In Ernesto Diaz-Infante's career, there is the work of the inspired free improviser who shines in his (mostly) guitar duo with Chris Forsyth and within the Left Coast Improv Group. And there is the other, murkier half: the underground tape artist, spaced-out mumbler, and field recordist. This split cassette released by Foreign Lands belongs without a doubt to the second category, alongside previous solo releases for the same label, oTo, and Seagull. Diaz-Infante and Charles Lareau each get 30 minutes of tape. The former's "San Francisco" consists of recordings from the street (many buses and delivery trucks) spiced up with hallucinated guitar strumming, calm half-heard singing (the dazed "I'll kill you in your sleep" kind), and clink-clank noises that must come from the "machines" mentioned in the credits. The collage is not convincing; it sounds strange the outsider art way (instead of the experimental art way). The piece by Lareau (aka Das Torpedoes and a member of Naturaliste) is much better, but maybe that has more to do with the fact that a thunderstorm is more appealing than traffic sounds. Titled "Omaha," it consists of what appears to be a continuous field recording with very subtle guitar picking and light percussion added. If one word can describe Lareau's music, it is "unassertive," but this time his usual shyness serves the inherent beauty of the recording very well.
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AllMusic Review by François Couture
feat: Charles Lareau