Exposé Online banner

Various — A Bead to a Small Mouth
(Barooni BAR001, 1989/1997, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 1999-01-01

A Bead to a Small Mouth Cover art

Each track on this compilation integrates spoken text and sound manipulation, with results both mysterious and captivating. On "A New Dress" Nurse with Wound layers shifting, hypnotic metallic tones behind a crematorium worker's disturbing account of how he suffered at the hands of the Miami police as a result of his mentally disturbed wife's false accusations. Particularly unsettling is his description of highway patrolmen burning frogs with cigarettes. Graeme Revell (of SPK) and Anthony Mannix's eerie, cryptic "A Concise History of the Machine" and "The Skull" occupy a strange twilight territory suggestive of a Poe/Kafka collaboration recited by Robert Ashley during a sleep deprivation experiment. The poetic, dreamlike "A Concise History of the Machine" is particularly provocative in that its epigrammatic text inquires into the varieties of significance technology holds for humanity, while other industrial artists appropriate machine sounds and imagery in a less analytical fashion. "Chapter and Verse" by Mother Tongue does not rely on the literal meaning of its text (which is slight), but its echoing, percussive sculpted sound is not without interest. Zoviet-France's "White Dusk" eradicates any distinction between text and music, collaging verbal fragments in a jarring, arrhythmic fashion suggesting the patience-straining extremes of academic musique concrete. The Revell/Mannix tracks alone merit the price of admission; it's unfortunate that Revell's Hollywood soundtrack success has taken him from the arena of such fascinating experimentation.


Filed under: Archives, Issue 16, 1997 releases, 1989 recordings

Related artist(s): Nurse with Wound, Zoviet France

Latest news

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Alexander Vogel & Collaborators - Eight Releases from 2004 – Alexander Vogel is your atypical teenager with an affinity for percussion and English improvisational icons. In late 2004 he took it upon himself to begin solo home recordings which soon evolved into...  (2005) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues