Isnaj Dui – Amacrine – MiniCD – Smallfish


Katie English, recording as Isnaj Dui is a multi instrumentalist working primarliy with flutes, and home made instrumentation such as the “electro dulcimer”. She creates lush, textural soundscapes with a pared down approach that is best described, and quantified as minimalism. At its best, one of the principle tenets of great minimalism is of not being afraid of ultra-simplicity. Isnaj Dui is the perfect exemplar of this approach, using the most economic means available to create wonderfully restrained soundscapes.

Opening track “Gently Severed” uses the electrodulcimer to pick out shards of notes, that are then looped and fed through silken swathes of reverb that gradually opens out into a beautifully rich tapestry of enveloping, delicious sound. English’s study of Indonesian Gamelan music, and her studies with alternative tonality are what largely inform her work, framing each piece with unique language, combined with electronic effects, distortions and and disturbances. The second track, “Five Years” very much yields to a more fractured approach, using sampled instrumentation which is then spliced and manipulated, to create strange shapes and interstices, harmonic intersections which at first appear at odds with any kind of traditional compositional technique, but that gradually swell and evaporate, floating like torn tissue paper in the breeze. Final track, “Lieunb” sees the flute take central position, floated over a tonal curtain, peppered with nagging, sparkling rhythms, that is infused with a Gamelan- like quality. This, being the latest release on the essential Smallfish Mini CD label, is a great example of why to buy into the whole series, a welcome and important addition to the field of minimalism, I hope to hear more from Isnaj Dui.BGN


About whiteline1

WHITE_LINE was set up three years ago, in order to play and promote the work of artists and musicians working under the banner of "minimalism", in all its many guises. This has led to a regular and highly successful mix slot on the Garden of Earthly Delights radio show in the UK, and guest appearances on Resonance FM (frequenzen show). We now aim to extend the remit of the mix slots by reviewing (as often as possible) material that encapsulates and crystallises the minimalist ethic, and hopefully we'll be leading artists and audiences alike towards a deeper appreciation of this and other marginalised genres. I welcome your comments, and criticisms, and would love to hear from labels and artists who would like their work showcased on the show, or reviewed here. We regret that due to time constraints, we cannot review everything that is sent to us, but will endeavour to give exceptional work an "honourable mention" at the very least, and links to quality sites that we think worthy of mentioning. I am trying to support labels and artists as much as possible by promoting their work, not least because I am a stereotypical "struggling artist" myself, but also because there are so few younger artists entering this particular scene, and there is a danger of it becoming the sole domain of a handful of forty somethings who really ought to be doing something better with their time! Having worked for most of the more reputable underground magazines in the early 90's, I was never afforded the luxury of taking time and care over reviews, as deadlines and column space were always hanging like the sword of Damocles over me. With WHITE_LINE, I have the luxury of being able to review when I have time, and I am receptive to a particular mood, and hopefully this will reflect in the quality and length of some of the reviews. If you like what you see, please link to me to encourage more traffic through the site, and cross promote whatever is happening out there. Address for promotional material: 45 Drovers Walk Spring Park, Kingsthorpe Northampton NN2 8BB UK

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