Master percussionist Pat Mastelotto has always been seeking out new ways in which to further his incredibly diverse canvas of sound. The main reason he's been so damn good at it over the years has a lot to do with the fact that he is a superb improviser, and he always seems to forge musical partnerships and hook up with like minded individuals who are as intent as he is on pushing the envelope into new areas of sound. One such collaboration is this fairly recent project labeled Tunisia which was recorded in two separate sessions in 2006 and 2007 with renowned thereminist Pamelia Kurstin released on CD last year.
On this eclectic sounding disc the duo weave an extremely diverse web of sound that brings together the surprisingly exotic qualities of the theremin, with lush keyboard textures and a plethora of electronic beats and throbbing bass lines. On paper this marriage of sound may look at bit odd, but after one listen you'll be amazed at just how well these sounds come together. Kurstin's exemplary theremin playing is the driving force here and each and every track should be considered standout material. For example the absolutely mournful melody on "The Flower That Never Bloomed" is nothing short of captivating. The sounds she coaxes out of the instrument on this track as well as "Our Green Adventure" makes it feel like you are listening to some sort of wonderful and exotic, middle eastern operatic vocal. "Annunciation of an Angel" also features some beautifully subtle playing from both musicians. You can revel in the delicate synth washes that caress your ears overtop the simplistic bass lines and Matelotto's minimalist electronic percussion, while Kurtsin recites the poetry of famed Austrian writer Rainer Maria Rilke.
As he so often does Pat throws everything including the kitchen sink into the mix on this recording. Whether he's laying down a gloriously funky beat on the acoustic kit on "The Use Of Black", making furious beatbox sounds on "Waiting At The Window" or tearing into some serious Photek style drums 'n bass beats on the ten minute epic "I'll Have Another One...That's Enough For Now", his signature sound is all over this excellent sonic potpourri.
Hard to pin this one down as far as where it fits genre wise, but after you make your way through this recording it will seem pretty inconsequential in the end. If you've followed Pat's career over the years and have enjoyed his collaborations with artists such as Markus Reuter in Tuner and Trey Gunn in TU/KTU, then you should seriously consider obtaining a copy of this exceptional recording.
1) I Am A House Pet
2) The Use Of Black
3) The Flower That Never Bloomed
4) Our Green Adventure
5) Annunciation Of An Angel
6) Waiting At The Window
7) I'll Have Another...That's Enough For Now
8) Generated Divinity (medenine ghorfas)
9) Seven Tears