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Plus Forty Seven Degrees 56' 37" Minus Sixteen Degrees 51' 08"

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Album Review

On Plus Forty Seven Degrees 56' 37" Minus Sixteen Degrees 51' 08, Fennesz is concerned with creating extremely dense and enveloping sound textures, essentially forgoing rhythmic or melodic development. The CD comes in an impressive cardboard slipcase adorned with photographs of nature colliding with technology, and a similar aesthetic prevails in the music. Fennesz seems interested in exploring electronic sound at an almost a molecular level, and the result is a complex, organic, and at times very beautiful noise. "Track 5" (there are no song titles) is the most challenging music here, consisting of deep, almost cello-like drones intertwined with extremely harsh static. There is a palpable tension between the two elements on this track that might remind some of a more avant-garde and (it must be said) abrasive version of My Bloody Valentine. "Track 4" displays Fennesz' virtuosity with microtonal manipulation, as tiny fragments of sound, possibly sampled guitar harmonics, seem to vibrate in place and undergo subtle variations with time. "Track 7" may incorporate some sort of field recordings into the mix, as atmospheric, industrial noises are blended with jarring guitar distortion. An interest in noise music is necessary, but those so inclined will find Plus Forty Seven Degrees 56' 37" Minus Sixteen Degrees 51' 08" to be a challenging and rewarding album of abstract beauty.

Biography

Born: 25 December 1962 in Vienna, Austria

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Vienna-based guitarist Christian Fennesz is one of the city's many artists associated with the noted Editions Mego label, which releases mostly free-form ambient and experimental electronica. Similar in some respects to the work of Seefeel or Experimental Audio Research, Fennesz's six-string soundscapes are both darker than the former and more complex and intricate than the latter, combining dense, multi-layered sheets of treated guitar and synth with thin, odd-metered electronic percussion and engaging...
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Plus Forty Seven Degrees 56' 37" Minus Sixteen Degrees 51' 08", Fennesz
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