quite ashamed to say that I was totally unaware of the work of Arthur
Jarvinen, including his work with the California E.A.R. Unit. And I
would have remained unaware, save for the fact that we both know composer
and bassist extraordinaire Jack Vees.
Records is Jarvinen's personal imprint - a place where he can put out
projects that are obviously "uncommercial" - but that I think
are unique enough to deserve a listen. You could be surprised!
last year, Sgt. Pekker - does it remind you of something? - was a project
dedicated to - you guessed it - The Beatles. Definitely not a pastiche,
the album presented a series of melodic themes, lyrics and characters
which "closely resembled" some very famous records by that
group, along the way adding comments and other material. A subtle, affectionate
work, Sgt. Pekker obviously needed the right background to be really
understood - and fully appreciated.
Bummer suffers for the same reason, albeit in a minor way. Composed
by Jarvinen, mostly played by Miroslav Tadic - who played all the guitars,
and recorded, mixed and produced the whole work - Endless Bummer sounds
to me like a memory (or a meditation?) of some typical sixties themes,
with the guitars timbres pointing in the general direction of surf,
though the structure of Part One (at 24', the longest of the three of
which the piece is made of) points in the general direction of a bizarre
mutational kind of minimalism, where timbres, echoes and volumes make
for a kind of "narrative". (Sounds strange, uh? Well, wait
til you hear the Hammond Solovox on Part Two!) I simply liked these
pieces quite a bit - they can appear "elementary" but there's
a kind of maturity that is really apparent, provided one gives them
the right attention.
Beppe Colli 2003
| Sept. 7, 2003