The explicit dedication to the late Tony Conrad – defined by Werner Durand as the main influence behind this work – should not deceive anyone into thinking of a sudden conversion to the rawer extremes of drone-based investigation. On the contrary, Schwingende Luftsäulen is another substantiation of Durand’s wonder for the primary element of transmission of any form of vibration, the air. Or, perhaps, the air attuned to unusual upper partial trajectories.
Amidst the plethora of invented instruments this man has grown us accustomed to, the Pan-Ney stands as one of the most interesting. The tubes that shape it up must be nourished through an oblique position of the performer’s mouth, thus adding a pinch of technical mystery to the impossible-to-resist charm of the resulting sonorities (subsequently multiplied – we surmise – by a chain of delays or analogous mechanisms of reiteration).
These seven tracks appear as veritable studies in the gentlest qualities of an oscillating molecular microcosm. In turn, they lull our cognitive state into standby mode via stratified/stretched tones, or suggest propulsive figurations enhancing the implicit periodicity of a psychophysical integrity. Ultimately they epitomize the dateless dance of the vibrating particles across an auditive machinery that is too often left without oil by human beings always inclined towards other acceptations of the term “acquisition”.
Musicians exist whose talent for making all things sound natural also represents a gift for minds (and, why not, bodies) overburdened by an ever-growing fatigue. Durand belongs to this category. With the passage of time, his reliability as a purveyor of soothing acoustic environments has been officially certified; this record renews the stamps while offering a way out from the oppressive cohabitation with unintelligent egotism.