The Hafler Trio

Four Ways of Saying Five

  • AllMusic Rating
    4
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

In the early '80s, the Hafler Trio organized a series of lectures in Holland as a forum for a more public presentation of their ideas and work in audio and video. Prior to this time, the only released works were Bang! An Open Letter, Seven Hours Sleep, and the 12" single "Alternation, Perception and Resistance" (reissued on Walk Gently Through the Gates of Joy). The Netherlands Lectures presented a complex and larger scale series of experiments with voice (including live readings, taped voices, and speech conveyed by telephone), backing tapes, and visual information. The success of the lectures led to the release of an edited version for audio only that was released as Three Ways of Saying Two. That LP was edited into a single track for representation here. Bounded by a circus calliope, the track is a long lecture about the work of Robert Spridgeon in two distinct voices. The first lecture, taking the first half hour, deals with Spridgeon's work in communication and its relation to religious phenomena. The second, delivered by the same voice identified on Bang! as Edward Moolenbeck, presents Spridgeon's work in the context of scientific experiments and Cold War paranoia. Behind the voices are combinations of drones, loops, and electronic noise, with occasional short instrumental interludes. "The Butcher's Block" is a collage of extracts from Hafler Trio installations and performances from the late '80s, and ranges from live installation recordings of drones and environmental noise to processed romantic violin and piano recordings, and even a ritualistic percussion piece. Because of the large amount of spoken word on this album, its appeal is more limited than other Hafler Trio releases, but followers of the group may be interested in the relations to Spridgeon's work and the group's ideas about communication generally.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
28:04
2
19:57
blue highlight denotes track pick