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Charlemagne Palestine - Godbear LP 27974
[Black Truffle]

Charlemagne Palestine - Godbear LP 27974
Revisiting his signature piano style in 1987 after several years focusing on visual art, Godbear presents three distinct variations that demonstrate the development of his piano music after the classic recordings of the early 1970s. Occupying the entire first side, The Lower Depths stages a slow descent from the piano’s mid-range to the Bösendorfer’s cavernous additional low octave, building into a thundering swarm of booming overtones. Breaking entirely with the stereotype of clinical minimalism, Palestine’s journey to the depths embraces passages of darkly romantic melody before slowly ascending to its starting point. The version of Strumming Music performed here condenses the developmental arc of the piece into eleven minutes, fanning out from a single octave to a complex harmonic wash that calls to mind Palestine’s enthusiasm for Debussy and Ravel. Timbral Assault is like an evil twin of Strumming Music, transforming its insistency and harmonic complexity into aggressive intensity and creeping dissonance, foreshadowing Palestine’s later collaborations with Christoph Heemann. A classic release, and one that, because of the variety of approaches surveyed within, serves as an ideal introduction to Palestine’s ecstatic and mysterious sound world. - Francis Plagne
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