Thursday, April 01, 2010

Review: New Music At Emu #2: Robert Curgenven and Tristan Louth-Robins

Last Sunday I went to the second concert in the New Music At EMU series. The sound artist Robert Curgenven presented his only concert in Adelaide and was supported by EMU's own Tristan Louth-Robins.

Tristan performed first, presenting a pleasant mix of field recordings, sonic manipulations and slow-moving, thoughtful melodic elements within the context of laptop performance. I have seen Tristan perform a number of times, and I have to say that the material he presented in this set (all of which was new) is my favourite of his work so far. Very well composed and executed, his work has a strong sense of sonic subtlety whereby beautiful audio landscapes are built up over time, and straddle the lines between sound art, performance and pop aesthetic.

Robert's performance was more manual and hands on than Tristan's in the sense that the sound artist did not make use a computer or laptop, and instead relied on technology such as multiple CD players for audio playback of his material. The performance consisted of the mixing and mangling of multiple audio sources in real time. His set was both powerful and somehow soothing, in the sense that the audience can simply 'let go' and surrender to a torrent of sonic energy. An excellent set.

All in all, the evening was inspirational, and I want to thank Robert and Tristan for playing. Adelaide needs more of this!