new music reviews authored by paul khimasia morgan

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Seth Cooke

Seth Cooke
Four No Input Field Recordings
UK  Every Contact Leaves A Trace  no number  3”CD-R  (2014)

Four delicious slices of noise of identical duration, titled CERO I to IV from Bristolian Seth Cooke.  Cooke may be known to you from his improvisational work with a cut-down sink disposal unit, his involvement with the Bang The Bore promotional entity, his drumming and percussion duties with Hunting Lodge, Defibrillators and UltraHumanitarian or even his previous releases on labels such as Compost & Height, Impulsive Habitat, 1000fussler or Organized Music From Thessaloniki.
The sparse production notes printed on the small sheet of transparency included within the elaborate packaging claim the work was recorded and edited over the course of a year, from October 2012 to October 2013.  The pieces sound like they could be derived from the sort of interference you would get between channels on analogue television receivers in “the old days”, but I suspect Cooke would be offended by such an assumption as I’m sure there is a lot more going on despite the strangely un-credible title Four No Input Field Recordings – an oxymoron, surely?  Or just a rare, (and welcome), case of an “experimental” musician with a sense of humour?  There is a great deal of development from track to track for those who listen closely, and a wealth of detail within the, at first, seemingly impenetrable fizz.  This has the result that the dark energy contained within the music coalesces inside the part of your brain that processes disquiet and enables you to relax fully.  At least that’s what happens to me when I get to the end of CERO IV.

Great hand-assembled multi-part packaging held together with a mini bulldog clip.  The grey card outer sleeve is embossed by what looks like a large sheet of Lego, there’s a digital print of spiral-type design, (see above), with the aforementioned transparency info sheet and disc in its own poly sleeve; all of this encased in a folded second digital print, this time the image is a kind of CAD update of something you might produce using the Spirograph drawing toy.

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