Henry Cow

Henry Cow: Vol.4 & 5: Trondheim

$16.33 $18.99
Product Type: CD
Artist: Henry Cow

Title: Vol.4 & 5: Trondheim
Label: Rer Megacorp
Product Type: COMPACT DISCS

John Greaves had joined Henry Cow for their Unrest album, replacing founding member/woodwind multi-instrumentalist Geoff Leigh. Trondheim is a recording of the band's May 1976 concert in Trondheim Norway, when Henry Cow was a quartet, immediately after Greaves departure from the band, and without singer Dagmar Krauss, who was too ill to perform at the time. Originally released as discs 4 and 5 in the 40th anniversary box set, Trondheim is probably the most shocking inclusion. As their earlier material could not be performed, and as re-invention was their modus operandi, they decided to perform an entirely improvised set, in the dark and with liberal use of prerecorded tapes [and including bassoonist/oboist Lindsay Cooper]. Unlike many of the shows featured in the collection, Trondheim is presented in it's entirety, clocking in at a little over 90 minutes. The music is some of the group's most adventurous, ranging from stereotypically European pointillism to keyboard-driven proto-industrial densities of overwhelming magnitude. Cutler's notes state that it is a desk recording, though my illicit copy has what seems to be an announcer's voice introducing the group followed by applause. [On the original bootlegs of the release, there was very limited dynamic range, ] all of the textures forming a huge muddle that renders it almost unlistenable. [But] thanks to Drake's careful restoration, the music gains a sense of distance and of perspective, each instrument inhabiting it's own space. The stereo spectrum and dynamic range are also expanded exponentially, the music ebbing and flowing in the concentric waves that must have filled the room during it's performance. The final section, the slowly building Frith composition "March, " makes dynamic sense, both relieving and heightening tension, thanks to the improved soundstage on which it is allowed to breathe. - (excerpted from Dusted Magazine, Sep. 25, 2009)

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