Andrew Leslie Hooker
In Emptiness There is Truth
(Call No Man Happy Until He is Dead)

CD (E153)

 

Belgium £13 (including postage)

Europe £15 (including postage)

Rest of world £17 (including postage)

Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi

Edition of 200 copies


A soundwork commissioned for the 2010 edition of the Ravello Festival, curated by Achille Bonito Oliva, Stefania Miscetti and Gianluca Ranzi. 

 

—Voice: Seijiro Murayama

—Voice recording engineer and EQ: Stefano Pilia
—Original stereo mix: John Duncan
—All other sounds, recording,

editing and mixing by ALH

 

“In relation to this piece, the extended overtones created by the clashing frequencies of the ‘ghost chorus’ could indeed be read as faint glimmerings of

a sublime imperative. This imperative, brought into harmonic relief by means

of the intervallic ‘beatings’ of voice

and ‘voices’, admits the possibility of

a transfiguration of the criminal void by means of a deliberate intensification of those glimmerings into an immaterial, abstract reality completely removed from any form of social/political/ temporal control. It is almost as if by charging

a terrifying, ‘physical’ emptiness with an implicative, narcissistic terror, the means of negotiating the far greater terror of

a ‘metaphysical’ infinity, i.e. non-existence, is manifested as a form of rhapsodic contemplation aimed towards interiorising and indeed occupying the void, leading ultimately, and of course theoretically, to non-action.”

— Excerpt from La Follia Dell’ Arte
 

See also
Andrew Leslie Hooker (E203)

Review
 

Personally speaking, it is a curious coincidence that the city hosting this site-specific composition in 2010 was Ravello (in the Italian region of Campania),

where your reporter was literally stunned by the place’s dizzy heights many years

ago (the local vistas on the sea are absolutely breathtaking). A similar type

of mental suspension reappeared after subjecting myself to sequential listens

of In Emptiness There Is Truth, which in essence consists of 45 minutes shaped by an extremely ductile “ghost overtone choir” replete with feedback signals and what the composer calls “lower-case sonics” (I didn’t understand if actual voices, perhaps treated, live in the mix). Amidst the wrinkles of this psychically influencing substratum, Murayama emerges with a series of hagridden vocalizations halfway through a silently strained gargle and the gasping of someone in dire need of oxygen.

The whole creates a state of floating anguish, underlined by a sense of aural instability not too distant from certain metamorphic environments typical of Roland Kayn’s cybernetic creatures, though definitely more “minimalist” in its asphyxiating reiterativeness. Ultimately,

a statement born for an external environment whose acoustic validity

is confirmed in a home listening scene.

But several attempts are required to really get into the core of the matter.


Massimo Ricci at Touching Extremes