Jaap Blonk


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In 2000, free improv vocalist/sound poet Jaap Blonk decided to experiment with electronics. From this new approach resulted Averschuw, released by Kontrans in mid-2001. The source material remains Blonk's voice, which has a highly distinctive range of expression and can produce all the strangest noises. It is sampled and processed in real time -- and most of the time rendered unrecognizable. Each piece features a different array of possibilities, from basic distortion and ring modulation to more complex electronic setups. The first listen brings very little positive vibrations: the difference between this CD and anything Blonk has done before is so strong, a shock becomes inevitable. But even after many listens, one can't find much to enjoy in these crude, repetitive, unimaginative, sloppy live electronics. The last piece, "Glomrijk," will give a hard time even to die-hard noise fans. As honest as it can be, Blonk's approach sounds limited and outdated. "Spruicht" and "Zieuwis" held some promises, mainly because the musician's original gestures (and thus the process leading to the resulting sounds) are still identifiable. But as effects accumulate, Averschuw ceases to be Blonk's art to become any electro-head's Sunday afternoon hobby.

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