Sunday, 23 May 2010

PÅL ASLE PETTERSEN – Komposisjoner 2005-2008


Pettersen, born in 1975, is a Norwegian electroacoustic assembler and a renowned activist of the local avant scene. He achieves most of his stimulating sounds via regular objects and homemade stuff, apparently randomized in unpredictable fashion. Yet, if one’s attentive enough, the man also provides a structural intelligibility that facilitates the act of listening from beginning to end. There are no actual titles to these pieces, since they’re distinguished only with numbers; this tells a lot about the composer’s will of presenting the audience with factual concreteness as opposed to ineffectual drifting.

If something must be said a propos of these materials is that they sound extremely good: carefully assembled and masterfully mixed, each plot putting both the fine details and the general development under an ideal light, the single elements logically connected for brains attempting to take an overall aural impression in. In terms of timbre, we’re often spanning through a distinctive sort of granular disintegration of particles that never degenerates into stupid chaos and the presence of secretive extra-low hums from the underground (a wonderful one is heard at the start of “Komposisjon 20”) and faintly vacillating static essences (“Komposisjon 16”), probably derived from something more normal than we think, opportunely processed in the studio. Seemingly, some work on pre-recorded tapes was done, too. A cold-blooded potion of altered regularity and unhinged meticulousness characterizing this excellent release in its entirety, a unique musicality living in misleadingly unmusical matters.