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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Percussion Group of Cincinnati on Opus One 80/81 (1981)

Percussions and percussions music are a fave of mine... at first, drums and cymbals and marimbas or vibes only music seems to be boring, unvarious and limited in textures... yet, more you deepen the listenings more you appreciate the nuances and antique moods these instruments evoke.

Some years ago I bought a strange box, a 2-records set after the suggestion of a vinyl merchant I shop once per year, a very knowledged French gentleman with an huge experience in also the most elusive stuffs.

I remember that in that occasion I bought a pristine, canvas cover first stereo pressing of Archiv Fournier Bach solo cello sonatas for a veeeeery good price... a Vega Turangalila Symphony by Messiaen, also including a 7" with Olivier Messiaen himself explaining things and facts about his opus and this, above mentioned box-set: "The Percussion Group Cincinnati - Music of Brun, May, Mosko, Yoshika, Defotis, Kramer, Peck, Wolff, Udow" on Opus One # 80/81 (1981).

Track Listing:

    Side A:
  • More Lust - Herbert Brun (13:20)

  • Para-diddle - Theodore May (6:08)

  • Side B:
  • The Cosmology of Easy Listening - Stephen Mosko (8:56)

  • Paradox III - Takayoshi Yoshioka (11:15)

  • Side C:
  • Continuous Showing - William DeFontis (5:02)

  • Five Studies on Six Notes - Jonathan D. Kramer (18:22)

  • Side D:
  • Lift Off - Russell Peck (7:46)

  • For 1, 2 or 3 People - Christian Wolff (9:18)

  • Strike - Michael Udow (2:56)

The "Group" is Allen Otte, James Culley and William Youhass and they're playing all the paraphernalia a percussionist use, from litter cans to flower vase, VW brakes, tympani, drums aand cymbals of every size and shape.

Why for God sake am I talking you about this disc?

Well, cannot say, exactly... yet, yesterday evening when shot the four sides of this TRULY seldom heard music, I had the very sensation I was the only man on the planet to listen to this music... sure this LP wasn't pressed in large quantities, but the a.m. felling wasn't coming from such a thought, someway6 collector-tinted... no, all the pieces were composed with math (the only language able to try to explain creation and its misteries) in mind and the "message" I got from these layers of assorted percussions was stars-hinting...

Sort-of "Hey, we're alone in the Zero Kelvin Universe... only thing we can do is making some "noise" for our eyes blinking-long life... just to say "I'm alive!".

It's heart beating and variations... from caveman to XXI Century Man, we never stopped making noise on logs, drums, metal bars and the like.

Maybe that's the truest reason I so much love percussions...

The 2 records-set is half-mastered at JVC and carefully engineered and pressed and edited without compression and limiting... dynamics are EXPLOSIVE - a true tracking test for both my Lumiere DST and The Peak 12" arm - and music is really enjoyable and pleasant. 

Liner notes contains very, very interesting intros and footnotes about every piece by the authors and pieces were mostly composed for the Group, so it's a very short and close to the source musical chain.

I suggest you to browse the Web for this black cover elusive box-set, folks.

You won't regret.   

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