Michael Fahres — The Tubes
(Cold Blue Music CB0024, 2007, CD)
by Paul Hightower, Published 2008-01-01This one falls into the "environmental music" category. German artist Michael Fahres "composed" these pieces using sounds found in nature or from sources not originally intended for this purpose. He goes beyond musique concrète, however, with a strongly ambient quality to these three tracks. The longest, "The Tubes," clocks in at over 30 minutes and includes Jon Hassell on trumpet and Mark Atkins on didgeridoo. The inspiration here is a small island in the Atlantic Ocean called El Hierro that is part of the Canaries. Fahres' field recordings are run through processors and then sequenced together to create "music," though again there's no sense of melodies or arrangements. The sounds ebb and flow to created organic soundscapes, parts of which remind me of the more esoteric moments on Peter Gabriel's Passion album. The third track, "Coimbra 4, Mundi Theatre," is perhaps the most intriguing. Here, Fahres roamed the streets of Coimbra, Portugal, during a citywide festival, recording anything and everything, from brass fanfares to choral masses, schoolchildren, random street sounds, and the conversation of ordinary people in the marketplace. It all goes together to create a sonic photograph of a place in time and it's interesting to think how the same approach can be applied to just about anywhere and in so doing capture the character of the place based purely on recorded sounds, and Fahre's wizardry in stitching it all together. It's not music, but it works on the heart and the head in the same way.
Related artist(s): Michael Fahres
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more