Monday, December 12, 2005

an absolutely terrible disease

Truth be, I picked up the first SPUNK album, Det Eneste Jeg Vet, Er at Det Ikke Er En Stovsuger (The Only Thing I Know, Is That It Isn't A Vacuum Cleaner), upon its release because Doramaar -- Kim Pieters' all lady free jazz group from New Zealand -- had pulled the shades down for good. Their fantastic CD Copula (Corpus Hermeticum) and the posthumous Fusteron LP Terra Incognita were a combined, thick mass of the finest snarled skree of their homeland and Europe's shattering take of free improv. Feel like they didn't get much of a shake here in the US, or, probably anywhere.

Now back to Norway. SPUNK members Maja Ratkje (voice, theremin, electronics) and Hild Sofie Tafjord (French horn, flute, electronics) would probably call me a pig for my thought process listed above -- check out their duo Fe-Mail's fabulous All Men are Pigs album -- but it is the truth. No matter, because since then Ratkje's work has been constantly floating atop all of the stacks around here. Along with Kristin Andersen (trumpet, violin, flute), Lene Grenager (cello), SPUNK follows in the acoustic glitch/insect buzz/ power blurt jazz style yet what truely makes it so brain-freezing fine is the surreal, almost fairy tale cloud cast over it -- like Spontaneous Music Ensemble conducted by Pippi Longstocking. Their new album En Aldeles Forferdelig Sykdom (Rune Grammofon) is minced and diced, like manic tape edits, of strings and skronks. Choir voices, digitally honed to seemed as if descending from Pippi's homeland, bounce from track to track giving the feel of an absolute celestial soundtrack as much as a firece, face-dagger, jazz platter. Their best yet.

SPUNK - Marbles
SPUNK - Dead Man Watching

MP3s removed at artist's request. SPUNK invites you to check out their sounds via MusicOnline.no.

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