Monday, 9 October 2017

Martin Glass - The Pacific Visions of Martin Glass / Ursula Bogner - Winkel Pong

The concept album (ask your granddad) lives. That's not something I ever thought I'd say with any kind of relish, but fear not, The Pacific Visions of Martin Glass is a million miles away from anything made in the conceptual pomp heyday of the 70s. Back then we invented Punk as an antidote. Today, in the post-modern era, it's OK to say your album's about an American businessman who 'falls under the hypnotic spell of the Pacific.' Mind you, how seriously we should take that story is another matter although at one point someone does welcome 'Mr Glass' to the Four Seasons hotel. Glass is an appropriate name given the hypnotic, repetitive nature of Reach The Beach. Far from being content to simply hit the 'minimalist' button though, Glass adds fine detail that makes the whole album worth replaying. If Les Baxter had made an album with Ryuichi Sakamoto it might have sounded like this. I think that's a compliment.

If Ursual Bogner hadn't existed someone would surely have made her up, such is the inevitability of this space-age electronic music, orbiting as it does the earthbound oast house genius of the UK's Daphne Oram and her former employees, the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Perhaps Peter Thomas should get a mention too. And Tom Dissevelt. Oram and Dissevelt are well-recognised today, but Bogner's history remains elusive (until that academic writes her history, as he surely will). Meanwhile, Winkel Pong is another tantalising glimpse into the purified electronic realm Bogner inhabited, emitting crisp, clean analog signals as it does, irresistibly to these ears. Worth a mention is what sounds like a flugelhorn on Atmosphärische Energie, a nice touch. This little taster bubbles and bleeps away like that friendly household robot you will have in the future, with a suggestion of menacing undertones on Feldspat to suggest it might burn your eye out with a laser beam if you upset it. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...