mercredi 19 août 2009
ÜL and Hunter Gracchus
Monday 17th August
Mario Bravo 439/441, Buenos Aires
The question goes beyond noise and random improvisation, directly to a shared voyage into defined soundscapes and their audiovisual connections with our imaginations.
ÜL, the humble superstars of Argentinian noise (see Reynols, Minexio VII, Virgin Vapor...) opened the show with three guitars in constant grinding cycles of intergalactic aural exploration. Sci-fi landscapes come to mind, real spatial reverberations in the white space of the ¨theatre bar¨. I am taken on a paranoid journey through amps and guitar paraphernalia as Charly Zaragoza sets the violin bow on the strings, Fernando Perales is on one side hunched over the guitar, fiddling with tools and providing gritty detail, and Alan Courtis dangles his guitar in midair and sucks out all possible frequencies from beating and shaking it.
Hunter Gracchus come from Sheffield, England, providing us with a nugget of the city´s experimental nucleus. On stage they replaced Michael Nyman´s orchestral envelopment of Peter Greenaway´s ¨A walk through H. The Reincarnation of an Ornithologist¨, itself an imaginary hike through mental maps and absurd anecdotes of the stirling British narrator. The sound muted, the camera is a finger walking along line drawings and scratchy X´s which mark the spot, of what we don´t know, of where we aren´t enlightened. We´re just given small clues and footage of birds in their surroundings. The film encapsulated the feeling of the exotic in Hunter Gracchus´s whirring music; some kind of spiritual searchings along colonial lines; the forageing of sounds strange to them, like obsessive rare bird watching. In the background the constant drone of the shruti (the bellowed box of Indian origin) is like the dark ink on corrupted paper. South American instruments, collected along the group´s tour add the cacophony of foreign chaos, and guitar and tom drum are recognisable guides.
Hunter Gracchus have just completed their tour, which sped them through Argentina to Chile and back again, playing with Omasin, Nebel Dots, Los Siquicos Litoraleños, Azur...
They left me their cd Sacred object of the yiye people, and Kamran´s solo project Harappian Night Recordings, both surprising recordings reminding me of the intrigued tappings of Sun City Girls. Thanks guys.