Jules Vasylenko, saxophone, FUMPH!
A Distro Album from [Pro]-[Anti] Press,
2018. 80 minutes!
$10 + $3 s/h.
The variety of sounds created by Jules Vasylenko using a saxophone, often as if it
were a voice, is truly incredible: whispering, fluttering, grunting, buzzing,
vocalizations, talkative, percussive, moaning, fog horning, barking, muttering,
chirping, bees swarming, wind, trumpeting, squealing, wavering, quacking,
squeaking, loud, soft and everything in between, plus many indescribable sounds.
What makes this recording great is that all of this coheres into a single voice, a
voice of an enhanced human consciousness telling a complex and deeply
emotional and understood story. I've never heard anything quite like it. Recorded
live at Roanoke's Art Rat Studio, the recording, by Tomislav Butcovic, is up front,
clear, fully professional, and with none of the deficits of live recording. Released
in a limited edition, you better get this while you can!
John M. Bennett
Christina Vantzou & John Also Bennett
ZIN TAYLOR'S “THOUGHTS OF A DOT AS IT TRAVELS A SURFACE”
LP from Forced Exposure
Download from Bandcamp
More than just an example of blatant nepotism, I have to express my pleasure in this beautiful new recording by Christina Vantzou and my son, John Also Bennett. It consists of a sounding or interpretation of a visual work, a drawing by Zin Taylor on the walls of a gallery. Unlike Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, which is a suite of pieces, Vantzou and Bennett's work is a single long piece, (though several tracks are listed), evolving through numerous changes. It owes something to ambient music, but is much more developed and meaty than most such work, perhaps due to its grounding in a large visual artwork. The music involves the use of electronics, flute, and piano, and is, amazingly, a recording of a single live collaborative performance, a performance which fully engages one's attention, and rewards repeated listenings.
This work is a prime example of the interconnectivity and collaborative nature of the arts; for example, the fact that much sound poetry derives from asemic or visual poetry texts, which are sounded or performed as if they were scores, a practice much engaged in today in avant-garde literary, Fluxus, and performance venues today.
“Thoughts of a Dot as it Travels a Surface” is a beautifully produced high-quality LP with a large fold-out print of the art on which the performance is based, and ample textual discussions on the inner sleeve. Don't pass this one up!
Editor's Note: this article on Thoughts of a Dot as it Travels a Surface was originally published at EC on April 12, 2018 in the now obsolete/discontinued REVIEWS section. I have re-published it here on John's page by his request.
JOHN M. BENNETT