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V.A. (VARIOUS ARTISTS) (COMPILATIONS) - \'Музыкальное Приношение\' (Musical Offering) -

Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: Cold Spring CSR326CD
Release Year: 2023
Note: historic recordings (1971) made with the fascinating Soviet AMS synth (you can 'draw' music wiithout notes) from contemporary Russian composers ALFRED SCHNITTKE, EDWARD ARTIEMIEV (Tarkowsky film music was produced on the ANS! ), E. DENISOV, O. BOLUSHKIN, and SOFIA GUBAIDULINA: *MUSICAL OFFERING demonstrates a 'musical' machine unlike any other and has long fascinated cutting edge, modern electronic composers, notably COIL and THE ANTI GROUP (TAGC) / CLOCK DVA..." - re-issue of Russian LP 1991!!
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €15.00

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Available on CD (or any other format) for the first time outside USSR, five Soviet composers perform their works on the legendary ANS synthesizer.

Recorded in 1971, "MUSICAL OFFERING" is 6 tracks (42 mins) of experiments on the unique machine by: Eduard Artemiev (2 tracks), Oleg Buloshkin, Sofia Gubaidulina, Edison Denisov, and Alfred Schnittke.

"MUSICAL OFFERING" demonstrates a 'musical' machine unlike any other and has long fascinated cutting edge, modern electronic composers, notably COIL and THE ANTI GROUP COMMUNICATIONS (TAGC) / CLOCK DVA, that have both released recordings utilising the ANS.

Try to imagine a score sounding by itself without a conductor; an orchestra without musical instruments. This magic is possible by using the musical ANS synthesizer. Created by Soviet scientist Evgeny Murzin over the course of 20 years, ANS is an instrument with which a composer can not only create but also draw their music without notes. You can see the twinkling of different lamps, the rotation of grooved glass discs... The drawings on the glass are 'sounding notes'. To listen to the drawn picture, press the button and a wonderful transformation will begin.

Inside the ANS are five rotating glass discs with 144 tones printed (by hand) on each one. Light is projected through the discs and onto photovoltaic cellbank which converts the light into electricity and sends signals to the ANS's amplifiers and bandpass filters. The ANS can generate 720 tones this way and, unlike a human musician, play them all at the same time.

Murzin dedicated his photoelectronic apparatus to Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin, hence the name ANS. Scriabin, the creator of the 'Poem of Ecstasy', and a famous explorer of synesthesia, used in his works a highly chromatic, new type of harmonic style designed to express his beliefs, views and wishes. Soviet music lovers will already know recordings made on ANS from Tarkovsky's films Solaris, The Mirror, and Stalker, Konchalovsky's film Siberiade, and others.

Presented in a digipak with the new artwork by Abby Helasdottir (who also created the compelling promo video), complimenting the ANS process perfectly.

Officially licensed from Russian state label Melodiya.

Watch promo video (YouTube): bit.ly/Musical-Offering

Copyright © Ц ВТПО "Фирма Мелодия" (Melodiya)
All-Union Recording Studio. Recorded in 1971.

Recording supervised by Юрий Богданов
Mastered by Martin Bowes at The Cage

Track listing:

1. OLEG BULOSHKIN - \'Sacrament\' (3:32)
2. SOFIA GUBAIDULINA - \'Vivente-Non Vivente (Alive And Dead)\' (10:44)
3. EDUARD ARTEMIEV - \'Mosaic\' (4:05)
4. EDUARD ARTEMIEV - \'Twelve Looks At The World Of Sound\' (12:53)
5. EDISON DENISOV - \'Birds\' Singing\' (5:04)
6. ALFRED SCHNITTKE - \'Stream\' (5:57)


"A new batch of Cold Spring CDs, and I must say... At least with one of them, they stole my mathematic sound nerdish heart. "Musical Offering" is a sampler with Russian composers using the ANS, probably entirely up to its limits. Two tracks by Eduard Artemiev and one track each by Oleg Buloshkin, Sofia Gubaidulina, Edison Denisov and Alfred Schnittke. I only knew about Artemiev on this list because of his movie soundtracks. So to hear his work without a movie and, of course, images of empty landscapes, a brutalist-themed forgotten society and demise and a void enter my head, but fair is fair: all images were in colour. Nothing bleak or grey but the richness of the ANS is all over the place.
So for those who don't know what an ANS is all about, it's a Russian synthesizer designed over 20 years by Evgeny Murzin, and there is only one. It works with drawings on glass plates and devices that transform light into voltages, and those voltages create sounds. The glass discs spin, and well ... Wiki / YouTube is your friend here. Many artists have worked with the ANS, including Coil, The Anti Group Communications. Yes, [law-rah] also used original sounds from the ANS on their split with Cisfinitum (released on Fario). Maybe working on that release is the reason why I have a personal
weakness for this machine. I just couldn't get over how rich the sounds were that we got to use. Sure: A completely different thing than Coil being in the museum and drawing on the discs and us 'just' working with some recordings one of the museum guys did for us. Yet still ... I was impressed then, and I'm still impressed now.
For this disc, I am keeping the review smallish. Why? Because you already know if you are a) interested in neo-classical compositions by Russian composers. If you are, you will get this release and not be disappointed. It's as simple as that. If you are b) a nerd who loves different forms of synthesis like me, this album is one to consider. Because it's very varied and shows a lot of the ANS in 'its original environment': Russian composers on a Russian synth, and if you are c) curious about composition techniques, this will break your mind. Because from the ritualistic rhythmic parts in "Sacrament" (by Buloshkin), the 'voices' in "Vivente-Non Vivente" (by Artemiev) and the birds and frogs in "Birds Singing" (by Denisov), can you tell what is the origin of the sound? Is it a bird? Is it a recording? Or is it super ANS?
For me, it's not one of those reasons to love this album, and it's d) all of the above." [BW / Vital Weekly]