Music For Guitar & Patience is a set of three pieces for processed guitar. As the title suggests, these are slowly developing pieces, and the liner notes suggest that you follow the single, simple instruction: “Listen”. Good advice. Le Berger’s work is packaged in a card sleeve with a litho print photograph and a letter-pressed insert, in an edition of 500 copies.
8/10 Laurie Staff review, 12 November 2015
To write this in the style of Phil or not to write this in the style of Phil? Will I talk endlessly about burgers and how they’re delicious and how I had one last night and it was small but really tasty with great chips? Will there be stupendous puns like ‘lettuce see how this one pans out’ and ‘I’ve got no beef with this’?
No. Because Phil is not a patient man, and this is for guitar and patience. If something doesn’t sell within the week, he snaps the disc in two because of deep-seated restlessness and anger. Bang. Smash. Snap. This record is the panacea he needs, a whole suite of elongated guitar, in equal parts smudged and fragmented, as if Phil’s smashing had been directed at a John Martyn record, the pieces of which were then arranged in a shaky line by our creative director Kim. Except that it’s Montreal man Samuel Landry that’s doing both the smashing and reassembling, also probably recording, producing and performing on the metaphorical John Martyn record. There are many plucks, but not really a rhythm, the progression of the music happening gradually, with the introduction of subtle fizz acting as the (anti-)climax of the first third. Each chime of the guitar feels more majestic than the last; when you get to the 2nd part, they hold a certain thicker richness than before, also sounding less like a guitar than some forgotten string instrument, perhaps due to some pitch shifting wizardry. There’s of course the constant blur of some lower tones, being fed by the string twangs and keeping you firmly in patience mode. Seems a shame to have to skip through it all, but such is the way of the reviewer. Stefan Christoff offers some less plucky electric guitar swells on the final third, which is alright but perhaps something we’ve all heard a lot of. Doesn’t detract too much from the whole, though.
It’s got the usual elaborate Home Normal packaging which you wouldn’t get with your Big Mac, so silently rejoice with this piece of calm.
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- Music For Guitar & Patience by Le Berger
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