andrzej Ruszkowski on drums and Antek Sobiecki on guitars and electronics. I assume the latter is the too much delay machine which pops up wrongly used in some of these tracks. Noisegarden don’t play noise in the regular sense of the word, but they play improvised music, but that they do in a very regular sense of the word. A bit (postpunk-)rock like, less any singing, a bit of feedback, free-form figures on the instruments, but not a true exploration of the possibilities of their instruments. Sometimes it’s alright, sometimes it is rather tedious. Nice to hear once, but I am not too sure about a second time.
Of much more interest is the ‘Field Extension’ release by Lukasz Ciszak and Tomas Juchiewicz, who plays keyboards and percussion. Their six short improvisations sound like processed field recordings, but upon close inspection, they are indeed music for drums, keyboards and guitars, all set to play drone music. Violent, loud drone music that is, one who frequencies pierce straight into your brain. Vaguely rhythmic, minimal but throughout quite powerful stuff.
The most interesting thing is a DVD-R release with twelve pictures set to music. Of course we get to see these pictures, which are all shots from around ‘the house’: gardens, walls, interiors. Watching a static screen must lead to somewhat static music. That is perhaps what the musicians thought. Ciszak is of course present, but also OddJob, Noisegarden (with actually quite a nice track), PS Stamps Back and Antmanuv, which were the names I recognized, but also among the new lads there is nice music to discover: Emiter, The Carousel Painter, Tzil, Wolfram or Blue Sabbath Black Fiji. Throughout the music can be classified as microsound, computer processed field recordings and a bit of improvisation. No particular stand-outs, no weaker bro’s either. - vital weekly
Ciszak/Juchniewicz/Klimek, Spectra (2004) streaming
Sqrt-label appears to largely exist for the output of these individuals. This album, the fifth release by sqrt, is one 46 minute track. Music community within ear shot take note, this is very daunting. It demands the listener to drop everything. It demands dedication for the next 3 of an hour to focus and engage the recording on its level. If it were vinyl I could take the needle off the record and guestimate where to drop the needle upon return from a chore, the bathroom, hostile gardening, or a phone call. If it were a tape, I could stop the tape, take the tape out, transfer it to another tape player and pick up where I left off. CDR’s do not accommodate any of these kinds of luxuries. Iąm recruited, or rather drafted, to wait this thing out, to give it a full listen. I apologize. I didnąt engage. Not to say that this was a bad recording. In fact, the recording was quite good. It is just that this review will have to suffer my rant about the plague of the long-track dancing communicable throughout experimental music. Stop it before it spreads far and wide. Criticize me as impatient, but I think there is something to be said for the proper track marking of experimental music. This album is hard to digest, but again, this is a structural fault, not a fault to the content. Here synth sounds, reed sounds, and reverby guitar weave and slow dance, things bump and clang, run into corners. What it suffers for dynamics it makes up for crispness and dialogue. 6/10 - Michael Kaufmann, foxy digitalis
C o m p i l a t i o n s
a sound guide to Warsaw
This release throws me back! Back to my humble beginnings as a journalist, when the old Heathen Harvest site was still in it?s infancy, and I was assigned my first half-dozen albums for review. One of them was ?Muzyka Voln?, a very fine collection the sought to represent some of the best Ambient acts Russia has to offer. Here is a collection that does the same, but with one of Poland?s most gorgeous, historically rich and significant cities: Warsaw.
The project was in conjunction with artists who took part in the Warsaw Electronic Festival. One very wonderful thing about this group of tracks is that they were forged with a variety of field recordings given to each artist, sounds captured in various parts of the city. These recordings were then manipulated to craft each song featured, with sounds ranging from street chatter, to traditional Polish folk, and Jah knows what else, but it all sounds great. This is a showcase of many styles not only pertaining to the artists themselves, but shows a very tender side as well, and each track clearly shows the love and appreciation these folks have for the city they inhabit.
Many of the songs are of an ambient nature, but not dark, rather sweet, and much meatier than your average Ambient affair. The grade of the results of the experimentation done for this project is superb! The electronic textures achieved are terrific, and what makes the songs complete are the many bright pads and drones included, so you get very substantial music that reflects well how each musician feels about their fine city. Some of the sweeter entries are ?Gorce? which is a nice piece with some guitar work, ?Stara Ochota? with its reverb-laden atmospheres, and ?Srodmiescie?, with slightly colder synth work, but just as emotive.
My absolute favorite, though, is ?Saska Kepa? by Michal Wolski. If there is one thing that never fails to get my attention, its heavy percussion put through a delay! But its not just that, there is some glitch-stutter applied to said percussive track, and some very pensive and expansive synth work. Goes right up there with my favorite tracks of the year. Its got a very sexy groove going on?
A great compilation paying tribute to a great place. The Griffin flies HIGH for this one.
Rating: 4/5 by Rexigton Steel, Heathen Harvest
Did I say I don’t like to review compilations? I must have. And sometimes I go all wrong, assuming the wrong things. Like here. I looked at the cover, reading about musicians and sound artists who ‘were asked to create a sound piece based upon and inspired by the field recordings made in Warsaw, Poland’, thinking it would be another one of those compilations with ‘soundscapes based upon field recordings’, lots of wind, crackle, streets-sound sort of things. That it is not, I can say, my assumptions were wrong. These field recordings lead up to a varied bunch of musical activities. Various of these lump in short actions into pieces of micro/glitch/ambient and even with dance like elements to it (like Bionular, Seven Steven, Asdf, Krysztof Orluk, Michal Wolski) but also downright ambient with Kim_nasung, Jarek Grzesica, Gregorz Bojanek or Lukasz Ciszak. Odd balls are the jazzy instrumental piece by Noiko and the more noisy outings by Arszyn and Xlorite. Actually not many of the pieces seem to be dealing with just field recordings, so perhaps that’s the nicest thing about it: they all take it somewhere else. A pretty varied bunch, all of which sound alright, and nothing leaps out. - Frans de Waard, vital weekly
A compilation of ‘a various musicians meeting organized with outlook express and soulseek’ it says on the rather sparse info, by Sebastian Chou of Oddjob and Lukasz Ciszak of the Sqrt Label. It overlaps a bit the compilation reviewed here two weeks ago, also by the Sqrt Label, as we meet again Antmanuv, Finaldoll, Trriddilu, Lukasz Ciszak and Oddjob, as-well as again new names such as Dsort, , Stirling Negative, Astroląs Kitchen and XV Parowek (ok, that one we recognized). Also the musical content goes very much into similar directions here: a bit of minimalist techno music by Astroląs Kitchen, concrete sound cut-ups by Parowek, a bit of noise by Rohypnoise/Planetaldol and various improvised music pieces by Ciszak and Oddjob. All tracks sounded more or less quite nice, with not one that was particular good, but on the other hand not one that was particular bad either. Again a good introduction for those who want to try their hands at new names. - Frans de Waard, vital weekly
There is much to learn from underground labels; as a matter of fact, this collection of electroacoustic tracks by entities coming from geographic areas as diverse as Poland, France, U.S.A., Canada and Italy is absolutely excellent in its unpretentiousness, as many of the pieces contained here could literally put to shame several overhyped big names. Concentrating their (usually pretty raw) materials and a fierce creativity in durations that never exceed the five-minute frame, all these artists manage to bring evidence of their primal impulses while maintaining complete control on the structure; industrial noise, environmental pollution and home-made instruments are the main protagonists in a series of disorientating pieces, whose unpredictability avoids the risks of an insulse classification. The dominance of gloom, displacement-like feelings and sense of doubt pervades the whole album, whose continuing efficiency and coherent, multiform facets do not require highlighting any names. Just get your copy, raise the volume just that bit and discover for yourselves what can be done with sound -even without being filthy rich.- Massimo Ricci
The Polish CDR/net label SQRT and their French colleagues Sfumato Records together present us their latest releases: two compilations featuring electronic noise productions. SQRT CD 006 offers a collection of French and Polish formatations, together with the Italian formation Tirriddiliu. These rather unknown bands deliver a wide range of rhythmic tracks, sometimes techno orientated (like by Krzysztof Miroslawski), sometimes more organic (like by Oddjob, Planetdol), or the dark drones by Atmanuv from Canada. Maciek Szymczuk’s contribution is more spacious and Canine Callgirls’ track can be compared to Francesco lopez’ material. All in all a very good industrial collection of harsh noise. Several of the artist on the compilation on Boes-shop can also be found on the compilation Soundskop#2 (like Oddjob, Lukasz Ciszak, Antmanuv and Finaldoll). Several of the remaining artists operate in the same domain, that is harsh, abstract noise. Stirling Negative is presented with two tracks, which are both built upon floating string-like synths. Dsort creates a mixture of bells, synths and scraping metal, reminding of mystyrious film sequences. And XV Parówek turns peeps and hiss into active patterns, reminding of the Farmers Manual side-project PXP. And the colaboraton project Rohypnoise / Planetdol offers harsh rhythmic noise in which distortion plays the key role. Another industrial compilation, this time even more inaccessible.- PHOSPHOR Magazine
Boes – Shop
This is the second review for this release that I’ve penned. The first introduced my brother Jimmy as guest reviewer with his Pentopaperitis Tourette Syndrome problems. Highly funny and full of swear words I don’t believe that this release should be subjected to this type of childish puerile humour. So Jimmy has been binned for now. He may appear on some other review whenever the urge takes me. A character worth developing further I think. The simplest ideas are the best. Take this release on the Polish Sqrt label as a prime example for this statement. Placed firmly in the experimental music genre this release was one of artistic freedom to modify and construct music from a set of 100 sounds created by Łukasz Ciszak and Sebastien Chou. The only constraints placed on the artists being that they didnąt use any of the sounds not provided, and the tracks were no longer than 7 minutes in duration. This recording features a whole bunch of artists I’ve never heard of, well new to me anyway, from France, Poland and Italy. All of which gives the music a cosmopolitan European feel about it. Delving into the more obscure micro glitch, ambient, organic and a minimal slant of things, the sounds that are produced are strangely compelling in a way I never thought possible. There are rumblings and modulations a go-go along with added elasticised drones and dumbfounding sharp bursts of high frequencies which keeps the music finely balanced overall. The introduction of some dysfunctional rhythmic passages binds the, more, Alien aspects together seamlessly and enhances appeal of the whole recording.The music on ‘Boes Shop’ caters for that niche market of buyers into the whole eclectic sound creation and manipulation scheme of music. The good folks at Wire magazine, monthly bible for the more acceptable face of the avant-garde, would find this right up their street. The sonic passages never trudge into excessive meanderings of chaotic noise, which it so easily could have, but still retains a dark and oppressive feel which is held astutely in check. Credit goes to all the artists involved for creating a rather beautiful and starkly understated recording that delivers so much within the restraints set. Certainly worth giving a try if this form of music appeals to you.- Alan Milne, Heathen Harvest
This one, that i received a some time ago, is an excellent compilation from a young label of Poland. You will hear : ambient, soft noises, well done assemblages, etc… You feel a lot of works behind all the tracks. If you absolutely want something negative, letąs say that there is one track wich is too loud among the others. Buy the record and find wich one (he,he,he). Special mention for the cover and packaging. One more thing : there is a multimedia track on the disc. - Patric Parent, RED NEON TAPES
As a follow-up to their previous releases (see Vital Weekly 478), Sqrt Label from Poland releases a compilation under the banner of ąBoes Shopą, whatever that may mean. Only the name Antmanuv and Oddjob rang bells, although Lukasz Ciszak (label-owner and part of the previous batch) is also included. The bands arenąt just polish, Antmanuv comes from Canada, Finaldoll, Planetaldol, Oddjob and Due.di are from France and Tirridiliu from Italy. Despite the fact that I never heard of any of these bands, I must admit I was quite surprised by the quality of the pieces. Many of the bands/projects/artists operate in what can be loosely described as ąexperimentalą music. It has ties into the world of micro-sound, ambient and improvisation, and the computer seems to be medium to either record or manipulate the music on. Itąs not that every track is by itself really super good, but the overall quality of the pieces is really nice and as a whole this is a pretty varied compilation. I guess for the truly adventurous listeners who want to seek out some new names. There is something nice to pick from. - Frans de Waard, vital weekly
A collaboration between various people and music projects form slovenia, poland, denmark and france. electronic noises, soundtrack like sounds (maybe also audio parts form movies?) clicks and field recordings, interact smoothly with each other, resulting in sometimes rhythmic or other times abstract soundscapes.the improvised character is present but both tracks keep their consistency along with the listenerąs interest. really nice one! rel. by the new and promising polish label sqrt-label. -1000+1 tilt e-zine
Cottage Industrial, vol.1
As I have said many times so far, Iąm not very fond of compilations. Thatąs why I was a bit reluctant to explore this over 70-minute block prepared by Norway ąs Humbug. I like the labeląs releases very much. Andreas has a gift of picking interesting groups, and as I understand it, this compilation is a sort of an ąaftermathą of his struggling with a host of stuff he currently gets. Heąs gathered 15 artists in the 1 st volume of “Cottage Industrial”. Contrary to the title, they are not strictly related to the music or cultural aspects of industrial movement. The area they penetrate consist of mainly ambient and noise peripheries. However, the techniques of sound generating and processing indicate that their interests include extensive spheres of ways of composing as well as equipment treatments. Indeed, I have problems telling which artists I would like to listen to in a full time format… But if I were to, I’d pick up Lukasz Ciszak (for a deep trip into the center of the sound), Verde (for interesting rhythm variations with the use of clock-working planking, and synchronization of the entire work), Ilios (for deep listening into background sounds), A.M. (for sonorous play), Id Thef Able (for following Henri Chopin’s voice works, although I’m not truly into that kind of stuff). The rest always remains the rest, not really bad, but I canąt say anything particularly good of them either…
- Krzysztof Sadza,eldritch palmer
dislocations. music for a picture.”
Normalcy inspires.12 photos featured in the photography and music album entitled ‘dislocations. music for a picture’ do not stray from the contemporary canon of youth fashion photography.They are just appearances, because every single photograph is accompanied by a soundtrack. Combined with sprightly musical texture, woven out of murmurs, frizzes, cracks and hums of electro-acoustic avant-garde and improvised electronic music, the still lifes portrayed on the photographs ? deserted streets, apartments and yards ? begin to live.The concept of “dislocations…” was to create a set of sound cards. And even though it was conceived by Varsovians from sqrt, a small Internet recording studio, its production attracted avantgarde artists from all over the world. Poland is represented in recordings by: Wolfram, Emiter and Łukasz Ciszak as well as the bands Noisegarden and Carousel Painter. A concept as unusual as the record itself.
Another curious project from Lukasz Ciszak’s label, “Dislocations” is a DVD (in European PAL standard) containing 12 pictures by different photographers, each one with a soundtrack composed exclusively for the occasion. Besides having a chance to look at some fascinating frames, we experience the whole gamut of musics related to this Polish imprint; the involved artists are OddJob, Slowtion, Planetaldol, Blue Sabbath Black Fiji, Noisegarden, Antmanuv, ps stamps back, Emiter, The Carousel Painter, Lukasz Ciszak, Tzii and Wolfram. As usual, the inherent dangers in such a kind of compilation are many, but this document escapes them through a couple of fundamental characteristics, namely idiosyncrasy and coherence. Although the tracks are quite wide-ranging, moving from pure electricity, shortwave and noise collages to impressive field recordings and obsessive drones (not to mention strange solo guitar elucubrations), everything falls in place at the right moment, thus reassuring our being about the inner beauty of those sonic detours that, in other instances, may sound less persuasive and more incidental. The parallelism between images and sounds is not always smooth, but even the most frictional juxtapositions give us food for thought and, in any case, several angles for judgement. Apart from the beautiful photos, thereąs a lot of great music to be savoured here; my personal favorites are the tracks by Slowtion, Tzii and Wolfram, but the whole DVD is quite good. -Massimo Ricci
The single condition dictated to the artists taking part in this project is that the single source had to be a guitar, allowing them to make full use of processing and modification of the instrumentąs signal, whenever applicable. The result is mildly alluring for more than half of the pieces included, only a handful of snippets wandering around the no manąs land between ?average? and ?insufficient?, the bulk attempting to seduce us with sounds that may not be so advanced yet remain adequately interesting. Emiter opens the CD with a few minutes of static humming ended by a taped voice, Charles Lavenac maintains bits of the axe’s original character while disaggregating its timbral linearity. Red Needled Sea presents perplexing reverberations in a greyish atmosphere – a little bit of involuntary Ennio Morricone-like mystery in there, and the label’s boss Łukasz Ciszak shows the will of finding new solutions through a detachedly frosty cycle of stratified jangles. Olaf Rupp is exactly himself – an acoustic improviser essentially tending to turmoil – and, just maybe, WoO wins my trophy for the most captivating track of the album, ‘Legendary transmissions’: an absorbing, and unfortunately very short, melange of interference and droning waves lulling the brain into a state of stupor that, preposterously enough, also keeps the listener alerted. ‘Inductie’ is not going to get the ‘compilation of the year’ award, but – as it happens with all of this imprint’s releases – it surely was conceived with a satisfactory measure of appreciable seriousness. - Massimo Ricci
If you wouldn’t know better then this would sound like just another compilation. But it’s not. It’s a thematic approach here: ‘all the compositions in this album, guitar was the only sound source. All further manipulations to the guitar signal were allowed’, we read on the cover. And then on second hearing this makes sense. In some cases we don’t recognize the guitar at all, hence the ‘wrong’ original approach, but if one listens closely enough one can detect guitars all around. Olaf Rupp’s unique approach to the acoustic guitar stands out: no processing, just playing the strings in a way that only he can. There is also distorted guitars, drone guitars and pieces in which the guitar seems to have vanished, sank into the sampler, computer or perhaps a long line of sound effects. Included are emitter, Christopher Riggs, Charles Lavenac, Red Needled Sea, Janin Benecke, Pawel Janowski, Lukasz Ciszak, WoO and Andy Jarvis. A pretty varied bunch with not many weak brothers around. Of course there could have been more people (Aidan Baker, Fear Falls Burning?), but now its still a pretty much o.k. release. - Frans de Waard,vital weekly