jueves, 9 de abril de 2015

Rapoon – Cultural Forgeries

Cultural Forgeries is a pagan festival, held in Miles Davis’ Sanctuary.

Cultural Forgeries is an ethnographic trawl through the vision inducing music of the world.

Cultural Forgeries is an unplugged album, (sort of), from Robin Storey, formerly of Zoviet:France.

Cultural appropriation is a weird thing. On one hand, as artists and musicians, we take inspiration from all over, and want to pay homage and explore ideas raised by art from all over, regardless of origin. On the other hand, we don’t want to co-opt other people’s struggles, as if we’d lived them, as a way to seem “cool” or “with it” or “down”. Consider the cases of some white kids adopting gangsta rap to seem tough and from the streets, or another buying some Putumayo world music sampler at a Starbucks to seem more worldly, as they sip on exploitative brews, as illustrations of this tangled skein.

Robin Storey has been taking inspiration from cultures from all over for over 3 decades, beginning with his industrial terror outfit Zoviet:france, and as Rapoon, since 1992. In that time, he’s covered a ton of artistic ground, from harsh noise to smooth ethnological trance to dark ambient, releasing over 60 records on a laundrylist of underground labels.

For all that, this release from our friends Alrealon Musique is an anomaly, in that Robert Pepper, of PAS Musique, asked Storey to make an ‘unplugged’ record. He set to work with a field recorder and a small orchestra of world instruments, from banjo to bodhran, pocket trumpet to mouth harp to squeezebox to slide guitar. The results don’t feel exploitative in the slightest; instead, it’s like a meander through The Secret Museum Of Mankind – a guided tour through the trance music of the world.

For much of his career, Robin Storey has been approaching world music through recordings, bending, warping, and stretching exotic recordings, and spreading them across a framework of whatever style he is working in, at that moment. It’s refreshing, here, to hear him playing instruments live, and capturing the results, which gives a much more “live” and authentic air to the procession. This is helped, in no small part, by excellent performances on the sundry sound making devices. Album opener “Donnez-moi Une Cigarette” wouldn’t sound out of place on Miles Davis‘ Bitches Brew, and is of a similar lonesome quality to “Sanctuary”, from that record, and then cast into an eternal funhouse of echoing mirrors, slathered in bubbling dub delays:


1. donnez­-moi une cigarette
2. Bodhran and ran
3. Banjo Arabiata
4. Suit Toot Coconoot
5. I saw a man
6. Slender...in clouds
7. Some distance
8. The summer lies heavy
9. Along the calling path
10. Sway...down down
11. Bells temple ask
12. Glass
13. Cello transfused
14. Cello yellow
15. Je veux d’l’amour
16. The delta ends
17. murmur now...finis

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