13 November 2010

New Minimalist Masterpieces Unearthed

Have gotten hold of two never-released-before lost classics of underground Minimalist pieces: a lavishly produced set of a CD and a book by Die Schachtel - Catherine Christer Hennix's The Electric Harpischord and a vinyl release from Yik Yak by Yoshi Wada's(whom I have mentioned in one of my earlier blog entries) son, Tashi Wada, entitled, Alignment.

Unlike the now populist Minimalist works of Steve Reich, John Adams and Philip Glass, the two works here still ooze vibes aplenty of the Other: for Hennix, the heady days of the 1960s and 1970s, and the staunched influences of Sri Pandit Pran Nath, one of the key gurus of such Minimalist masters like Terry Riley and La Monte Young. For details of the story of Hennix, you may want to check out The Wire, issue 320 (October 2010). To me it is another slab of deep listening hymn which gently pulsates through the listener and affecting him/her profoundly if given the right context.

Tashi Wada, on the other hand, is right on with his understanding on Just Intonation (check out Tony Conrad, one of the vital proponents). The violin makes him even closer to Conrad it seems but the resemblance somehow stops there. The two side-long works sound punky at times, like some private press vinyl press of a home-made composer who digested fully the principles behind Just Intonation and in a sitting blast out these two pieces of drone-swirls.

Do yourself a favour, check them out. By the way, Minimalist works work best on vinyl, not CD or digital.

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