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untitled #12328. untitled #123 [ rec. 2001 ]

> rel. 2002 - CD Alien8 Recordings, Canada ()
Francisco López "Untitled #123" (CD - Alien8 Recordings, 2002)
Announcing our second and latest release with Madrid, Spain's Francisco López. 'Untitled #123' follows the very successful 'Untitled #104', his death metal release, which appeared on Alien8 Recordings just over a year ago.

While 'Untitled #123' is devoid of any connection to metal, it has the same power and intense climaxes found in 'Untitled #104' and in López's live performances.

This latest outing by Spain's most prolific experimental artist was prepared with sounds recorded in Grain Silo #5, in Montreal, Quebec. Last year the experimental duo known as [the user] began the Silophone project, transforming an abandoned grain silo into a gigantic instrument. The project ran for a year and artists from around the world were invited to Montreal to use the instrument. Participants included Aube, Carsten Nicolai, Martin Tetreault, [the user], Jaap Blonk and many others. Without question the year's highlight was the live performance by Francisco López that took place in an abandoned foundry with telephone links to the Silophone. 'Untitled #123' is not simply a recording of López's live performance using the Silophone; the piece uses source material that was harvested in Silo #5 and then further developed at the Centre Création Musicale Iannis Xenakis in Paris, France.

'Untitled #123' starts off with a minute of silence, forcing the listener to pay close attention, like on many of López' recordings. Incredibly subtle changes and fluctuations in volume and body begin to take place. The piece begins to display the Silophone sounds more clearly at the 10-minute mark, dark metallic resonation that feels strangely gothic. This continues until sharp piercing slices of mechanical sounds cut in an out of the piece every few seconds (imagine being subjected to giant blasts of machinery). This continues until the 19-minute mark where all audible sounds dissolve and all that is left is some of the most demanding low-end ambiance one is likely to experience. Later, sounds begin to take shape again and if you were not aware of the sound source you would swear this was the soundtrack to a very dark and frightening place. At the 43-minute mark, with the power constantly mounting your heart pounding, trembling with fear, you wonder what lies ahead. You imagine being in absolute darkness and something incredibly loud, a mechanical drone is approaching and you have absolutely no idea of what it could be. Finally after an incredible 14-minute climax the piece falls into near silence. For the next 8 minutes the piece continues with just a murmur of sound deep below the surface, is it really that low? Are your ears just not picking up sound due to what has just transpired? The end result is an incredibly unique listening experience that bears many of the qualities of the stunning concerts of Francisco López.

As far as we are concerned Francisco López is the reigning king of what is being marketed as lowercase sound and we are incredibly delighted to be documenting another one of his glorious achievements. www.alien8recordings.com - press release (Canada, January 2002)

Francisco López "Untitled #123" (CD - Alien8 Recordings, 2002)
The second Alien 8 album from Madrid experimentalist Francisco López, and one of his most powerful releases to date. One very long piece generated with prepared sounds recorded in Montreal's Grain Silo # 5, some live performance material with the same, and some additional material developed at the Centre Création Musicale Iannis Xenakis in Paris. A powerfully building blend of dark metallic resonation, piercing mechanical sounds, terrifying low-end ambience, and deft use of silence. Packaged in the expected slimline jewel case with next to no artwork. www.midheaven.com (USA, 2002)

Francisco López "Untitled #123" (CD - Alien8 Recordings, 2002)
Like almost all of the Francisco López recordings, silence introduces the album, with the intention of forcing the listener into a state of mind for attentive listening. Of course, with a couple of his records being so barely audible as to render them practically empty, the staging of silence can makes us nervous that this record too is practically empty. Thankfully, we can announce that "Untitled 123" is not silence, and like those López records that are audible, this one too is worth checking out! In 2000, [the user] undertook an daunting installation of transforming an abandoned grain silo in Montreal into a gigantic instrument that could be accessed by anyone around the world via the internet. Since anybody could play the Silophone (by sending real audio files to a computer which broadcast those sounds into the huge resonatings space of the silo, which in turn were bounced back in the form streaming digital audio), it's a little unclear if the sounds that López used were his own or if they included random elements from other people using the Silophone. But it does appear that López was actually recording these sounds while in the space itself, and not just pulling off the net. Anyway, I mentioned that López began this album with silence, but this is disturbed by a distant grey sound which gradually increases in volume. It is not a stationary sound, but one that whips and fluctuates as if caused by moving air, but these do not sound like wind recordings. López then unexpectedly jolts his composition with a series of rhythmic static bursts that are quite unusual for the normal López recording and sound somewhat like the Hafler Trio's early '90s dyptic of sexually explicit recordings, "Fuck" and "Masturbatorium." These tones abruptly stop and the process begins again with another set of grey sounds emerging from the distance; these slightly more nervous with several tightly modulating vibrations extending outward from the silence. This in turn gets louder and louder, with lots of overdubbing sounds of hurricane force blasts of white noise that has all of the transcendent energy of Keiji Haino, but with none of the chords being audible. Again, this comes to an abrupt stop and the album concludes where it started with an extended period of silence. Aquarius Records website (USA, 2003)