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Frisch, Johannes / Ralf Wehowsky: Which Head You're Dancing In? (Monotype)

Deconstructed sounds from Ralf Wehowsky (RLW) on electronics & Johannes Frisch on double bass, citing Ornette Coleman's "Free Jazz" album as an (abstract?) influence, using noise, glitch, acoustics and jump-cut compositional styles that surprise but won't make you want to dance.
 

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product information:


UPC: 5908310927992

Label: Monotype
Catalog ID: mono082
Squidco Product Code: 20199

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2014
Country: Poland
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold 3 Panels
Recorded in Eggenstein, Germany in 2012 to 2014.


Personnel:

Johannes Frisch-doublebass

Ralf Wehowsky-all other instruments and sound transformations

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track listing:


1. Acid Breakdown 4:33

2. Crisis In Space 5:00

3. Dub Clap Move 10:43

4. Let's Now Interrupt For A Commercial 4:14

5. Skies Of Guantanamo 1:58

6. Stutter Train Stoppage 2:30

7. Theme For A Skyscraper 6:12

8. Which Cloud You Are Coming From? 8:25
Related Categories of Interest:


Electro-Acoustic
Organized Sound and Sample Based Music
Stringed Instruments
Duo Recordings
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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"The word "dance" does not come to mind when I see Ralf Wehowsky's name, so I was intrigued by this collaboration from its title alone. Johannes Frisch is not known for working with electronic beats either, so the fact that they appear here in anything but a conventional sense is not that surprising. Between Wehowsky's electronics and Frisch's double bass, shards of dance music appear but extremely deconstructed, and blended up with free jazz and electronic experimentalism. Both artists have cited Ornette Coleman's landmark Free Jazz album as one of this album's major influences.

"Crisis in Space" features some more conventional jazz rhythms and plucked double bass moments, but vintage synth sound effects and clattering sounds make it a different matter entirely. Wehowsky's trademark disjointed, jump edit compositional style features heavily, but the overall mood is far lighter than I usually would expect from him. The electronic sounds appear frequently on the opening "Shutter Train Stoppage," resembling 8 bit video game noises and lo-fi techno being destroyed by a malfunctioning hard drive. "Which Cloud Are You Coming From" also has the duo working with skittering, severely processed electronic beats in perhaps the closest approach to glitch techno the two get. With this paired with Frisch's sweeping bowed bass, the blend of melody and noise works excellently.

"Dub Clap Move" also sees the duo using more straight forward rhythmic elements, but in a jerky stop/start structure peppered with weirdly treated strings and harsh synth bursts, resulting in the most chaotic piece on the album. "Acid Breakdown" might not heavily feature rhythms, but is no less boisterous than the rest, featuring dense and aggressive passages of processed sound. "Acid" might fit in both techno and jazz as a subgenre, but here I feel the reference is more fittingly drug related.

The duo do not focus exclusively on the heavy dense moments however, and a few of these pieces are as sparse and minimalist as Wehowsky's solo work as RLW. "Theme For A Skyscraper" displays some conventionally bowed bass sounds, but through processed fragments and heavy use of silence, it feels very in line with his other work. "Let's Now Interrupt For A Commercial" is similar as well, featuring a heavier use of interference like digital sounds and big open gaps of silence that could fit in to any of his solo albums.

The "dance" part of this album's title seems to be a facetious use of the term, as the thought of anyone being able to dance to this material is pretty absurd. The "head" part, however, makes perfect sense, because no matter if the material is rapidly chaotic mangled techno or stripped down electro acoustic experimentation, the sound of this album is undoubtedly cerebral."-Craeig Dunton, bashwashed.com


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