ARANOS [2001] MAGNIFICENT! MAGNIFICENT! NO ONE KNOWS THE FINAL WORD



About: "65 minute CD features double bass, violoncello, viola, violin, guitar, mandola, Bechstain and Steinway pianos, percussion, live and sampled drums, sounds recorded in Bavaria and Czech Republic amongst other places. Mezzo-soprano May-Britt Mitrovic contributes vocals on "In Soft Cavities". Regardedretarded - a three piece band recorded "Life in Bernard's Kitchen" live in Bernard's kitchen. Although there are 15 tracks they flow continuously without pauses or rather they are connected by a theme reappearing in different guises."
- Brainwashed

"At first listen, I was a bit disappointed by this Aranos release, mostly because of the repetitious string sounds which commonly open several tracks. But it definitely is one of these albums which grows on you, as a unity of sound and theme, emerging from a well-balanced tracklist. At times it reminds me of his first collaboration with Nurse With Wound, 'Acts of Senseless Beauty', with unexpected sounds jumping in the middle of bass, cello, viola, violin, guitar, or mandolin layers. No surprise, you'll probably not dance on every track, but may certainly nod on various songs, thanks to colorful rhythms which lead back to the cello or piano chords pulsing all along the record. More than strings or piano, the side elements are the most efficient ? a wide variety of gentle percussions, and the haunting voice, which I find even too scarce. "Spirit Fragrance" arrives like a big surprise ? a faster-paced song in a style reminiscent of Emir Kusturica and the No Smoking Orchestra. It's tracks like these where it becomes obvious that Aranos isn't lying on the resume about his extensive musical background. A complete contrast to this, the disc's closer is a long, minimal piece of meditative music, consisting of lengthy tones often made out of percussions with subtle crumpling sounds in the background. More surprising than the music itself is its "experimental anarchy distribution" system. It will quickly be shipped to you from Aranos himself, under conditions that I'll let you discover on his website. It comes in a beautiful hand-made paper cover (made in Nepal under fair-trade agreement) with bamboo strip details and a hemp tie. This can sound strange, but really makes it."
- Bruce Henry

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