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- Nature Data by Jennifer Walshe
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I'll never quite get over the time we listened to Mike Patton's voice manipulation CD on Tzadik once. Gibbering, howliing, screaming, whispering-in-tongues, clucking, grunting & possibly vomiting on dead babies - he probably did all these things and more. I then thought he was totally taking the piss for whistling the final hurdle of the CD until someone pointed out Mike had gone home and it was this gale outside trying to finger our window frames a bit too lasciviously. Laughing stock I was. Jennifer Walshe is another voice manipulator as well as a brilliant sound-artist. Her stuff is in turns fascinating, mildly distressing & side splittingly funny. She's very talented. 30 years ago she'd probably have been bundled away by men in white coats for emitting this kind of gibbering "human song" which does rather separate her from the majority of the pack! I'm so glad she isn't in a padded room though and is free to express her inner-jungle to the outside world. The way she clicks on & off a tape recording of a documentary about noisy mating amphibians & other such biological wonderment to splice up one of the earlier pieces is wicked. This is probably the most interesting CD i'll hear this month. Jennifer has a pretty unique range & a wonderfully quirky attitude to music making - this CD is stuffed with many brief & sonically intriguing passages, it has these random overlapping spoken-word monologues mixed with stunning field recordings & found-sound. There's some unbelievable frequencies she attains throughout this CD as well, possibly manipulated in parts by technology but i'm convinced this is mostly pure voice. Unbelievably curious....
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