AMM – Sounding Music (2010, Matchless Recordings)

Posted in music by okkame on May 30, 2010



What’s with the album cover? Good grief. These noble, uber-modern intellectuals of Art Music avariciously want to have everything; The last thing to complete the white bohemian: Embracing bespoke orientalism. Anyhoo, it looks good and the music in it sounds excellent so why I have to be sour about it?  Read the (presumed) liner note to decipher this album’s Chinese backbone. There’s no way I’ll peruse it but it looks hella profound and informative from outside. You oughta learn at the very least one thing from it;  About the BIG Chinese letter on the cover.

 : Ming (Korean: Myung) means sound – the cry of a bird, or human singing. A starting-point, then, for words and music both, the fact of sound and its sounding. 

Well, Ming music of AMM is definitely of the West, no matter how (much) you stress on the immanent spirituality of their music. I can almost smell the bread and the butter listening to it and of course, those are of the first water. FYI, this review is rather good. Here’s my pick from it – “This album captures AMM, where AMM are right now, or where they were on the 4th May 2009. It shows a spirit of invention, a challenge to the musicians involved as new musical relationships needed to be forged, and also a sense of playfully creative mischief in the return to the quintet format. The group has always changed, always evolved, often sounded different, but the underlying ethics, the way the music is approached, considered and subsequently played is as strong here as ever.”  You can say that again.

I remember listening to their non-impressive last album but didn’t know Keith Rowe quit already. It doesn’t really matter unless it’s John Tilbury, no? ..John Butcher doozily butchers as usual (a crappy pun. admitted). And one big news: These insipid old sags finally got a chick, moreover she’s relatively young and not ugly.

Back: Cellist Ute Kanngiesser


She has a weird Avant-Garde name to befit music she plays. For the further snobbization: Read An Interview of Christian Wolff, who’s deemed a wild card of AMM. It’s on ever-wonderful BOMB magazine and the interviewer is Damon Krukowski of Galaxy 500 and Damon & Naomi. I really hate music he makes but this Harvard-graduated smarty-pants certainly knows the shit about music and how to shape conversation.

Ming Music Of AMM



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