Exposé Online banner

Larry Kucharz — Smphncs
(International Audiochrome IA43, 2014, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-08-26

Smphncs Cover artLongtime Exposé readers who have been paying attention will recognize Kucharz’ name as we’ve reviewed nearly all his releases going back to 1998’s Unit 25: Dark Red. Sometimes his electronic works have been closer to experimental techno styles, other times going in more floating ambient directions, but Smphncs is a first of its kind among his recorded output to date. Less than a minute into the opener “Elevator Phantasy Waltz” the listener will recognize that this is a classical composition fully realized with an arsenal of electronics, applying techniques and stylings from many of his previous works in an entirely new way. While much of what’s here seems influenced by the softer more gentle side of Gershwin and Grofe, as well as many of the 19th and 20th century European impressionist composers, conveying a similar sort of playful imagery, changing moods and colorful atmospherics. Astute listeners of Kucharz’ previous works will recognize that all the trace elements of much of his previous work is here in abundance, they are nonetheless assembled in new ways, folded into more ambitious compositions that sparkle, morph, and delight. The program continues with “Adagio 43,” a slower piece with a memorable melodic takeaway. Other pieces like “Toccata 43” explore superimposed faster paced and lighthearted melodies over ambient wash backdrops. “Larghissimo 43” finds a more tranquil comforting ambient zone of slow morphing changes carefully layered over one another, it’s a piece that would have been right at home on one of the earlier works like Computerchoral Green Prints. There are a lot of interesting works here that cover new ground compositionally, but overall Smphncs will leave the listener in a more relaxed, de-stressed state at the conclusion of the eight pieces. And that’s a good thing!

Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Larry Kucharz

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Cul de Sac - Ecim – This four-piece from Massachusetts offers a free-wheeling neo-psychedelic sound that finds itself at home somewhere between current bands bands like Porcupine Tree, and the experimental music of...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues