Exposé Online banner

Charlemagne Palestine — A Sweet Quasimodo between Black Vampire Butterflies for Maybeck
(Cold Blue CB0025, 2006, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01

A Sweet Quasimodo between Black Vampire Butterflies for Maybeck Cover artIn the 30 or so years that Charlemagne Palestine has been around, this writer has never heard any of his music until now. It was inevitable that one of his recordings would reach my ears eventually, but the reader needs to keep in mind that this is my first exposure, so I can't offer much in the way of comparisons to any previous recordings. A four-minute intro of spoken anecdotes accompanied by the ringing sound from a brandy snifter leads into the main event: an intense and powerful minimalist piece performed on two grand pianos. A full eight minutes of explorations on a single note go by, with varying accelerations and velocities in seemingly random patterns, one or the other or both sustain pedals in play, researching the minute differences in tuning between the two instruments before finally a second note is introduced one half step away from the first. This adds a entirely new dimension to the proceedings, with a whole universe of harmonics and microtones ringing together as the second note recedes and is eventually replaced by others, some complementing the first playfully, others finding a mildly disturbing dissonance. The piece begins moving into quieter realms, approaching stillness, then evolving back again with an aggressive passion, going through a number of these cycles across its 35 minute duration. While this is probably not for everyone, fans of Steve Reich, Tony Conrad, late 70s Battiato, and even Klaus Schulze should find plenty here to appreciate.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 35, 2006 releases

Related artist(s): Charlemagne Palestine

More info
http://www.coldbluemusic.com

Latest news

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Liberation. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Autumn's Grey Solace - Over the Ocean – In this Florida duo, Erin Welton covers vocal and keyboard duties, Scott Ferrell covers everything else, and they both have a hand in composing the tunes. This is by far the prettiest music I have...  (2005) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues