Unless you have been living in the wilds of Borneo, or perhaps some far distant planet, most of you will be familiar with both Lawrence English ( solo artist and Room 4o mastermind), and Francisco Lopez. This fascinating pairing unites two distinctly different, although mutually complimentary sonic talents in one recording, each artist having submitted their own field recordings for the other to work upon. Both of the guys here are no strangers to collaboration, both having worked with some of the most prominent names on the experimental/underground circuit for many years now, so it becomes a part of their language to transmit and transform the sonic DNA of another.
The mysteriously titled “HB”, is almost wilfully drenched in enigma and abstraction, with no explanation or unifying theme, other than what basically amounts to a file exchange, so the auditor is left immersed in a sea of oblique, leftfield experimentation, distorted field recordings, and blissful shards and fragments that fascinate, and pique the interest and imagination. Lopez, characteristically opens the collection with one of his classic UNTITLED pieces, #175, a 15 minute ultra minimal workout, that barely imposes itself on the ear, a cascade of activity that utilises slithers of micro-fine fabric to draw the listener into his world. English follows up with “Pattern Review by Motion”, a piece that blossoms from near silence, that swells in gradients, which then burst open in a froth of static, and amped-up gristle. The piece then fades and dissipates, rising and falling like slow breathing, using the self-similar sounds that Lopez opened with, a continuous, yet highly abstracted theme. English continues the collection with “Wire Fence Upon Opening”, again, enveloping us in a veil of opaque, and discrete auditory presences, minimalism taken to the Nth degree. Lopez closes the album with UNTITLED #204, a strange and alluring field recording, that sounds like a walk through a densely wooded area, full of crackles and ambiguous reference points, strange deformations, once again alternating this with the ultra-minimal central theme that he opens with. Overall, Baskaru have a masterwork of abstract minimalism on their hands, with two names that will carry this release to an undoubtedly successful conclusion – unique and intensely fascinating, and well worth your hard earned dollars..BGN