Cal Crawford

Sitting on Theories on the Frontier of Extension

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With this first solo album, Cal Crawford proves that he can hold his ground on sound art in the company of Christof Migone, Leif Elggren, Koji Asano, and the likes. Sitting on Theories on the Frontier on Extension is a typically obscure release from Squint Fucker Press: visual presentation is reduced to a minimum (and yet manages to include a unique element: each cover having been hammered on a concrete block), and no details are given pertaining to the what, how, or why of the sounds on the disc. The nine tracks don't even have titles. The press release is more generous though. "Sitting," in this case, refers to Crawford resting his behind on a pile of blankets with a microphone rolled into the middle of them. This one-hour recording served as the source material for this album, augmented by other similar recordings involving water, clothing, and skin. The results are puzzling and unrecognizable. Microscopic sounds form crackling textures that are interrupted by stretches of silence. At times it evokes a contact microphone taken hostage in an ant farm; at others you'd swear it's the sound of the fish-tank air pump and filter heard from within the fish-tank. As in Migone's Crackers (assembled using only sounds of cracking joints), the source material rarely gives away its true nature, but its range of metamorphosis is slightly limited. Clocking in at 73 minutes, the album runs out of ideas halfway through, but still makes for a provoking experience.

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