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Thursday, March 10, 2011

AMM - Uncovered Correspondence (Matchless, 2010) ****½

By Stef

It is given to very few artists to have created a language entirely their own, but that is what the British band(?) AMM has done over the years, in various line-ups and configurations, with Eddie Prévost on drums as the only unifying element since 1965, and with John Tilbury on piano for the last two decades, here with just the two of them. You may like them or not, but they have made history, and they still do, with lots of young musicians moving into the broad avenue they created.

They were among the first artists to work with the endless sound possibilities of their instruments, like archeologists carefully unearthing new layers of sounds, and especially those that had never been there in the first place!

This album, subtitled "Postcards from Jaslo" was recorded at the concert hall of the Jasielski Dom Kultury (Jaslo Cultural Centre) in southern Poland on 15th May 2010, and the entire album resonsates with the space that it was recorded in.

The music remains fascinating, even more minimalist due to the limited instrumentation, yet equally evocative and expressive as their previous albums. And yes, the approach and the overall sound are predictable - this is AMM beyond any doubt - the preciousness, the sophistication, the inventiveness, the cautious discipline, the love for the sound itself, the incredible tension and sustained sense of anticipation .... it is all there, beautifully there ...

The absolute brilliance of this music is the attention given to detail. In most other kinds of music, there seems to be an absolute abundance of notes, spent and consumed carelessly, but here, with AMM every note seems and sounds incredibly valuable, as something that has to be used sparingly, in order to really be fully appreciated and savoured.


© stef


Richard said...

I've never heard the two in duet, this is exciting.

Am I imagining things, or is the cover designed to look like a Naxos cover?

PS How long is the CD, Stef?

Stef said...

Hi Richard, about 65 minutes and well worth every second of it, includng the silence !!


Anonymous said...

If you like this, be sure to listen to,

Tilbury & Duch & Davies - Cornelius Cardew - Works 1960-70,Label:Plus3db

frankiepop said...

This is a miss for me. I think it is important to note that Prevost in scrapping a cymbal for the duration.