SUSAN MATTHEWS – A Kiss For The Umbrella Man

Quiet World

Where for “Umbrella Man” Matthews means “Erik Satie”, who was extremely fond of that particular object. In about 23 minutes (intelligent decision), subdivided in seven tracks, snippets of celebrated works by the renowned composer are altered, cut, speeded up or slowed down, spiced with sub-bass and other types of moderately displacing frequencies, or even short fragments taken from an answering machine. At first, an accelerated version of “Gymnopedies” (renamed “Ouvrez La Tête”) had me thinking of some sort of sick joke, but when the subsequent chapters start diffusing their aromas in somewhat askew tranquillity, a couple of listens is enough to appreciate the combination of love for the original and slightly bizarre twisting of an otherwise peaceful acoustic environment. This was a dangerous move – too many reworkings of famous music have brought loads of rubbish on us in the past – however in this circumstance the outcome is more than acceptable, an elegant yet quirky offer by an artist I was not acquainted with before.

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