Samartzis/Vorfeld – Scheckenrock- CD – NVO

Samartzis and Vorfeld have both independently forged their own careers with idiosyncratic approaches, and having worked with and collaborated with other artists from the leftfield musical community, have nurtured a talent for something akin to electro-acoustic improv. The conjoining of the two approaches here on Scheckenrock; Vorfeld’s percussion and Samartzis’ electro/digital interventions, make for a fascinating listen that is something of a departure from NVO’s evanescent, near-silent offerings of late. Consisting of three long form pieces, Scheckenrock is at times a challenging experience as it traverses the outer limits of is neither quiet and restrained, nor sparsely populated, but has a quivering delicacy, and lightness of touch that qualifies it as both oblique and austere. There is more than dusting of abrasive strings, as the artists coax eerie harmonics from unorthodox usage of traditional instrumentation, with discreet textural presences hovering in the background. Occasionally, glistening high frequency buzzes can be perceived at the fringes of audibility, and most prevalent are the clanks and knocks of percussion, some traditional, others sounding like the dull, heavy thud of solid oak, others like the grating moevements of some enormous rusting machine. Without doubt, the duo of Samartzis and Vorfeld has yielded a work of stunning creativity, although not particularly my cup of tea, I have no doubt that both artist and label credentials will see it becoming a notable release, and for something that is a hybrid of lower-case and improv sensibilities, this wouls ssemingly be breaking new ground. Recommend. 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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