William Basinski + Richard Chartier

Aurora Liminalis

Aurora Liminalis is the newest collaboration between sonic masterminds William Basinski and Richard Chartier. It is a single track meditation on the art of patience. The transitional phases of this piece move at a snail's pace and many moments are pretty abrasive, but the payoff is huge. It’s a lot like riding a static wave into an unknown abyss. The noisiest moments of the album sound like howling wind rushing through a million Tibetan Singing Bowls in an empty water tank. The most beautiful moments are full of lush swells, mechanical oscillations and subtle melodies. To top it all off, the track ends with the whirling of a tape, giving the track a beautifully analog finish.

Sounds and ideas like this should come as no surprise to the listener, considering who we’re dealing with here. Among the few names that truly hold weight in the world of noise music, William Basinski is certainly a home run hitter. I mean, seriously, this guy is responsible for one of ambient/process music’s most highly revered and adorned pieces (The Disintegration Loops I-IV, of course) that has ever been recorded or released. His earliest releases brought a brand new light to the concept of accidental beauty in experimental music. Forget what you thought you were recording and submit yourself to your project being literally destroyed during creation. I can’t imagine the frustration and panic that he felt while attempting to salvage what he could…but I am equally perplexed by the sheer bliss that happened to be born from the incident.
 
Richard Chartier is also no stranger to fans of experimental art and music. As a contemporary to Basinkski, their work has mirrored itself (and overlapped at least three times now) in many regards. Chartier is the creator of the label responsible for this gem (LINE) which has been releasing music since 2000. He’s had numerous sound installations in various traveling exhibitions and been lucky enough to work with the likes of Linn Meyers and Taylor Deupree. He may not have a name that smacks of pop culture zing, but his career has functioned much like the music he makes: subtle and stunning.  
 
These two men are incredible artists separately, but together they do beautiful things.  This release is a case-in-point example.  Check out LINE's website for info and details.
 
Pete
 

April 18th, 2013