PLATE LUNCH catalog #: PL15-Skun07
Oren Ambarchi - Stacte.3 (LP, ltd. to 500 copies) - released September 2000
Total running time: 36:56
Oren Ambarchi is a Sydney based artist who has been active in both local and international scenes for over 10 years. A passionate enthusiast for all musical styles, he has performed in a multitude of recordings and concerts. Often playing alongside other Sydney musicians, Oren sits comfortably in any chosen audio medium. Noise, pop, improvisations, games and somewhat extreme live performances have all played a role in Ambarchi's active career. A number of years work performing alongside long time musical associate Rob Aveniam resulted in the sublime Alter Rebbe's Niggun release on Tzadik last year.
Recently moving into more solo affairs, a series of limited and perplexing solo guitar records have been released under the "Stacte" banner. These saw a new side to Ambarchi's work, indulging in a love for concrète techniques and spontaneous electronics (all with guitar), which brings us to INSULATION.....
INSULATION was made with just a guitar and without computer processing/editing and does not sound like a guitar - (!) Oren seems determined to limit himself to the guitar, which is his favourite tool (minus all the cliches that tag along with this), however, with the intention of expanding the sound of this instrument to a sonic world well beyond what we are accustomed. Atmosphere plays a key role in all tracks on INSULATION.
Oren's sound world is one of subtle twists which leads to a discreet display of broken/unusual electronic repetition. The entire CD shifts along a in a hazy/blurred mode which at times resembles something of a digital take on Morton Feldman. There is a distinctive isolated narrative which may be familar to those who have heard previous releases from other Australians as Matthew Thomas or the "Wire Music" releases of outback hero Alan Lamb. Never instrusive, Ambarchi's electronics are consistant in their subtle dynamics and textural qualities. Abstraction, improvisation, chaos and order is always at play with repetition hinted and often revealed, but never relied upon. Its a fine balance between old school concrète dynamics and new school atmospherics which is the essence upon which he has focused, when so many raver types have simply forgotten life prior to 1977, Ambarchi embraces all forms and thoughts and comes up with something fresh and insightful. It is a highly listenable experience, which is in stark contrast to the bombastic nature of much early electronic experiments (not to mention guitar experiments which is the source of this unique sound world).
INSULATION contains 3 collaborative works with Adelaide sound artist Matthew Thomas who has being at the forefront of Australian abstract electronic music since the release of his debut CD "Architecture" 3 years ago. He has also released the follow up "Re-modulation" on the Australian label, Dorobo.
from: mdos.at, Sept 2001
His album on Touch was a stunner in dreamterms... this LP kicks off with Riley alike bells mixed with typical Touch soundings. Another tracks starts out very droney while the background slowly builds up like Novisad on 10rpm. Side B kicks off in a Birchville Cat Motel way only to settle down in very dark ambient piece. Brilliant sleeve tops this album. TIP!
from: KRAAK, October 2000, reviewed by: BR