Caution: Sharp Edges

In my hands I hold the second release by Ros Bobos, called Unchartered Universal Euphoria (NO NUMBER CD, 2006). He appears to be one Andrew Hannah from New Hampshire, a part of New England sitting pretty on the Massachusetts border. I received his earlier release many years ago in the late 1990s, and a most delightfully befuddling listening experience it was too. This singular chap does use cut-ups (I think), but not in a way that you or I are remotely familiar with; I have memories of a very dense sound-art construct, only tangentially connected with music. While the sleeve art to this new one, featuring a collage of men with the heads of snakes and the wings of birds, may lead you to expect something in the Vicki Bennett or Stan Reed mode, I suspect Bobos is after something much more elusive. Certainly looking forward to unsealing this one and hearing the track ‘Jesse Chainsaw Hyungau’. Can you imagine anything that could live up to a title like that?

Nice looking CD in the box with a black cover illuminated by a single star. It’s called (subject unknown) and it’s by The Retail Sectors in Japan. I’d like to get more things from Japan, because the envelopes (bearing evidence of their passage through time and space) always intrigue me. For one thing, the Japanese Customs declaration form is much more elegant than ours. This parcel arrived from Kentaro Togawa who wrote ‘Symbolic Interaction’ on the back of the envelope, perhaps intending to communicate something of his desire for reciprocal interchange of a mutually beneficial nature between himself and The Sound Projector. He describes himself as an apathetic Japanese boy. Well, if he wants apathetic, he’s come to the right place. He may or may not be based in Kyoto and some experts describe his music as having elements of Radiohead and Philip Glass. I’ll let you know if this observation proves accurate.

Lastly, from Rider University Gallery comes a fairly ‘extreme’ package. It probably contains two CDs, but I can’t be sure as they’re mounted in a contraption about the size of a US CD longbox made of layers of plywood and sheet metal, held together with small bolts. It’s called Music From an Exhibition and the package documents an event compiled by Dr James Dickinson. On the ‘cover’, there’s a nice image of a sculpture by Alison Kuby Netz, who makes some intriguing metal figurative artworks which also boast articulated movements – hence the term ‘kinetic sculpture’. This all looks groovy stuff, so I’ve got fairly high hopes for this one – and will revel in the sonic delights once my local engineer arrives with his toolbox to help me unfasten the bolts. Dr Dickinson also asked for advice on Derek Bailey records, including the Incus Taps CD. Does anyone know if this is still available?


  1. The landscape here in the United States is unfortunately littered with those, especially academics, who have perished trying to open the cd box for Music From An Exhibition. However, this was not the original intent of this project which was to make available the music composed for a sculpture exhibition at Rider Univerity Gallery. So a cautionary note here. Should the esteemed presenter of The Sound Projector survive its undoing, he will find inside the contraption the original musical contributions by Russell Collins (who at the time was a student of composition at Rider) and KK Null from Japan which accompanied the kinetic sculptures of Kuby Netz. The liner notes explain it all. I hope he eventually gets that far. (Hint: no special tools required.) In the spirit of transatlantic cooperation then, and to compensate for any blood that may have been spilled in Blighty on my account or those who contributed to this project, I can make a couple of copies of Music from An Exhibition available should anyone be ‘unhinged’ enough to ask for one.

  2. I’m pretty sure our intent with that packaging, James, was to make sure that people exerted the proper effort to ‘get into’ the music – since the discs were given away freely, we wanted to make sure people payed with their blood. Sand down the edges, said you – Bah, says I!

    ’twas great fun to make. -j.

  3. Goodness, John, I thought you had perished on the production floor. Someone must have called an ambulance. No takers for the free copies as yet. Does that mean people are afraid, or do all participants in this thread already have one? By the way, check out the site for Resonance 104.4 FM. There doesn’t seem to be anything like that around here. I am going to see if I can get it via my computer.
    From the Office Above, JMD

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