Friday, September 04, 2009
More Is More.
Watching a head-on single shot video of an ensemble can be pretty boring unless it's a head-on single shot video of Carsten Nicolai and Ryuichi Sakamoto with the Ensemble Modern backed by Carsten's images. Then it can be pretty damn fabulous. The DVD is included in a beautifully designed package with the CD UTP. If I was filthy rich, the first thing I would do would be to commission Nicolai to make a room for me: walls, floor, ceiling, air. Done.
As I've said before, Sakamoto works best in collaboration, and his work with Nicolai is some of the best music either one of them have ever made. The wider canvas provided by the ensemble could have led to disaster, but it doesn't. The music moves from less to more with aplomb, the musicians pushing the composers into Krautrock at one point and not-so-simply changing the shape of their studio sound in others. Augment. Restructure. Move forward. You know, the usual with these two.