David Jackman is the quintessential anti-master fighting the seductive threats of bogus zen. No talking (or, at the very least, words reduced to an indispensable minimum), no enforced indoctrinations, no allusions to universal secrets, no trust whatsoever in spiritual values as profound as a puddle. Selected answers in his rare interviews were enough to understand that my instinctive sympathy with Organum’s work has always been rooted in analogous necessities, which of course cannot be explained by ostentatious chit-chat.
Jackman is not interested in overcrowding the air with sounds, either. Eight years elapsed from Sorow, he breaks muteness with a recording titled after a bird whose calls constitute one of its orchestral elements. The palette also includes two different types of bell, a temple gong and a pair of mighty piano chords previously appeared in Amen and other sections of the trilogy comprising that milestone. Across a unique continuity Jackman distils the principles of individual significance, this time assigning the droning solemnity to the combined resonances of piano and metals while subtracting the strings and the Hammond organ that were defining several parts of the preceding chapters. Sound engineer Alan Jones and Siren’s deus ex machina Daisuke Suzuki are credited as cooperators.
I can listen to Raven day in, day out. The working material may be (deceptively) simple, but the outcome of its assemblage and positioning in the mix is awesome in its unadorned sternness. Behind every strike on the keyboard lies a nucleus of untold intuitions, the extreme synthesis of subconscious comprehension. After those punctuations have scarred silence they return exactly there, escorted by the fading richness of a thousand upper partials. The overall consonance is slightly altered by harmonic “presences” inside the chords, rendering them semi-suspended. They could never be utilized for a classic cadenza, in spite of their “definitive statement” aura; but they are absolutely perfect for what Organum needs to transmit, microscopic variations within the crucial cyclicality of apparent resolution.
“I find that it’s no longer personally acceptable nor in any way desirable to be excessively clogged up with other people’s thoughts”, Jackman once said. His music of today keeps conveying the same feelings rather splendidly.