ei concerts xi records phill niblock experimental intermedia

  Alan Licht
A New York Minute

Disc 1: Studio
  1. A New York Minute (15:17)
  2. Freaky Friday (19:23)
  3. Muhammed Ali & the Crickets (6:41)
  4. Another Sky (5:31)
Disc 2: Live
  1. 14, Second, Fifth (37:21)
  2. Remington Khan (³Hearing Test² mix/12-string version) (38:48)

Alan Licht wears many hats. Over the years, he's been a curator of music as well as a tireless performer. And he's as well-known an author as he is a musician. It's one thing to have eclectic tastes; it's another to make a practice of them. While Licht's earlier records have seamlessly melded his improvisational guitar playing with extended plundered sounds, A New York Minute takes things a few steps further. Instead of fusing the many sides of Licht into one monolithic mega-mix, this disc separates them into discreet compositions. There's a lot more at stake here: the guitar pieces are showcased as guitar pieces and the plundered works are just that. The conceptual tendencies in Licht no longer hide behind his talent as a guitarist; likewise, the guitar pieces are no longer propped on hooky concepts that take our attention away from his fretwork. The good news is that both work: Licht is as strong a conceptual artist as he is a composer. (Kenneth Goldsmith, liner note writer)

A New York Minute lasts 2 CDs long: the title track consists of compiled, multi-tracked weather-reports from everyday in January 2001 in the city. Well, there we got our addictive quality of a repetition of the same but not quite the same. In the differences, those slots and gaps we fill in our desire, in that mood between active and passive in a sort of state of weakness lies sensuality, fluidity, moments of lust whatever. There is nothing we can do about the weather. But it is the most basic piece of information everybody takes in and processes all the time. And why not transformation in a minute or so, becoming part of it all. "Remington Khan" the longest track of all, recorded live, functions as a purely musical companion to "A New York Minute". It keeps going and going goes on and on till you feel the boundaries of consciousness, pushing you forward, softly. Restrained, full of weird little moments, feelings, small sound patterns, that build up. Somewhere in there a kind of singing. An odd kind of expression of a collective voice. A perfect deep deadpan moment. "14 Second Fifth," the other live track, is a loop that lasts 14 seconds, of a perfect fifth (pitch internal). "Another Sky" is pure calm, balm, yet within the realm of the unpredictable, causing a heightened attentiveness in the listener. Patterns reversing patterns, very subtle shifts and balances, made out of multi-tracked chord organ (one of those portable organs with an electric motor). Becoming organ. It ends on a very light note, but will resonate for a while. (Jutta Koether, liner note writer)

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