Thursday, August 7, 2008

Janek Schaefer - Extended Play (triptych for the child survivors of war and conflict)

Janek Schaefer
Extended Play (triptych for the child survivors of war and conflict)
(06.2008, LINE)
Verdict = The kind of musical endeavors makes life worth living

The music from experimental musician/turntablist Janek Schaefer’s Etended Play, is actually derived from an extraordinarily conceived art instillation. As a pretty ginormous fan of contemporary art and instillation art in particular, Schaefer’s triptych installed as an interactive art piece is something I desperately wish I could’ve experienced in person. Unfortunately, I didn’t live in the UK last year when the piece was on display (actually, sadly, I’ve never even been across the Atlantic). You know what? Follow this link to a short video explanation of the piece from Schaefer himself:

"Extended Play" short film

“Cooooool,” right? There are obviously some fundamental differences between the music as it was embodied in the installation space the music as received in this new recorded medium and though I can go on and on about how I wished I could’ve experienced the piece in person, Extended Play is still as engaging and powerful a document of music as any I’ve heard this year. On par with (and in many ways similar to) last year’s amazing rendition of Gavin Bryars’ The Sinking of the Titanic (which featured fellow experimental turntablist and former Schaefer collaborator, Phillip Jeck), Schaefer’s Extended Play upholds an amazing sense of dignity and an uplifting air that is simply magnificent to hear. Schaefer breaks down the installation into parts on the album. The first three tracks consist of the individual parts of the triptych: Cello, Piano and Violin. Each is played for approximately ten minutes with all the variable playing habits and vinyl clicks left intact. The fourth track is a 24 minute recording of the three separate pieces combined in similar fashion and the fifth is a four minute recording of the original 1940’s folk song that was something of an inspiration for the whole endeavor. The album is simply captivating and one of the few recordings (The Sinking of the Titanic included) which can be rightly and positively described as “glacial” in its movements. Absolutely incredible.

-Mr. Thistle

1 comment:

Ranger Danger said...

great find mr. thistle. It is simply fantastic