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LABFIELD - Fishforms

Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: Bottrop-Boy B-BOY 031
Release Year: 2008
Note: stunning debut-album with evocative "impro-experimental-drone" from new Swedish/Norwegian duo of DAVID STACKENÄS (FIRE! ORCHESTRA, etc.) and INGAR ZACH (HUNTSVILLE, etc.)
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €13.00

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Ein neuer Name für die Impro-Drone-Szene, dieses skandinavische Duo, die mit indischen "Sruti" und "Saranghi"-Boxen wunderbar füllige Drones erzeugen (klingt nach Harmonium oder endlosen Sitar-Loops), die sich in endlosen Wellen und Obertönen fortbewegen, dabei aber sehr nah und konkret erscheinen. Subtile Bass-Dumm Percussion wird eingesetzt, (was meist auch einen low-freq Drone ergibt, der aber unruhiger schwingt ) und in Stück 2 ist eine Folk-artige Akustikgitarre zu hören, ... sehr schönes Debut (von zwei etablierten Leuten aus der Impro-/Jazz Szene)!

" 'Phanta Rhei’ - everything flows. Whatever else might happen, life hurtles on and everything follows its natural course. Music is also subject to these ineluctable laws. While often breaking the mould, when everything is in its right place, the music follows its own course. As it does in the little experimental cabins of Laboratory Field, or LabField for short. This Scandinavian monster collective consisting of David Stackenäs (guitars, electronics) and Ingar Zach (percussion) knows exactly how to manipulate sound. At the same time, Ingar Zach is also creating a big stir with three-piece kindred spirits Huntsville.
Not fussed about getting their hands dirty, Stackenäs and Zach dig for sounds of gold with successful results. Sound waves emanate from their instruments slowly. This unstoppable flood of sound is not distinguished by brute force but rather by its boundless subtlety and inventiveness. The listener will completely find themselves submerged by an overwhelming stream. Bottrop-Boy is proud to release LabField’s first sound experiments onto the world.
Swedish guitarist Stackenäs and Norwegian percussionist Zach are known names in the European improvisation scene. They previously worked together in three-piece TRI DIM, together with saxophonist Håkon Kornstad. Two years later, Stackenäs and Zach decided to work as a duo, deciding on a radically different course. Improvisation, sound art, minimal music and drones are fused to form a completely unique style of performing. Zach plays, among other instruments, the unique electronic sruti and saranghi boxes. This is music that evolves quietly and often refers to the dronescapes of free improv pioneers such as AMM. The sounds which Stackenäs manages to conjure up from his guitars are unprecedented: softly humming, viciously rattling and intensely meditative. Zach answers these sounds with the hypnotic pulse of his bass drum and electronic sruti box. This is improvisational music replete with sounds branching in unpredictable directions and slowly smouldering drones. An aural rite of passage fit for these modern times." [label info]

"....The 24 minute opener “Gin” is built around the sustained presence of Zachs sruti and saranghi boxes – electronic facsimiles of Indian harmonium and fiddle, respectively. With these blissed out vibrations, augmented by bells and the sparse isolated booms of a bass drum, it has the feel of a slowly unfolding devotional ritual, but it’s saved from descending into ersatz spiritual tourism by Stäckenas’s jarring embellishments. Even without seeing him at work, it’s probably safe to assume Stäckenas is operating out of the Keith Rowe school of unconventionally manipulated tabletop electric guitar, producing grating textures resembling the hum and drill of an overworked air conditioning unit or the piercing whine of a wineglass rim.
For “Rin”, he switches to acoustic, with simple strumming phasing in and out of sync in left and right channels and a three note melody picked out on slide guitar – creating a satisfying mash of Country, raga and contemporary music that recalls Zach’s other trio, Huntsville. But, with the throbbing, sruti-drenched “Showa”, the album returns to its core mission to explore the bottomless reaches of drone, discovering dark, euphoric realms along the way." [Daniel Spicer / THE WIRE]

"... On the risk of being accused (again) that I heard this only once, I must say that the work he produced as LabField with Stackenäs is great. Absolutely great. Zach plays bass drum, percussion, electronic scruti-box and electronic saranghi-box and Stackenäs plays acoustic guitars, resonator guitar, preparations and low budget electronics. With a background in improvisation you would expect careful, quiet, intimate playing - and in a way they do that. But it's not tender, soft or hardly outspoken. I suggest putting the volume up and get immersed by their wall of machine sounds. They play their instruments using all sorts of motors, fans or other mechanized instruments to create a natural resonating yet acoustic sound. Especially in 'Gin', the opening track which spans two-third of the entire CD this works wonderfully well. Dense to bone (mm, that's no expression)... dense like clouds, like being in a factory and one hears all the machines humming at once. Not deafening loud, but well constructed, balanced, varied, not from one point of the factory, but one has the feeling of walking about, hearing new aspects of the machines or new combination of the machines. By contrast 'Gin', the shortest piece, is a like bridge between that and 'Showa', soft tinkling guitars and percussive sounds, until things start to heat up again for the final piece. Hardly improvised sounding at all, this is sophisticated drone music of an outstanding order." [FdW / Vital Weekly]