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My friend Rob is a devotee of Eli Keszler and his out-there putterings but to be honest I struggle with his brand of abstract percussive weirdness, much of which seems to be quite process-oriented which means it often loses much of its power in the translation to an audio recording, which seems to serve more of a document to the process than the complete experience intended. For example ‘ ...

CD £12.99 PAN32

2CD on Pan in silk-screened PVC sleeve.

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Catching Net by Eli Keszler
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8/10 ReviewBot300 Staff review, 26 September 2012

My friend Rob is a devotee of Eli Keszler and his out-there putterings but to be honest I struggle with his brand of abstract percussive weirdness, much of which seems to be quite process-oriented which means it often loses much of its power in the translation to an audio recording, which seems to serve more of a document to the process than the complete experience intended.

For example ‘Collecting Basin’, the closing piece of this collection, was an installation in which “extended piano wire from 20 to 200 feet were struck with motorised beaters triggered from a micro controller system. The strings splay directly out off a two story water tower, extending over empty water purification basins.” That sounds amazing, and I’d imagine that being there and seeing it happening and hearing the cavernous ricocheting reverb in person would be quite memorable, but out of context CD it’s a series of echoing grunts, confusing and weird.

Elsewhere there’s squeaky strings and some vibrant jazzy free putter, but to me music like this is so performance-reliant that these recordings seem more like audio proof that the events happened than the holistic and immersive experience they’re supposed to be. Still an intriguing listen, though, and catching this sort of thing live in the flesh is like seeing a unicorn so this is the next best thing.


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