Exposé Online banner

The Silverman — Blank for Your Own Message
(Beta-lactam Ring mt208, 2008, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2009-07-01

Blank for Your Own Message Cover artThe secondary title for this release is “A Zen Opera in Seven Parts,” and I will set aside any questions about the appropriateness of the Buddhist reference. If you really want to call it an opera, it’s the only opera I know that has no words and no singers. It is in fact a set of audio collages of varying degrees of musicality. There are long passages of toneless sound that are equivalent to electronic ambient music of the most abstract sort. There are other passages where a kind of rhythmic energy develops – in fact the first track sets this up with a brief rhythmic motif before devolving into found sounds and indistinct loops, with subtle reappearances of variations on the opening motif. And while it is true that there are no melodies or the trappings of conventional composition, the experience is never grating. There are no outbursts of irritating noise, no shocks, just a wandering flow of sounds. And it doesn’t overstay its welcome, either, clocking in around the 40 minute mark. Rather than thinking about it too much, you need to close your eyes, open your ears, and let the sounds permeate your consciousness, bringing up abstract images, a DIY inner light show. And for that it is elegantly suited, if not for close musical analysis of the traditional sort.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 37, 2008 releases

Related artist(s): The Silverman (Phil Knight)

Latest news

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more

2018-02-26
Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ian McDonald - Drivers Eyes – Let us take a long journey back through the ether to advent of progressive rock. Who do you see lurking around in the shadows? Well one person was Ian McDonald whose group, King Crimson, was a magic...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues