(Die Stadt)

Yet another celebrative limited edition by Die Stadt, this 3-part split CD was released in parallel with a “label night” at Argos in Brussels, October 2007. Naturally, it’s a must for the supporters of this great German artistic enterprise and, obviously, of the three entities who gave these previously unreleased recordings to Jochen Schwarz and, transitively, to the lucky 500 that will be shrewd enough to act fast. As expected, Duncan’s track – captured in San Francisco on July 2007 – is very variegated as far as dynamic contrasts are concerned, ranging from minuscule subsonic emissions and overtones from hell to tense states akin to a pre-cataclysm’s growing anxiousness. Asmus Tietchens and Thomas Köner’s wonderful piece (taped live in Montreal, 2003) is the most riveting in terms of pure membrane fulfilment, small sounds and microscopic disturbances trying in vain to distract our concentration from a snow storm of radioactive currents and infinite suspensions, the ground crumbling under the weight of our body without the will of moving a muscle off the original stance we had taken. You won’t get the hissing of summer lawns from Von Hausswolff; his segment – a performance from 2005 at the All Tomorrows Parties festival in London – is in fact the enigma of the entire disc, beginning with an Alvin Lucier speech, then focusing on cyclical treated squeaks and shrieks by sampled birds (at least I think so) sustained by increasingly discernible frequencies, both humming and frictional, the whole amidst audience chit-chat. With the passage of time, we’re trapped in the ropes of stolid incomprehension but remain convinced that the substance is there, just like it always happens in every episode by this one-of-a-kind sonic experimenter.

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