April 1st, 2013
Ways of the Voice is a collection of four works for the human voice composed by Leo Kupper (born 1935, Belgium) between 1984 and 1998. “All of the sounds on the album originate with the Brazilian singer Anna Maria Kieffer. Two works, ‘Anamak’ and ‘Amkéa’, have an ‘orchestral accompaniment’ composed of tropical bird songs. Making use of elements of electro-acoustic music and sound poetry, the music expresses wonder at Brazil’s tropical beauty and, ultimately, an intense love of the abstraction of words and musical forms.” Via granular synthesis: smeared, stretched and slowed-down vocal sheets provide the foundation for Anna Maria Kieffer’s overdubbed vocal extremities as she traverses the many moods of avant-garde throat sports—from silly, childlike chirping, twittering and gargling (which gets really hilarious on “Annazone”) to multi-layered chaos burritos, all the way to beautiful, unadorned laments. Perfect for fans of experimental vocalists like Cathy Berberian, Meredith Monk, etc.
Label: Pogus Catalog Number: P21018-2 Format: CD Packaging: Jewel case Tracks: 11 Total Time: 61:08 Country: United States Released: 1999 More: Discogs, Last.FM, Pogus, Sub Rosa
Text ©2003 Arcane Candy
March 28th, 2013
Born in 1935 in Nidrum, Belgium, Leo Kupper worked with Henri Pousseur from 1959 to 1962 at Apelac, the first electronic music studio in that country. In 1967, he became the founder and director of the Studio de Recherches et de Structurations Electroniques Auditives in Brussels, and, from 1977 to 1987, he followed that up with Sound Domes in Roma, Linz, Venezia and Avignon. His first foray into the world of commercial recordings was back in the era of vinyl records in the ’70s and ’80s, followed up in the ’90s by discs of the compact variety. I’ll have to admit that on first listen, his Electro-Acoustic CD from 1996 caught me by surprise, as I was expecting a more Xenakis-like lamination of huge, grainy placemats, only to receive pretty much the opposite. The three-track “Electro-Acoustic Santur” (1989), for the Santur (an ancient, 72-string Persian instrument played with sticks, fingers and brush) and electronic sounds, stretches out beautiful taps and plucks of clear string resonance over a canvas of deep hisses, subdued drones and bird-like warbles.
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