Jérôme Noetinger – Sur quelques mondes étranges 2LP
Long-time touchstone of international experimental music presents his monolithic (and first) solo vinyl Sur quelques mondes étranges on Felix Kubin’s Gagarin Records. Jérôme Noetinger is known to most for the audio-visual trio Cellule d’Intervention Metamkine, alongside his countless recorded & live collaborations, compositions for radio & stage, and breathtaking multi-channel diffusions in the acousmatic tradition.
Discovering the ReVox B77 tape machine as his tool for live electro-acoustic music in 1987, Noetinger has doggedly investigated his instrument over 35 years, establishing him as a vital contemporary composer/performer of the medium. His work is radical and interrogatory, using a pan-historical array of analogue devices to construct soundworlds which sidestep digital monochrome, landing in a galaxy of simmering malfunction, dynamic physicality & rhythmic debris. Programming Le 102 in Grenoble for over a decade, as well as directing Metamkine distribution for over three, his encyclopaedic knowledge of manifold sonic traditions is on display here; unified by a staunch discipline, impressive dedication and flat rejection of empty trends.
The results synthesise his tireless timbral research into 11 striking sonic investigations which combine modern studio possibilities with years of performance experience worldwide. An ominous malaise hovers over proceedings; yet it never feels nihilistic, presenting solutions which electrify the listener with ecstatic discovery. The perceptual orchestration therein – from throwing our ears right against the body of the tape machine to flinging them into cavernous space alive with the aurally strange – is both delirious & calming. Noetinger is all too aware things are bad, but his drive for discovery and joyous belief in music somehow coruscates brilliantly through contemporary gloom.
Meticulously recorded & produced with Tobias Levin in Hamburg, Sur quelques mondes étranges presents a detailed & rich vocabulary both real & unreal: gesture & repetition, structure & collapse, familiar & uncanny all dance with each in the most pumping discothèque concrète in this universe. This is a powerful and exacting statement from an elegant composer & extraordinary musician who has humbly dedicated his life to his practice.
– Anthony Pateras