ERIC CARLSSON / DAVID LACEY / PAUL VOGEL / MARTIN KÜCHEN – Chipshop Music

(Homefront)

In any case, it’s EAI. This is the answer to the many questions that listening to “Chipshop music” raises, and not rarely. Two long tracks – including a King Crimson parody, in name only – played with an assortment of instruments and materials which include percussion, electronics, saxophone, pocket radio and computer. The first improvisation alternates situations and settings that could easily be associated to AMM on the one hand, to a malfunctioning microwave oven on the other. Watching from a third angle, one pictures a squad of men at work with muffled tools, in order for them to avoid public disturbance – except during a couple of intense high-frequency shrieks. Timbres are virtually unrecognizable and the feedback meshes with the reeds’ squealing harmonics; the buzz of the quartet’s activities is more or less omnipresent, making me think about life in an unknown subterranean site from which external sounds can just be intuited. Fascinating, sub-urban, thought-provoking stuff indeed. The second half of the album again mixes chance and obscurity, at times recalling the humming soul of a peripheral town heard from afar, then becoming concretely noisy and uncontrollably nervous in thirty seconds, scraping matters and wavering failures alimenting the necessity of a clear sky in an otherwise grey day. Then, all of a sudden, a hundred coffees are apparently ready and everything starts whistling, although inside the machines there’s actually mercury. It’s only EAI but I like it.

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