The story of how Viento was made by Lawrence English isn't your normal, three-days-in-the-studio-listening-to-The-Beatles-and-eating-crisps kinda story. On a trip visiting Antarctica with the Argentine Antarctic Division, the group make a pit-stop at Rio Gallegos which escalates into staying in the Patagonian capital for a few days. What to do but go around recording the diverse sounds caused by the wind on various objects - signs, abandoned buildings, trees and the like. Yet more wind sound was recorded at the Argentine bases in Antarctica during blizzards and temperatures of -40 degrees. It is from these recordings that Viento is created. I think even being in the studio with Phil Spector sounds more appealing.
The LP is cut to metal and then pressed on a whopping 200 gram LP for the clearest sound. It’s in a letter pressed sleeve with visuals complementing the harsh, austere sound of the record. Limited to 400 copies.
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- TAIGA 29
- TAIGA 29 / Ltd 200g vinyl LP in letterpress sleeve on TAIGA records. Edition of 400 copies
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- Viento by Lawrence English
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The creation of ‘Viento’ involved sound artist Lawrence English venturing into extreme climates, into conditions which are the polar opposite of Australia where he resides. Indeed a trip to Antarctica where temperatures as low as -40 didn’t stop the man from capturing the sonics of this harsh and unforgiving part of our planet. I’m surprised his equipment didn’t totally freeze up on him! Thankfully he thawed out on his return, using field recordings captured from his adventure to compose the two pieces beautifully presented here by TAIGA records on weapons grade 200 gram vinyl housed in a classy letter-pressed sleeve.
Both pieces effortlessly transport sthe listener into a stark and brutally windswept white landscape. The howling blizzard winds captured with remarkable clarity, the sound of metal road signs clanging, fences creaking and blowing in the wind. Despite the intensity of the arctic winds the overall effect it has on me is a calming tranquil one. English cleverly layers the field recordings, effectively creating an artificial moment in time, an unreal soundworld composed of the real. Hats off to the man for braving the elements for his art and presenting a soundworld most of us will never experience directly. Fans of Chris Watson & BJ Nilsen's 'Storm' CD should appreciate this.
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