[CP 168 CD] Robin MacKenzie; A Sound Work To Accompany
Issued privately in 1972 by Toronto's Carmen Lamanna Gallery following an Autumn 1970 exhibition, this "Sound Work" by Sculptor Robin MacKenzie is a wonder of simplicity. Presenting a series of unadorned Sound Events - the approaches & recessions of single vehicles on what sounds like a lonely stretch of the 403 at 3am, then the Composer's footsteps similarly walking toward & away from the microphone's singular vantage point - in a manner befitting both the storied "Sounds of the Junkyard" Folkways LP and Luc Ferrari's often imperceptibly augmented realities.
The rough, pause-button-pregnant portable Nagra antics & subtle sound-on-sound techniques throughout lend a certain weight & uneasiness to what would appear on the surface to be a rather banal affair; in many ways this is the antidote to so much "Virtuoso" tape music in that the Composer's seeming contentment to "Dabble" with the form gives us the impression that he's saying exactly what he wishes with such simple aggregations of almost comically clichéd materials.
Echoes of Baudouin Oosterlynck's similarly nonchalant assemblages aside, this one is an acquired taste - much like the Arnold Aard, Iatrogenics, & Nicolas Schöffer titles - & should be seen as such; definitely not for everyone.