The second volume in Music From Memory’s Music For Dance And Theatre series cherry-picks plunder from a couple of dance instruction sides and one touring performance production. The latter, Scan Lines, was recorded in New York in 1984, by the duo of Belgian saxophonist, John Van Rymenant, and American violinist, Michael Galasso, to accompany Frédéric Flamand`s stage show, The Paradise Of The Artificial Eye. Galasso later went on to collaborate with renowned Hong Kong-based director, Wong Kar-wai. It`s a schizophrenic piece – some 17 minutes long. An electro-acoustic folk freakout, where picked guitar patterns are dive-bombed by swooping, intense, siren-like synths. Electronic birds of prey. Then 6 minutes in it segues / fades into rattling dub techno – 10 years before dub techno existed. Bleeps, chirrups, clicks and whirs, echoed voices, cello and violin, carrying on like countless conversations taking place at once. Creating a mind-fuck meditation that someone stoned will get lost in, before Van Rymenant`s sax shines a light on the way out of the musical maze – finally leaping into a big band swing.
Ray Lynch`s Let’s Jazz LP was privately-pressed in 1982, as a kind of vinyl calling-card, to promote his Stuttgart-based “New York City Dance School”. The MFM crew have lifted the track, Cooking `Til It`s Hot – a cavort of complex counter rhythms, metallic percussion and Wally Badarou-esque keys, tropical, calypso in climate – and which seems to have also been a favourite of switched on Swede Dan Lissvik.
The third piece though is my number one, if forced to choose – Craig Kupka`s composition for Electric Piano, Vibraphone And Percussion, taken from his Modern Dance Technique Environments. Originally released by New Jersey label Hoctor in 1979, it sounds like it could be released on Ghost Box tomorrow. Belbury Poly paying homage to some BBC Radiophonic Workshop rarity. A mix of shore, storm and harpsichord with cosmic Davids Axelrod and McCallum edges. The overall vibe like a 12 minute vamp on Roy Budd`s Hallucinations. Polite pagan psyche haunted by human harmonies, deep in there somewhere.
Music For Dance And Theatre Volume 2 will be released sometime in the very near future care of Music From Memory.
BBC Radiophonic Workshop Rarity