[(1.8) sec]

“High volume listening on speakers recommended”; that’s what is written on the cover, adorned by a cold-looking photo by Taylor Deupree. Indeed, “Plateformes” is one of those records where the collaboration of the house walls, reflecting and refracting the impressive throb of the adjacent frequencies, is mandatory. It’s all the more interesting that this music was captured live (Paris, 2005) as one would instead think of it as a pre-recorded installation soundtrack, its engrossing algid power as a catalyzing enhancement of the relationship between space and cerebral (in)activity. Another striking aspect of this piece, at least in many of its sections, is the stark contrast between the ominous hum of what I believe is Boghossian’s electric guitar and the biting hyper-acuteness of the winds (Rives’ soprano sax and Saladin’s amplified bass clarinet), a dichotomy that’s as simple as a black/white divergence but whose result is in effect an achromatic wave of textural manipulation. The most obvious reaction to this gradual penetration of electroacoustic rays could be a comparison with Eliane Radigue’s timestretching radiations; what starts as a piercing juxtaposition of highs is soon joined, then materially gulped, by a painkilling murmur enriched by almost visible oscillations and beatings whose rhythm is in constant change, like our heartbeat in relation to the intensity of an effort. The instrumental sources waste no time in finding an even-tempered balance, slightly pinched by insidious semi-distortions that are typical of narrow intervals, especially major and minor second. These small indentations of inertia introduce a progressive rise of extensive layerings of the three voices, which in the final ten minutes play hide-and-seek before finally settling down in apparently definitive calmness. Complete silence is required to enjoy the stirring consequences of “Plateformes”, for sure one of the very best releases of 2006.


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