AMN Reviews: Ørvind Torvund – The Exotica Album [Hubro HUBROCD2580]

Back in the 1990s, there was a revival of interest in some of the popular music of the 1950s and 1960s—the music the WWII generation enjoyed after they returned home and moved out to the suburbs to start families and careers. Comprising several genres—exotica, space-age pop, beautiful music–it was slightly jazzy, slightly smooth and surprisingly sophisticated and up-to-date. Call it music in the time of Mad Men. With The Exotica Album, Norwegian composer Ørvind Torvund revisits this music with both affection and sympathetic irony.

Torvund’s original compositions take some of the stylistic elements of the exotica genre and rearrange them through collage and other formal deformations. Yes, there are intimations of nostalgia—particularly for listeners of a certain age—but it’s thrown off balance by the intrusion of Torvund’s contemporary sensibility. Just as you’re about to have an involuntary recollection of your father’s 1964 Ford Falcon—the glint of the chrome, the warmth of the seat underneath you after the car had been sitting out in the summer sun, the last traces of the new-car smell—the music takes a contemporary lurch and brings you back to the present moment. What makes The Exotica Album more than a curiosity in this regard is the unique perspective Torvund carves out: he sees exotica from the point of view of the high modernist art music of the same period, specifically, the electronic experimentation that sprang up in radio laboratories and universities. He’s helped in this by Jørgen Træen’s modular synthesizer, which plays a crucial role within the larger, more conventional orchestra ably supplied by the fifteen-piece BIT20 Ensemble.

This Week in New York 


Thursday, July 11 at 7:30 PM
Tickets $25-$100
New York Society for Ethical Culture, 2 West 64th Street, New York, NY

Thursday, July 11 at 7:30 PM
Tickets $12-$20
The Jewish Museum, 1109 5th Avenue, New York, NY

Saturday, July 13 at 7:30 PM
Tickets $10
Scholes Street Studio, 375 Lorimer Street, Brooklyn, NY

Freq Reviews

Source: Freq.

Fire! Orchestra – Arrival
Rune Grammofon

Charles Hayward and Keiji Haino / EP64 (live at The Exchange)
Bristol 19 June 2019

Various – Drone-Mind // Mind-Drone Volume 7

New Book From GRM Reviewed

Source: The Quietus.

It is over sixty years since the foundation of the Groupe de Recherches Musicales in Paris, but its roots stretch back even further, to the wartime experiments of broadcaster Pierre Schaeffer with microphones and shellac discs at the Resistance cell-cum-experimental studio of the Club d’Essai. As he records in the pages of his 1952 book, In Search of a Concrete Music, Schaeffer had set out in search of “the most general musical instrument possible.” In the end, what he found was something more like a new language, a new solfège, a new form of relationship with the sounding environment. Arguably, in his tethering of aural attention to an analysis that would lead directly to the creation of the new, Schaeffer did for the ear what Francis Bacon’s Novum Organon had done for the eye, more than 300 years earlier.

All About Jazz Reviews

Source: All About Jazz.

Patrick Brennan / Abdul Moimême
Terraphonia (Creative Sources Recordings)

Nat Birchall
Obeah Man (Jazzman Records)

Michele Rabbia/Gianluca Petrella/Eivind Aarset
Lost River (ECM Records)

The Fictive Five
Anything Is Possible (Clean Feed Records)

Multiple Artists
International Anthem: The Beat of the Past, Present and Future

Bill Bruford’s Earthworks
Earthworks Complete (Summerfold Records)

Emanative & Phil Ranelin
Vibes From The Tribe (Steve Reid Foundation)

Soft Machine
Hidden Details (MoonJune Records)

Transparent Productions Fall Opening Performances Announced

Source: Transparent Productions.

23RD season opening performances!

Saturday, September 14, 2019
Anders Nilsson on guitar
Michael T.A. Thompson on drums
Jason Kao Hwang on violin and viola.

Sunday, September 15, 2019
Michael Bisio on bass
Kirk Knuffke on cornet
Fred Lonberg-Holm on cello

6950 Maple Avenue, WDC 20002