OHM “G5” C50
(Dinzu Artefacts)

I’ve been sitting on this chair in this museum for what seems like hours, and I think everyone has gone home except for Ohm, the Dutch trio tinkering away on … instruments? … in the corner over there. I dare not move, unless I break the spell. That I have an important appointment I simply must get to is inconsequential – I should’ve thought of that before I wandered into this museum and sat down on this chair and become mesmerized by this Ohm group. Oh well – the vice chancellor can wait fifty minutes!

For I am a paragon of patience myself, at one with the slow unfolding of “G5,” unfazed by heaps of objects designated “sound sources”: “sound guns”; “spinning top”; “shredder”; “pencil drums”; “mechanics.” These are the things you hear on “G5,” among others, played live and recorded at two different sessions in 2017: Sonic Acts at Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, and Gaudeamus Muziekweek, TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht. That I’ve spelled these things correctly is a minor miracle unto itself.

It is impossible to know what is being played while listening to the recordings on cassette tape, but being there, sitting on this chair in this museum, is like being a witness to a slow-motion tornado of minimal rhythmic activity. Ohm’s sounds are like breathing, air flowing into and out of lungs, punctuated by dust motes and germs and coughs – so, smooth, yes, but also tactile and a little disconcerting.

As “G5” passes the fifty-minute mark I unglue myself from my position and wander off toward the entrance, forgetting everything that I was supposed to do in the past hour and not worrying about it anymore anyway, I am inspired to maybe wander through a gallery or two before poking my umbrella-covered head back out into the overcast city. Although if they don’t have any Picassos in here, I’m gonna be pissed.

[Disclaimer: I wasn’t actually there.]

Dinzu Artefacts