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[CP 199.10 CD] Hans Roosenschoon, Gerald LaPierre; If Music Be, Shades Of Burgundy

Creel Pone

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At the lofty "10" position in the cursed Creel Pone 199.X series is this doomed double-pack, collecting a pair of early-mid-80s South African pressings that were the source of fierce debate (for close to a decade) amongst the C.P. cabal surrounding what was, and what wasn't, ripe for the series.

Personally speaking, I feel that Hans Roosenschoon's A-Side-length "If Music Be (for Tape Collage)" is the single worst Musique Concète piece I have ever heard, consisting of clunky FM assemblages & the most dry-toast recitatif this side of an Industrial film, but I understand how the postmodern forces of schadenfreude (something we typically avoid) can lend an enjoyable rush of endorphins, even if the material itself is questionable (for example, when the piece descends into a hamfisted "heroic" arena-rock choogler w/ apropos "hands in the air" guitar solo, I kind of die on the inside more than a little bit). The non-Electronic B-Side fares better, with a certain post-Darmstadt embrace of clustering and extended instrumental & ensemble technique, but yeesh... Gorgeous cover though, replicated here beautifully.

Compiled on its own disc, conceptually adjacent perhaps solely due to its geography (this and the Roosenschoon are, to my knowledge, the lone two SA pressings of Early Electronic Music), LaPierre's "Shades of Burgundy" (what a title, Jesus) set fares marginally better, including a spate of wonderful material recorded in the University of Natal's Electronic Music Studio in 1981. Seemingly the innocuous issue of an Academic Composer ushering in the new funding year, there is a darker energy at work than is immediately evident, as witnessed by this bizarre blink-and-you'd-miss-it snippet from the liner notes (presented here free of context):

For this alone, the PTB have decided to grant access to the entirety of both titles, in a first-of-its-kind "Twofer" double-disc-at-single-disc-price, perhaps as an incentive to quiet those voices of doubt lurking within...