[CP 050-051 CD] New Zealand Electronic Music
Well I’ll be - I went to Auckland in May of this year with the sole intent of finding a copy of the “New Zealand Electronic Music” set - well; and to play a killer show w/ Pumice and Dean Roberts / Guy Treadgold - which naturally was nowhere to be found in any of the George St. shops - although I did find both of the From Scratch LPs and a few copies of the solo Douglas Lilburn LP - and here, not three months later, like a bolt of Viking Thunder from down up over under; the Creel Pone re-production from that reader-of-minds Mr. P.C. C.P.
Originally released in 1975 on the Wellington-based Kiwi / Reed Pacific Records LTD. label in a deluxe 3LP box - beautifully replicated here; despite conforming to the C.P. “Flat” spec, everything down to the grain of the cardboard is visible! - this set features more or less a side of music each by 6 pre-eminent New Zealand Electronic Composers; Douglas Lilburn, John Rimmer, Rolf Harris, Jack Body, Ian McDonald, and John Cousins - all composed and executed at the Victoria Electronic Music Studios in Wellington between 1966 and 1975.
Lilburn we’re all of course familiar with after being fêted via a 3CD / DVD box set on Atoll, but the real focus is on the music by the other 5 composers whose music is pretty much unobtainable in this day & age otherwise. Plenty of amazing long-form pieces utilizing the then-new EMS line of synthesizers - the Synthi / VCS3 trademarks are all over these pieces - in league with field recordings, spoken dialogue and some fine bits of tape manipulation. This is most certainly the defining artifact of the early New Zealand Electronic / Experimental music scene; absolutely essential if any number of murky drones & scraping improvs pressed into lathe-cut polycarbonate discs that followed in its wake are of interest to you.
This 2015 edition includes all three LPs spread evenly across two discs - for clarification that's LP1/A • LP1/B • LP2/A on the first, LP2/B • LP3/A • LP3/B on the second - with a professionally-printed scale-down of the 16-page booklet; all original aesthetics left in tact.