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Cooper, Lindsay: Sahara Dust (Intakt)


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product information:

UPC: 7619942502928

Label: Intakt
Catalog ID: INT029
Squidco Product Code: 1732

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 1993
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: Jewel Tray
Recorded August 3-5, 1992 at Radio Studio Zurich


Lindsay Cooper-sopranino saxophone, bassoon

Phil Minton-voice, trumpet

Elvira Plenar-piano, synthesiser

Dean Brodrick-keyboards, accordion, bassoon

Paul Jayasinha-trumpet, cello, wind synthesiser

Robyn Schulkowsky-percussion (marimba, timpani, gong, small drum kit, tuned metal discs, various small percussion instruments

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track listing:

1. Sarah Dust , Pt. 1 12:08

2. Sarah Dust, Pt. 2 6:15

3. Sarah Dust, Pt. 3 8:23

4. Sarah Dust, Pt. 4 10:49

5. Sarah Dust, Pt. 5 6:19
Related Categories of Interest:

European Improv, Free Jazz & Related
Song Based Music
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Before April-2006
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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Sahara Dust is Lindsay Cooper and Robyn Archer's collaborative score for a music theater production based on the Gulf War, and was recorded in 1992. Her accomplices number five and include vocalist and trumpeter Phil Minton. Scored in five movements, each with a textual element that serves as a meditation for the music, Cooper, who has long scored collaborative projects involving film, television, voices, dances, and theater, has outdone herself this time. The brooding score which slows the vocalist into Archer's words about millions of people coming out of their homes to feel specks of hand interspersed with the raindrops as their televisions sets drone on about a conflict happening somewhere "over there," is comprised of elements of cabaret, jazz, blues, classical and Middle Eastern music. Tonally Cooper goes for a series of colors that walk the line cracking apart all notions of "popular" and "art" song. The story, if it can be called that (meditation is more like it) unfolds at a gradual, unhurried pace with all of the instrumentalists being allowed to solo and add shape and depth to her intricate and somber but deeply beautiful score. There is a harmonic sensibility at work here, which is staggering, as Cooper places the quality of Minton's voice as a central element in her score, and the manner in which she balances the various tonalities from accordions, bassoons, cello, and synthesizers. The result is a stirring, moving political and emotional tour de force that is easy on the ears and taxes the heart to resolve contradictions in the way we perceive the world. No one can ask more of a composer."-Thom Jurek, All Music Guide

Artist Biographies:

"Lindsay Cooper (3 March 1951 18 September 2013) was an English bassoon and oboe player, composer and political activist. Best known for her work with the band Henry Cow, she was also a member of Comus, National Health, News from Babel and David Thomas and the Pedestrians. She collaborated with a number of musicians, including Chris Cutler and Sally Potter, and co-founded the Feminist Improvising Group. She wrote scores for film and TV and a song cycle Oh Moscow which was performed live around the world in 1987. She also recorded a number of solo albums, including Rags (1980), The Gold Diggers (1983) and Music For Other Occasions (1986).

Cooper was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in the late 1970s, but did not disclose it to the musical community until the late 1990s when her illness prevented her from performing live. In September 2013, Cooper died from the illness at the age of 62, 15 years after her retirement."

-Wikipedia (

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"Phil Minton comes from Torquay. He played trumpet and sang with the Mike Westbrook Band in the early 60s- Then in dance and rock bands in Europe for the later of part of the decade. He returned to England in 1971, rejoining Westbrook and was involved in many of his projects until the mid 1980's.

For most of the last forty years, Minton has been working as a improvising singer in lots of groups, orchestras, and situations, all over the place. Numerous composers have written music especially for his extended vocal techniques. He has a quartet with Veryan Weston, Roger Turner and John Butcher, and ongoing duos, trios and quartets with above and many other musicians.

Since the eighties, His Feral Choir, where he voice-conducts workshops and concerts for anyone who wants to sing, has performed in over twenty countries."

-Phil Minton Website (

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