Wednesday, October 15, 2008

HUI "Excerpts From the Hui Tape Collections" (Stenze Quo / Meudiademorte)

This tape comes with a simple black and white photocopied insert that lists the title, time and all the instruments used on each side. The only other text is the the title "Hui- shows an excerpt of from the Hui tapes collection played by marcel turkovsky." It really makes you feel like you stumbled onto a demo or rough mixes from a huge library of master tapes. Judging by Marcel's output, i bet there is a friggin wine cellar somewhere full of master tapes, notepads filled with ideas and more instruments like the "polnisch knull" or a "pustrohr" that are just waiting to be manipulated and undone as were on this tape.

I remember watching Fast, Cheap and Out of Control and in the documentary there is a robotic scientist who is studying the way in which ants walk and comparing it to contemporary attempts at making movement mechanical. The ant is a really imperfect creature, stumbling about, falling, not precise at all, yet it is what the scientist believes is the most effective. They allow mistakes, working them into a larger routine, whereas robots of the R2D2 nature are so rigid that if they fall or bump into something they are rendered completely useless. There needs to be room for error, or better yet, error needs to be considered an integral part of the process.

Marcel's compositions have something of a similar ring, both in their process and the end result of the sound. I don't want to get too caught up in process, especially since i've never seen him play solo, but there does seem to be a focus paid on the process here, with irregular loops moving in and out of the foreground acting as both structural tool and as embellishment. While the tapes play both parts, they are also assigned a particular role as organic noises enter the field of sound, tapping, bells, walking, something in the background banging; all causing the initial tape looped sound or rattling to be re-registered as something 'taped' or secondary. It is this back and forth and attention to recontextualizing a sound that makes this tape so good. What is a hypnotic bug sound changes dramatically when a mbira/xylophone sound enters and pushes the skittering loop to the background.

This tape is a great example of using loops, layers, field recordings and primitive folk instruments to create a challening and exciting listen that supercedes the standard Line 6 loop fest. listen up!

Edit! I just went to listen to another Hui tape i have to realize they're the same, in different packaging, evidently this was initially released (still available) by Stenze Quo, another great label.

www.myspace.com/stenzequo
www.Meudiademorte.de
http://www.myspace.com/meudiademorte