Cosmic Pluralism

Largely acoustic improvisation with a little bit of electronics+digital in the mix, from Eventless Plot…this combo of Greek players from Thessaloniki, Vasilis Liolios, Aris Giatas and Yiannis Tsirikoglou are supplemented by various guest players on Parallel Worlds (ANOTHER TIMBRE at163), their new release from the fine UK label Another Timbre who specialise in presenting this kind of pared-down, austere and somewhat minimal style of performing…three long tracks of contemplative, slightly mournful music await ye here.

On ‘Cosmographia’, we have the string players Stefanos Papadimitrou, Yiorgis Petropoulos and Dimitris Stefanou creating a haunting, steady drone with unearthly precision, occasionally punctuated by judicious plucks; Vasilis Liolios plays the psaltery adding a further melancholy continuum to these sad strains. If cosmography is indeed the science of mapping the universe, our Greek surveyors have returned from their task and report that they’re not too happy with what they found. Margarita Kapagiannidou’s clarinet appears sparingly, perhaps dotted around as legends on this strange map of the world.

The title track ‘Parallel Worlds’ is supplemented by the excellent flute work of Eva Matsigou and core player Aris on the piano, and guest Dutch cellist Jan Willem Troost; two electronics players here, but they are barely audible and the acoustic instruments remain upfront, and the general plan is to insist on very slow-moving, short phrases which overlap in an extremely polite manner. If there are two or more “worlds” intersecting here, they manage to do so without much friction or agitation. The piece ‘Conversion’ simplifies things even further, with the core trio now electing to play simply percussion instruments (with added contact mics), one of them doing it with a bow; Papadimitrou’s unobtrusive viola is given plenty of room, but he doesn’t exactly hog the road. Real purity of tone on this one, but less successful in terms of telling a musical story, if that is the aim.

We have heard Eventless Plot before on Recon, where they seemed to be keen on playing up their group anonymity a bit, though still remaining in melancholy terrains and exploring the electro-acoustic improv thing in their own manner; and on Structures in 2014, where our reviewer noted the care and deliberation with which they assemble their sounds. This poise is indeed welcome, but sometimes leads to a deficiency of excitement. From 17 September 2020.

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