Schick and Szcezesny – The View Underneath – CD – NVO


“Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear” say the brief, enigmatic sleeve notes that accompany this release. Occupying similar sonic territory to Steinbruchel on his “Skizzen” release some years back, The View Underneath traverses polar extremes, from rich deep, warm, tonal backgrounds, to the upper limits of audibility, subtly woven into one unifying form. Each track is numbered in sequence, a perfunctory cataloguing of experiments and diagnostic explorations that slowly unfold over eight pieces. These pieces limit themselves to enveloping textural swatches, with neither harmony, nor tunefulness being apparent, save for occasional, minor incursions provided by any one of a number of objects, or maybe a slowly dissolving sound captured in the laptop alone, a piano perhaps, or remnants of a guitar sample. Unlike Steinbruchel, Schick and Szcezesny rarely lapse into anything resembling formal musical structure, preferring to dissect and exploit the sonorous minutiae at the extremes of the auditory spectrum, engendering a uniform, diaphanous fabric, populated with oddly off-world sequences provided by an unknown inventory of found sounds, or strange, resonant segments of high frequency that shift in and out of focus.

This is sonic art in every meaning and ramification of the phrase, and further adds to NVO’s now comprehensive remit of exploring “aspects of minimalism”, being at the almost imperceptible end of the audible spectrum, yet retaining a mature and elegant stance that has far reaching possibilities for the imagination. Essential. 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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