95CD - Bo Meson & Martin Archer - 288 / Babel
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Collaborations between poet / composer Bo Meson and composer Martin Archer tend to stray into odd places where neither of them would normally venture, and when they meet up normal rules cease to apply. Quite how the initial idea for this piece, inspired by the odd fact that Matt Damon’s script for the fourth Jason Bourne movie comprised a total of just 288 words, ended up as a metaphysical dialogue between Rasputin and Goethe set to a kind of surrealistic take on a middle-European palm court trio, is frankly anyone’s guess. Nevertheless, the end result, which gives plenty of room for the wonderful improvising skills of Graham Clark and Maja Bugge on violin and cello respectively, plus interludes from Archer’s creepy clarinets, is another fine example of Meson’s poetic exploration of arcane and obsessive detail.
These two compositions for sextet originate from very different sources but share a mode:
The text for 288 represents a rewriting of lines from a specific protagonist caught up in ‘world-historic’ events whose thoughts have been re-arranged into a new narrative here, as they have been misconstrued politically by many since those events… The false dichotomy of Apollonian vs Dionysian is invoked as is the way Nietzsche’s interpretation influenced Mittel-European thought. The premise of 288 is that if Jason Bourne can get away with just 288 words in a film then perhaps anything else, no matter how emotionally complex, might be summarised with a similar number.
A Horizontal Babel originates in poems written whilst considering both the differing exegeses (Jewish & Christian) concerning Genesis xi 1-9 and a colleague’s archaeological work in Hawaii with horizontal stratigraphy.
Bo Meson – voice, software instruments
Wolfgang Seel – voice
Peter Rophone – choral voices
Martin Archer – Bb and bass clarinets, software instruments
Graham Clark – violin
Maja Bugge – cello
This new release is awaiting first review