The Scope XI
Ah going up against Liebezeit and Irmler was always going to be tricky, I know Andrew was up there, and Tony couldn’t make it down for other reasons and Steve was in Bracknell so we’re light on the ground. Still the electrocreche is a lovely falling object App on Dan’s phone and Stan’s orange tone generator which saw such good action at The De La Warr Pavilion.
It doesn’t meant it’s not quality, mind. first up is Inwards doing a Patch from scratch set, where he starts with his modular completely bereft of patch leads and build up a set completely on the fly. Those in the know set up behind him, so we can watch the sweat fly. It’s fascinating to watch and Kristian produces some pretty decent sounds.
Next up is Ragamatic over on the briefest of visits from Germany – he flew in at lunchtime and has to hare off to Stanstead for an early flight which basically means fleeing at 9:30… So we basically have two classic ragas on sitar with backing tracks and some live processing. The first has a slow distorted rhythm, noises rather than beats. The whole floating in spite of the tempo. The second raga has a short tabla / drum machine loop, and a breakdown with an evil overdrive phased section on the sitar sometime around the middle. On the whole it falls somewhere between Hot Roddy and Same Actor on the vector of known sitar performances at SoG, in terms of feel, but actually built around a proper raga than an improvisation built for MaxMSP patches or junglism.
Swarbrooke is poorly so we quickly (far too quickly) enter the realms of the last act of the evening. Thomas Stone also has to get home, though he doesn’t have quite as far to go, he still needs to leave sharp. The Contrabassoon is a beautiful instrument, old smoked wood and brass, curling with the country house air of an old shotgun. The tone is full and autumnal. Thomas has some backing tracks and a loop station along with a snare drum with a couple of transducers perched on top. The backing is simple, single harmonic tones, brief phrases, the activated snare is used sparingly and the overall affect is rather beautiful, we finish the evening on the verge of tears.
Dan and I end up downstairs with another pint talking about Daoism and Buddhism until Steve and Dave turn up from the other show fired up and glowing.