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QUELLET, ISRAEL - Soni Sclavus

Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: Sub Rosa SR292
Release Year: 2009
Note: Swiss newcomer of experimental electro-acoustic
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €13.00

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Already the second album from this young Swiss composer, and like "Oppressum" its quite a beast on 11 tracks, using sounds going direct into your face, piercing pulsing organ-tunes, rumbling distorted rhythmic excesses, loopy metallic bangs, all kinds of impetuous weird sounds in between, animal sounds, backwards voices & whisphers and something like sound poetry. Very difficult to classify, "experimental" in the truest sense, after this session you maybe simply don't know if you like it or not, but it was NON-ORDINARY music like hell!

"Isral Quellet: a short biography. Born in Neuchtel, Switzerland, 1972. He worked in the psychiatric field for several years. at 16, he discovers on his own some different soundworlds, such as Miles Davis's electric era, Sun Ra, Dub, German cosmic music, Magma, Zappa and many more. In 1997, he stepped into the action and, following the advice of a sound engineer friend, bought microphones, a digital mixing board, and studio monitors. Basically, he turned part of his basement into a soundsmithing studio. That is when he started to create, out of his immediate surroundings, sound works that have little to do with what is "normally" being done. Appreciated by composer Jorge E. Campos, Quellet is supported by the Centre Pierre Schaeffer in Paris. In 2003, he contacted Sub Rosa. Three years later, he was releasing his first public recording. This present one is the second (probably of a trilogy). It explores the very common object and have a great deal with the problem of saturation and noise." [label info]

"Israel Quellet's 2nd album for Sub Rosa is not the unexpected surprise from an unknown artist that this Swiss sound-maker's debut disc was (for both us, and the label, read our review of it to see what we mean, we started off by saying "who the heck is Israel Quellet?"). But, that's because THIS time 'round, when we saw
Quellet's had a new recording coming out, we were already eager to hear it. Much like its excellent predecessor, it's about compositions
(improvisations? explorations?) limited to specific sound sources, each track featuring the use/abuse of a certain instrument or two, or perhaps a non-instrument, and to Quellet, his methods are his music, this is the focus, to the extent that the tracks are identified
thusly... For example, track 1 is "for organ and percussion". Track 3 is "for fitness rower". Track 7 is "for footsteps and knocks on stairs, and vented carbon dioxide". He makes use of organ on here quite a bit, as well as percussion and less frequently voice,
electronically treated (and in French). Actually much of this seems electronically treated, or in some way distorted, with "saturation" factoring into several of his pieces, occasionally achieving Merzbowian levels of noise (on track 6, "for percussions and saturation" especially!). All in all, this disc can be heard as one man's playful but moody, quasi-industrial homebrewed take on 20th (now 21st) century classical music. With so much somber organ and repetitive thunderous percussion, many of these tracks seem quite
ominous, you can start imagining DIY Nitsch-style "aktions" happening in Quellet's backyard.
As with Quellet's prior album, this is varied and fascinating throughout, and surprisingly listenable. Truly experimental (and
successfully so) music for curious ears made by someone with curious ears too. Recommended!!
Oh, and by the way, on our list this week there IS a cool Sub Rosa disc from a hitherto unknown (to us) artist, look for Pierre Berthet's Extended Loudspeakers, it's also AQ recommended." [Aquarius Records]