“... material ranging from minimalist through field recordings to
noisescapes.”— Remote Induction
“ ... gathers the electronic underground for this double disc look at the development of sound and technology in the 20th century”—Music News Network
“ A good package, nice concept and a lot of music for a reasonable price. I'm impressed with the selections from the artists...”—Brainwashed
End ID is a 2 CD compilation from the Japanese Digital Narcis label which is intended to reflect the technological innovations of the last century, particularly in reference to their bearing on sound art. To reflect this the 2 CDs gather a number of sound artists from around the world and they present their contributions - material ranging from minimalist through field recordings to noisescapes. The artists assembled include the likes of Andrew Lagowski, Eric La Casa, Koji Marutani, Ryoji Ikeda, Zbigniew Karkowski, Aube, Thomas Dimuzio, Atau Tanaka and Kasper T. Toeplitz. the material I suspect is more about art and documentation of experiments rather than entertainment - with which it isn't really a release where I sit and think about which tracks sound good, its more a case of finding interesting elements, effects and techniques. Some of the tracks have notes which give a particular insight to what is going on - a particular example of that is the piece by Tanaka which makes comment on was and how it is dealt with by modern media, which is reflected by him taking a particularly significant picture and using it with a couple of programmes to create the sound of the piece. Of the material by artists I know well enough to comment on the Aube is strong and the Ikeda piece is surprising with its combination of his typical pulses and cut up dialogue, something which is particularly effective. —PTR
Music News Network
Japan's Koji Marutani (who has appeared on several Touch compilations) gathers the electronic underground for this double disc look at the development of sound and technology in the 20th century. It is not only another chance to promote the scene working with digital noise, Mego's Rehberg & Bauer for instance, but also to equate experimenters coming from power electronics with those of academic backgrounds like Maggi Payne.
The CD's concept requires the use of a range of sound sources, and an emphasis was placed on communications technologies: dictaphone (ERG), records (Michael Gendreau & Ralf Wehousky), radio (Ryoji Ikeda, Koji Marutani), television (Aube) and the domestic answering machine (Venoz TKS). Maggi Payne worked with raw short-wave radio broadcasts in which she found a compressed history of telecommunications - signals from a basic Morse code to current forms are all present simultaneously.
The more unusual sound sources on End ID include Mark Behrens' use of a "light-to-sound transducer" for his electronic-concrete piece "Ccdeinnoorsttu," and Zbigniev Karkowski & Helmut Schafer's sampling of the hums and drones of a German power plant for "Don't Touch Me I'm Electric." And the strangest of them all is Atau Tanaka's computer translation of Nick Ut's Pulitzer famous prize-winning photograph of the Vietnamese victim of an American napalm attack. His programs interpreted a spectral scan of the photograph, with the vertical axis becoming frequency in the remarkable piece "9m14s Over Vietnam."
It is both the end of the decade and the end of the century, so record companies are trying to honor this century with as many collections as they can. I'm not quite sure how this music directly relates to music and/or media in the 20th century but it is a fine collection of some of the most innovative current electronic music artists. This is a two-cd set which features 20 tracks from Japanese artists like Aube, Ryoji Ikeda, Koji Marutani and Toru Yamanaka; American composers and professors like Andrew Lagowski, Maggi Payne and Thomas Dimuzio plus others from around the world. The highlights include 'Ouroboros 7,' a field recording from French artist Eric La Casa, 'Ccdeinnoorsttu' (dedicated to the Coca Cola Company) by M.Behrens, and '9m14s Over Vietnam' by Atau Tanaka. Along with the 2 discs in a visually appealing package is a little booklet with brief media/invention/event 'highlights' of the 20th Century. A good package, nice concept and a lot of music for a reasonable price. I'm impressed with the selections from the artists, as they're all well done tracks rather than the typical throw-aways for the comps. — Jon Whitney
Soundscape before 2000
" Dai paesaggi sonori del compositore americano a quelli affrescati dai sei nomi trionfantori nell'edizione '99 del festival "Soundscapes be)for(e 2000". L'omonima doppia compilation su etichetta Ssc/Staalplaat presenta tutte le composizioni che hanno ottenuto riconoscimenti dai componenti della giuria internazionale nell'appositata sezione. Di grande fascino i contributi del francese Eric La Casa, materico assemblaggio di field recordings atto a riferire la realtà (non solo) acustica e la complessità musicale del mondo naturale, della tedesca Sibylle Pomorin, ugualmente evocativa nel combinare registrazioni sul campo, reperti etnologici, voci e suoni strumentali (flauto basso, percussioni) in un omaggio alla cultura azteca, e dell'olandese Karel Von Kleist, ritratto acustico di un'area suburbana di Amsterdam dove i fragori della moderna (in)civiltà hanno rimpiazzato suoni più antichi e amichevoli; meno convincenti quelli di Francisco López, una consistente porzione del già edito "La Selva", e degli australiani Robert Iolini e Philip Ma, artificiosa trasmutazione elettroacustica di materiali raccolti per le vie di Hong Kong."
NICOLA CATALANO, Rumore, 2000
double album, distributed through Staalplaat, contains the prize winners
from a festival of the same name held in Amsterdam November
1999. To quote
the liner notes 'a soundscape is about arranging sound. The soundscape composer
creates his own ideal world in which there is space for the listener … [it]
deals especially with the phenomenological aspects of sound', which is what
we have here - five closely worked sound worlds.
Eric La Casa presents a classical, sophisticated soundpiece in 'Les pierres du seuil' which lists all the sources, such as 'wind through young fir trees (Epeigne-les-bois, France)' or 'rain, dim flow, taking shelter under a small covered market (Le Semnoz, Haute-Savoie, France)' or 'crumpling cardboard wrappings (Paris)'. There doesn't seem to be much processing, but La Casa rather depends on finely judged layerings of the parts - the early crackling, creaking trees and dripping rain combined other sounds such as the sheep bells or voices over, gives way to a longer, subtle middle section where sounds bubble and crackle at the borders of consciousness briefly interrupted by some laughing children. Another explosion of watery sounds before again it settles into quieter reflexive sounds, and ends with cars passing on a distant road as birds sing in the field. Here, as with most works reviewed, the listener shifts between a focus on the naturalistic elements and the musical form of the whole.
Ignore the cover of this… These are organic, naturalistic works where the computer may have aided composition, but is not driving it. The five are varied works which together make one of the best compilations around: a great set if you are interested in soundscapes.
firstname.lastname@example.org & http://ampersandetc.virtualave.net/ampersand.html
Ampersand Etcetera - Volume 2 Number 3