Album Review

David Coulter/Michael Gira/Jean Marie Mathoul/Charlemagne Palestine “Gantse Mishpuchah: Music in 3 Parts” [Fringes]

cujo   9/23/2005   A Library, CD

Holy crap, this is intense. Three dense electro-acoustic drones that never let up and chill your bones. An album apparently recorded by correspondence between main players David Coulter, Michael Gira, Jean Marie Mathoul, and Charlemagne Palestine (all of whom except Mathoul are found elsewhere in our library). I have no idea what Gantse Mishpuchah means (is it Yiddish? Whole Shebang? Apr 2006: I have been alerted it means Whole Family), but one thing is clear: the apocalypse is upon us, and it is a drone.
Part # one (22:17): Sounds as if inspired by an L.A. traffic jam. Makes the floor shake. Some bells/gongs/pianos are chimed along the way, and towards the end somebody is actually strumming a guitar.
Part # two (15:35): Sounds as if the sounds of your Louisiana back porch was partially interpreted as a drone. Things that sound like frogs, owls, and creepy-crawlies interrupt the grasshopper-like drone. A thumping Afro-cuban beat melts in and out, as do some vocal and/or radio samples.
Part # three (15:47): Sounds as if inspired by an orchestra of one-stringed cellos and basses tuning up before a concert. Unyielding organ. Faint clips of people talking – possibly an urban street scene, looping of said voices. It ends abruptly then is followed by a few seconds of sounds of wind.
-Cujo, KFJC, September 2005

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