Retrieval Of Two Small Gems By Philip Halke

Works by a gentleman from Greece who – two years ago – sent me a couple of 3-inch CDs of legitimate acousmatic music, re-discovered today in a corner of my archive. Yet another example of what happens when the amount of packets becomes overwhelming: excellent recordings get misplaced, and I’m exchanged for a bad-mannered bastard who doesn’t care about people.

PHILIP HALKE – The Two Edges

“A Place That I Said Goodbye To” begins with a stratification of frequencies, a “luminously obscure” moan enhancing a series of sensibly positioned field recordings and assorted micro-occurrences. Gradual spreading of different pitches, absorbing juxtapositions and intelligent use of dynamics; interruptions of the flux introducing minor variations, anguishing vocal resonances, complemented by cavernous thumps and creepy noises. A cleverly conceived, very good soundscape. “Beyond Movement An Animal, Beyond An Animal The Sound” was meant to be an interactive performance in which the sounds are directly controlled by the dancer. The cross of natural timbres (water, birds, bells and the likes), electronic hues and (just imaginable) choreographic designs introduces a degree of rhythmic variation, but ultimately the whole appears as a typical, and also well made, episode of musique concrete with much soul and less ominous than the previous chapter, despite the “drone-with-wolves” final incident.

PHILIP HALKE – Above The Din

The preliminary concept is the progressive obliteration of environmental characters (with which the piece starts as cows, roosters and other bucolic emissions rupture an almost total silence) by the noise of what’s gradually submerging our existence (cars, electric/industrial hum, jets), preceded by the symbolic snippet of a funeral march. By now this is a lost battle unless you decide to live in remote seclusion, and not even so one is sure of not being acoustically molested. Halke, who’s got a specialization in Arts and Technologies, confirms his capability in the management of the sources, letting the listeners experience large amounts of cerebral respite besides subjecting them to the laws dictated by stronger powers, those currently succeeding in the termination of this planet, not only in terms of “din”. Hats off to the man’s clean ears, lack of pretension and willingness to test himself in a jam-packed area, with lots of merits. These creations come with a certification of soberness and honesty.

Self-Released [philiphalke(at)ymail(dot)com]

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