Various Artists - Souvenirs van de Woeste Grond: "In a very nice hand crafted and printed digipak ... I usually don't like compilations, but this one is great!"
Published: July 1, 2014
In a very nice hand crafted and printed digipak we find this project curated by Harco Rutgers, the man behind Esc.rec. It all has to do with countryside he lives in, the surroundings of Deventer – go get a map – and that happens to be one my favourite Dutch surroundings. Open space, wood, small rivers, farms and all that. Oh, by the time I am old and rich…
From various locations in that area stories were captured and if you go there you can hear them – I assume in some arty setting? One of these souvenirs, as they are called, is this project by Rutgers, for which he invited six composers to take one location/story and build a musical piece around it. In the booklet we find parts of that, but they can be found online too: www.souvenirsvandewoestegrond.nl – all in Dutch.
But in the international language of music, we have here some great music. All quite moody and dark, maybe reflecting the ‘wild earth’ of the title (I am not sure), but there are also some variations. There is a nicely obscured piece by Reinier van Houdt, normally a piano player for the serious modern music, with a processed piano towards the end, Weerthof’s sampled pop music (closing down the proceedings on a melancholic but musical note) and Gluid, opening here, with a piece that vaguely owes to the world of IDM. The four pieces in between are the more abstract ones. Gareth Davis for instance with his bass clarinet, contrabass clarinet, piano and tape spans in fifteen minutes lots of silence and some very moody wind instruments, shimmering like wind, and Machinefabriek does the same using whatever he always uses; or so it seems. Maybe for his doing an easy piece? Wouter van Veldhoven surprises me with a piece of guitar playing, eroded by low magnetic impulses, and corroded voices. Almost like a singer song writer I thought. Very nice. I usually don’t like compilations, but this one is great!