Angel High Wires

3" CD in regular jewel box
la cooka racha

“angel high wires is an electroacoustic song cycle with words by geraldine monk and with music composed/constructed by martin archer.”

Geraldine Monk – texts
Martin Archer – electronics
Julie Tippetts – voice
Steve Roden – voice
Rachel McCarron – voice
Sedayne – voice
Philip Thomas – prepared piano
Chris Cutler – drums
Chris Meloche – electronics
Mick Beck – bassoon
Charlie Collins – flute,producer

i sing on tracks 1, 4, 7, 10

  • reviews:
  • “Electronic composer Archer’s music is always filled with surprises — a consequence of his tireless experimentation with sound, his liberal use of chance elements in his compositions, and his rotating cast of musicians and use of unconventional instruments (bassoon, crwth, prepared piano, etc.). On this disk, Archer also works for the first time with the human voice, and the results are predictably stimulating. This recording represents Archer’s collaboration with poet Geraldine Monk, whose poems Archer has set to music. Veteran new music vocalist Tippets is typically on the experimental edge, turning her four songs into abstract but dynamic adventures in vocalese, trilling and wailing to the accompaniment of Archer’s rumbling, stuttering electronic treatments. Tippetts offers the listener the greatest challenge, but also perhaps the greatest rewards. In contrast, Steve Roden’s pieces are both vaguely sinister and quietly beautiful. Roden’s fragile counter-tenor, combined with Archer’s electronic scores (which extend to ghostly enhancements of Roden’s voice), are a study in contrast — the poignant struggles of the human soul within a bleak, futuristic environment. Rachel McCarron and Sedayne combine on their four pieces, with Sedayne also playing crwth, a Welsh stringed instrument somewhat equivalent to a bowed lyre. These pieces are the perhaps most conventionally dramatic, although Sedayne’s declamatory vocals may not be to every listener’s taste. As always, Archer’s electroacoustic treatments and blends of instrumental timbres and textures are fascinating in their own right – a provocative mixture of the random, the alien and the familiar.”

    bill tilland, BBC website