Francisco López - the most mysterious sound artist ever, the man who has elevated aural enigma and sonic displacement to artform status - joins forces with Lawrence English, the leading figure of the Australian experimental music scene, for a puzzling CD.
What is "HB"? "It's two quite unusual found sound pieces and two musique concrète works based on each other's works," explains English. In other words, López and English each submitted to the other a field recording piece, then composed a new piece from the other guy's field recording. The result is resolutely sombre going on obscurantist: occulted birdsongs, unidentified tremors, delicate but disquieting sounds from a jungle that could be either of the wild or urban kind. This soundworld lies somewhere between mystery and mystification.
Francisco López is globally acknowledged as one of experimental music's main creative forces. Relying on a deep listening of the world around us, his music translates into a physical experience of hearing and sound. Also an installation artist and theoretician, he performs all over the world. At his concerts, the audience is usually blindfolded.
Lawrence English is a sound and visual artist, composer, critic, festival organizer, record producer (Tujiko Noriko, Tenniscoats, The Rational Academy) and label head (Room40). He explores the limits of perception and the relationship between sound and structure. His recent CD "Kiri No Oto" (Touch, 2008) has garnered critical acclaim. "HB" is his second release on Baskaru, following "For Varying Degrees of Winter" in 2007.
This is beyond all unreasonable doubt one of the best albums I ever listened to. As a painter who needs the right music to be able to work - I often prefer silence - Nachtstuecke is the kind of surrounding that is present without ever demanding attention. It works like a kind of carrier wave. I am very impressed and the next album I will add is Stephan Mathieu's 'Before Nostromo'.