Peter Ablinger

I.E.A.O.V.

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The title acronym, I.E.A.O.V., stands for Instrumente und Electroakustisch Ortsbezogene Verdichtung, or Instruments and Electro-Acoustic Site-Specific Condensation, which is also the title of one of the two works by Peter Ablinger presented on this CD. Ablinger is as much a conceptual artist as a composer, and his concepts drastically redefine notions of time and space. In the title piece, his goal is to make frequency "identical to time." In order to do so, he takes a short instrumental segment -- from Gisela Mashayekhi-Beer's flute for the first realization of the piece, from Berndt Thurner's cymbals for the second one -- and "condenses" it in such a way that it becomes a timeless drone. The flute realization is 15 minutes long, the percussion one lasts 43 minutes -- enough to get lost into it a few times. These drones show a lot of activity on a microscopic level yet remain static overall, and they retain the main qualities of the original instrument. It makes for a puzzling listen, but hardly a compelling one. Even more difficult and puzzling is "Weiss/Weisslich 24." Ablinger provides an explanation in the liner notes: "While others work with sound, setting a sound and then a pause, I set audibility then inaudibility." The piece is split into four four-minute movements. Each of the first two present six 40-second recordings of ground noise (or silence) in selected churches. The last two present six 40-second recordings of white noise being projected inside the same churches. There couldn't be two sounds more opposite than these, right? But in fact, besides the loudness factor, the silence and noise tracks are surprisingly similar. For the serious sound art aficionado only.

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