TTW#58 – Robert Curgenven – Transfixed
Cassette only – limited edition of 150 copies
SOLD OUT AT SOURCE
A: Such was the Wreck of the Hesperus
B: The Internal Meta-Narrative of Turner’s Tempest As He Is Tied To The Mast in Order to Create the Direct Experience of the Drama Embodied Within a “Snow Storm – [wherein a] Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouth making Signals in Shallow Water, and going by the Lead. [is rendered by virtue of the claim that] The Author was in this Storm on the Night the Ariel left Harwich”
Illustration – Gerard Forde
A: Various recordings of live performances in UK from late 2011 remixed, pipe organ recordings from Cornwall from 2011-2013, a 78rpm acetate from 1927, series II resonating dubplates, Stereo test LPs, generalised record and turntable abuse, industrial fans, custom-made low-and high-frequency oscillators.
B: Pipe organ recordings from West and Mid-Cornwall, turntables, series II resonating dubplates. No electronics.
Thanks to Alan Curgenven for the oscillators.
Robert Curgenven (1974) is an Australian composer/sound artist currently based in Cornwall. His work draws on the physicality of sound, not just the physical impact on the body but how it can shape our perception of space and the dramaturgical flow of time. After many years living and working in the elemental vastness of the tropics and deserts of Northern and Central Australia and subsequently five years in Europe, relocating to Cornwall has facilitated a return to wild country and the pipe organ. The renewed focus on pipe organ comes following over 30 years of active engagement in composition, radio and performance since beginnings as a classically trained organist.
The Wire (UK):
Transfixed by Robert Curgenven is more of an Eliane Radigue-type proposition. Curgenven, originally a classically trained organist, has moved from the vast deserts of Australia to the pocket handkerchief landscapes of Cornwall, bringing with him a sense of great space. He combines ambiguous pipe organ drones with the dusty crackle of old acetates to create an epic beauty, referencing along the way Turner’s paintings of wild seascapes. It’s largely static, a subtle music of textures.
Esteemed and travelled sound artist Robert Curgenven presents remixed live and pipe organ recordings from West and Mid-Cornwall on The Tapeworm. Side A, ‘Such was the Wreck of the Hesperus' reworks documentation of live performances in UK from late 2011 with elements of a 78rpm acetate from 1927, series II resonating dubplates, Stereo test LPs, generalised record and turntable abuse, industrial fans, custom-made low-and high-frequency oscillators. In its 16 minute duration it wends from gaseous basses and silty interference to static drones and brooding harmonics reminding of Philip Jeck. Side B, ‘The Internal Meta-Narrative of Turner’s Tempest As He Is Tied To The Mast in Order to Create the Direct Experience of the Drama Embodied Within a “Snow Storm – [wherein a] Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouth making Signals in Shallow Water, and going by the Lead. [is rendered by virtue of the claim that] The Author was in this Storm on the Night the Ariel left Harwich' or ‘Turner on the Mast' for short, employs pipe organ recordings from West and Mid-Cornwall, turntables, and series II resonating dubplates to ghostly effect, no electronics used whatsoever.
Aquarius Records (US):
Yet another fantastical bit of mysterious audio alchemy from the always weird and wonderful UK tape label The Tapeworm, this one from Australian composer/sound artist Robert Curgenven, who, armed with pipe organs, industrial fans, old acetate 78's, resonating dubplates, stereo test lps, custom made oscillators, and a handful of turntables, crafts some gorgeously lush hyperminimalism that exists somewhere between the woozy turntablism of Philip Jeck, the gauzy washed out ambience of the Caretaker, and the fields of industrial hiss and crackle of Restgeraeusch. Slow shifting fields of static, underpinned by softly pulsing chordal thrum, soft swirls of blurred, bleary shimmer, morphing into wheezing clouds of droning organs, stately and haunting, hushed and atmospheric, definitely headphone listening, or at least LOUD speakers in a quiet room, but it's worth it, some seriously mesmeric deep listening lowercase loveliness.