Elliott Sharp wrote a piece for Reinhold Friedl's new music ensemble Zeitkratzer. That's where the connection between the two and the idea behind this session came from. Some may feel this is an unlikely pairing. Indeed, although both players share an eclectic background in experimental music of all kinds, their main activities and personal styles set them apart. And in fact, they remain camped in their positions for most of this album. Friedl stays confined to the insides of his grand piano, hammering and bowing the strings, playing the hard body of the instrument, etc. Sharp brought in his whole arsenal: electric guitar, bass clarinet, saxophone, and all sorts of electronics. It creates an uneven situation in which, no matter how much Friedl reinvents himself on each track, Sharp keeps sounding more diversified. The fact that he can pack many more decibels and affect the mood of a piece with the twist of a knob also gives him more power over the music. Too often Friedl sounds subdued, his textural playing having no influence on the outcome. There is simply no place here for the delicate music featured on his CD with Michael Vorfeld (Au Défaut du Silence, 2001). The best moments are found in "Nostalgia" and "Afterlight." On the other hand, "Lipstuck" shows how little the American takes notice of the German. Anostalgia is not a throwaway, but it surely disappoints.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by François Couture