Aaron Einbond - Cities (Vinyl LP)
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Label: NMC Recordings
Cat No: MM03
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 8th November 2019
ArtistsMatilde Meireles (recordist, sound artist)
The kind of problem a city is (2016) for two percussionists, two keyboard players, and electronics is Einbond’s portrait of long-term collaborators Yarn/Wire, focusing upon their shared history together and relationship to their hometown of New York. It takes an approach of radical personalization not only to the musical materials, sampled with the members of the ensemble and used to compose the instrumental score, but also to recorded interviews with the musicians about their experiences and memories of the city. The interviews are complemented with excerpts read by the musicians from Jane Jacobs’s urban-planning classic The Death and Life of Great American Cities, and both led Einbond to corresponding locations to collect field recordings. These materials are the sources for delicate transcriptions, using the timbres of small percussion, melodica, mbira, kalimba, and piano to recast the minute coloristic and rhythmic details of the urban scenes and texts. The result could be heard as a performed installation, a radio play, a sonic documentary, a personalized map, or pocket theater that asks the unanswerable question of what sounds like home.
London Scenes (2019) is a journey of discovery through field recordings, using Virginia Woolf’s 1931-32 essays series “The London Scene” as a guide. Woolf’s texts inform the sonic narrative, while the field recordings become a tool to start a conversation, collectively navigate the city, and critically engage with place. Today’s London scenes would be both familiar and foreign to Woolf: from the polyglot crowds of Oxford Circus, John Lewis lobby, Keats House, and Greenwich Pier to an Ashura Day celebration at Marble Arch. The work redefines compositional collaboration through an iterative process in which Einbond’s field recordings are revisited through Meireles’s sound design and synthesised sound. Both are joined by an international cast of speakers who animate Woolf’s texts with diverse accents and experiences as rich as London itself.
multi.modal is a new London based record label that muddies the borders between improvisation, field recording and composition. Each release on the label will triangulate these artistic spaces and reflect contemporary music practices, which tend to be collaborative and multimodal. multi.modal is curated by composers and artists Claudia Molitor and Tullis Rennie, based at SPARC (Sound Practice and Research @ City), a research centre at the Music Department of City, University of London.
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