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ZOVIET FRANCE - Tables are Turning

Format: do-LP
Label & Cat.Number: Soleilmoon Recordings SOL 182
Release Year: 2013
Note: soundtrack to 'Designer Body', a curious dance-theatre work by 'ballatLORENT' that toured in England 2008/2009, exploring the relationship between humans and their clothing; cover consists of a deluxe dual-layer green satin bag with fold-over flap with elements sewn by hand; a phantastic release! lim. 400, no re-pressing - video-clip at : vimeo.com/45634424
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €58.00


More Info

"Somewhere in the rainy, misty forests of the Pacific Northwest of America, three ladies have the unlikely task of sewing together the packaging for a new album by :zoviet*france:.

:zoviet*france: are releasing The Tables Are Turning on compact disc and double LP through Soleilmoon Recordings. The music was composed as the soundtrack to Designer Body, a dance that toured England from 2008 to 2009. The work explores the transformational relationship between humans and the clothing they wear. Seven dancers, performing on continuously rotating plinths, slowly remove layers of their costumes, revealing the sensuous nude bodies beneath. The music accompanying the dancers is by turns dense and moody, then lyrical and soaring, underlining the mounting vulnerability of the dancers as they undress.

Liv Lorent, balletLORENT's artistic director and choreographer, spoke with Kelly Apter, writer for The List, saying At the beginning, the body is the most designed it can be. Theyre wearing hats, coats, heavy costumes and make-up all the man-made and artificial things we do to disguise ourselves everyday. Then, over 50 minutes, we take it all away. And because there are several layers, theres a real sense of metamorphosis.

The members of :zoviet*france:, who prefer to remain annonymous, write We've known Liv Lorent for a long time. When she started to conceive 'Designer Body', which she wanted to be a hybrid of contemporary dance and performance art, she decided that an unconventional performance needed an unconventional soundtrack. The composition of the soundtrack and the choreography evolved alongside each other so it became a dialogue between Liv and ourselves. The main inspiration that we took from the production's concept was rotation; throughout the one hour performance, the dancers are located on turntables that turn continuously, at varying speeds and changing direction. We mirrored this in much of the soundtrack, with circular and rotating sounds.

Both formats (CD and double LP) are presented in a deluxe dual-layer green satin bag with fold-over flap. The letters ZF are hand-stitched into the flap in white thread, and a two-sided color insert printed on sturdy cardstock completes the package. There are 400 LPs and 600 compact discs in the first edition. The LP, with music on three of the four sides of the records, will go out of print when the initial pressing sells out." [label info]

www.soleilmoon.com


"With hindsight it is of course not easy to tell when you first heard something, let's say the music of :Zoviet*France:. I think, in my case, this must have been at my friend Peter, when staying over one night after a concert, and he would proceed to play me records, as that was the kind of stuff he was into, unlike me, who was more into cassettes (and waking up, always, to the sound of 'Erector' by Whitehouse). I am however pretty sure I knew the name before as their records where sold by the then existing mail order of Ding Dong Records. Slowly over the years in the mid 80s I got to hear and see those crazy packed records and was immersed by them. In 1990 or so I saw them play live, in the UK, where Peter's band was due to play also, in a multiple day event. I think one night just had :Zoviet*France:, and they played for what I remember as two hours in a seated theatre. Their extended sound tapestries of acoustic sounds, lots of electronics went on and on, from mood to mood.
A bit later I remember them playing at the Dutch radio station, VPRO in this case, for a recording that later turned out to be 'Mort Aux Vaches'. They were downstairs fiddling with the soundcheck and I was up in the control room. 'You can start the recording', one member said, and after 90 minutes the DAT was full. One of the radio people went down and told them it might be time to stop, which they did with a quick fade out. Now I could have been disappointed by that, being cut out of such beautiful music, but I wasn't. Seeing them playing around with the simplest of means, tea cups, flutes, and electronic devices was great. Following the extreme productivity of the 80s, there were some releases in the 90s, and in the 00s? One CD, and one 12"/10"/7"if I recall well. Zoviet*France, since many years a duo do play live and share live recordings easily but for whatever reason it never comes to a release that easily. Maybe they foresee that physical releases may disappear, maybe their sometimes complex packaging proofs to be difficult (this new one comes in a 'dual layer green satin bag with fold over flap') but more realistic: :Zoviet*France: are no longer part of the world of concerts, CDs and such like. For quite some time now they create soundtracks for dance companies and performances, and you don't sell CDs at those gigs (I guess, actually). 'The Tables Are Turning' was created for Ballet Lorent in 2008 and I am sure this is not a live recording, but I am also not sure how it works. There are twelve pieces here, quite distinctive pieces, so maybe these are used in this order, no breaks in between or maybe in some other configuration. There is an interesting distinction between the live releases by :Zoviet*France: and their studio work. A typical live CD has one or two pieces in which everything flows right into each other, like an endless stream of subconscious sounds. In their studio work they perform much shorter pieces which occasionally have an odd start or ending , like it's being cut out of a bigger whole. In the dance piece, the dancers are located on turntables - hence the title - and the revolving sound, the looping sound is something that returns in the music. From spacious and melodic in 'Prophecy Loved A Child' to the processed music boxes of 'Green Air' to the gritty organ opening of 'The Grit In The Cloud'. In the past :Zoviet*France: would refer to this as 'songlets', as opposed to real songs, but the shorter ditties here like 'The Fire Of Revolution', 'Sandbox', and 'A Moment Of Film' hark back the best days of 'Popular Soviet Songs' or 'Lohland'. I played this pretty much everyday for a week, and decided this is a great :Zoviet*France: release; not their best, which would be for me 'Mohnomishe', 'Shouting At The Ground', 'Digilogue' and 'What Is Not True', but it's up there with pretty much everything else I know by them, and which is a lot. This christmas will be spend with an entire day of :Zoviet*France: music." [FdW/Vital Weekly]