Philipp Rumsch Ensemble – μ: of transfiguration x resonance

Posted: 11 July 2022 in Singles and EPs
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Nynode Intermedia – 27th May 2022

Christopher Nosnibor

In case it needed restating, the pandemic really dig screw everything up for everyone. I’m not even going to go there again now.

As the press release that accompanies this new EP from Philipp Rumsch Ensemble, the Leipzig based composer, pianist and sound designer Philipp Rumsch and his twelve-piece ensemble ‘had the finger on the pulse when they released their concept album μ: of anxiety x discernment.’

Anxiety peaked globally barely a month later, and the world was held in the grip f panic for the best part of the subsequent two years.

The album, ‘recorded partly with the use of a special binaural recording technique to create a three-dimensional soundstage…was praised by Electronic Sound, BBC, NDR and many more. Furthermore, the release assured the band’s recognition being one of the most exciting large ensembles in Europe.’

But you can’t lug a large ensemble round Europe when it’s locked down and there’s travel chaos and no-one knows what the hell’s going on, and it’s not easy to collaborate with international artists other than digitally either. But, two years in the making, it’s finally landed: ‘the rework EP μ: of transfiguration x resonance is finally seeing the light of the day. Four artists / collectives contemplating on the album’s material from different points of view by deconstructing the core material and putting it together in new ways. The prestigious lineup consists of musicians and sound artists from the ensemble’s creative environment. Jana Irmert (collaborations with, i.a., Jóhann Jóhannsson), Shramm aka Jörg Wähner (Apparat, Bodo Bill, Dieter Meier and many more), Moritz Fasbender (the most recent project of musician Friederike Bernhardt) and the string trio Toechter (Lisa Marie Vogel, Katrine Grarup Elbo and Marie-Claire Schlameus) each contributed one track’.

I’m almost inclined to steep back and applaud the fact they’ve simply done it, and that’s not sarcasm. As a taster, Jana Irmert’s ‘Echo’ is being released as a single.

There’s something quite intriguing in the very concept of a single from a work like this, and it challenges the conventional function of a single in some respects. At heart, the single over many years has served as – primarily – a promotional tool to shift album units, by providing a snippet of the album that shows its best side, so to speak. Historically, it was released in the hope of achieving radio or other coverage, or even a chart position, to boost album sales. And perhaps this will also do that: after all, the soft, undulating organ drones and soft wafts of analogue synth, and trilling oboe, amidst the sounds of winds and waves are soporific and mesmerising in their slow atmospherics. It’s soft and appealing, and so, so agreeable. In these troubled times, we need more untroublesome music, and this fits that bill.




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