Birds of a Feather – Part 3 – Broken Chip and Simon Whetham
Available at: http://www.flamingpines.com/
The Wonga Pigeon by Broken Chip
Sometimes there are things that I don’t want to end, but then they do, far too soon.* This is how I feel about Broken Chip’s dreamy and elusive The Wonga Pigeon contribution to the latest pair of CD3s released in the Flaming Pines label Birds Of A Feather Series. Broken Chip is one of the musical personas of Martyn Palmer, who is from the Blue Mountains of Australia. Broken Chip has contributed to other Flaming Pines releases, and Palmer’s other nom de plume is Option-Command, for more electronic oriented works. The Wonga Pigeon musically recounts a first mysterious encounter with an unknown bird. Time passed and then the bird reappeared to finally be identified. Despite the presence of (what appear to be) bird calls within the recording, it’s a piano (in my opinion) that takes on the guise of this particular avian creature. All sounds, initially, are distant in the recording, indescribable, and ethereal. Gradually, the identity coalesces, only to disappear back into the ether after a brief second chance encounter.
* – And so, I hit repeat!
The Phoenix by Simon Whetham
The Phoenix is the second CD3 of this latest pair of Birds…, and starts off like a shower of humidity encountered when disembarking from a plane in a distant land—the sudden shock of relocation. The wall of omnipresent sound of the outdoors is from Phoenix Island in Cambodia and at first it is intense (mind your amplifier’s volume control!). Eventually, the body and mind adjusts to this extraordinary new environment, and the sounds around eventually calm, and the vision of what was once like a blinding light comes into focus. Water, wooded areas, bells and gongs can be heard from sound recordings made by Whetham in June, 2012. In a way, the piece starts off with the fervor of the war endured by Cambodia and VietNam not so long ago, and the gradual calming could symbolize the peace that has slowly returned to these environs; The Phoenix rising, symbolically. As with the previous releases in this series, I love the cover illustrations.
Landing Lights by Kate Carr
Also, of note (and I have only heard these samples thus far), I am intrigued by Kate Carr’s latest new album Landing Lights. I quite like the contrast of the growl of her guitar juxtaposed against the soft, floating keyboards as in the track My Brother Came To Stay…I wonder who the brother could be, in the mix? I can’t imagine. ;-) Some samples from Landing Lights are below, so I am definitely interested in hearing more.
My Brother Came To Stay