Phil Niblock (b. 1933)
G2, 44+/x2 (2002)
G2, 44+/x2 (check the song titles for an explanation of the album's title) consists of two versions of a single piece, "Guitar too, for four." The first is a solo performance by the Spanish guitarist Rafael Toral. The instructions for the piece appear to be quite simple but require an enormous amount of concentration and physical tension. Using an E-Bow (a small electronic device capable of magnetically vibrating the guitar's strings), he must hold it as close as possible to the strings without touching them, while manipulating his tremolo arm in an extremely subtle manner so as to educe the maximum amount of richness and volume from his instrument with a minimum of means. For the listener, this results in a deep, resonant, and multi-layered drone that oscillates from speaker to speaker, filling the aural space like a horde of chanting Tibetan monks. It's hypnotic, ravishing, and endlessly fascinating. The second rendition ups the ante considerably, taking samples from Toral, Robert Poss, Susan Stengler, and David First and adding in performances of the piece by Kevin Drumm, Lee Ranaldo, Thurston Moore, and Alan Licht, all mixed by Jim O'Rourke.
1. Nataliawork [21:05]
For bass flute and live processing
Live recording, Maison de Radio France, Paris, March 30, 2008
Natalia Pschenitschnikova: bass flute and vocals
Phil Niblock: laptop, ProTools