Catastrophe Point #9 & #10 (2xCD. Oral Records : Canada 2013)

Disc One : Catastrophe Point #9
sound materials recorded at Silo no.5
Montreal, Canada, June 24th, 2012

Disc Two : Catastrophe Point #10
sound materials recorded at Closed Tunnel
Montreal, Canada June 19th, 20th, 2012

Design / Photographs : Kiyoharu Kuwayama
(P) ORAL 56
(C) Kiyoharu Kuwayama 2012
fabriqueL au QueLbec


LETHE - CATASTROPHE POINT #9 & #10 (2CD by Oral)

Rather than being a composer of music, or someone who does field recordings, or someone who builds installation pieces, Kiyoharu Kuwayama, also known as Lethe, is a man who creates site specific music. For him the space in which he is to create music is as important as anything else. Well, perhaps besides having a pair great microphones. But drag Lethe into an abandoned industrial site, an empty metro station, tunnels or something equally cavernous, and he will produce some music. I gather he takes very little with him in terms of tools, but a bow or two might surely one of them. In June 2012 he was in Montreal and performed on two different locations.

The first is at Silo no. 5 where we find a permanent installation by Emmanuel Madan (of The User) in the harbor of Montreal, where Lethe choose to play the upper floor. The microphone is somewhere so we hear the large reverb of this space. The sound sources were found on the spot, and consist of metal sheets and rubber detritus.

Number ten of the Catastrophe Series was recorded in a tunnel, built in 1931, but closed since long. It was, despite the hot weather, very cold inside. It's not clear what he plays here. In both of these pieces (#9 consists of two parts) we hear the large reverb of the spaces, and Lethe playing around with sound proportions of these places, by using waste material.

It may sound like there is a fair portion of reverb used, but such is not the case. It's hard to classify this as field recordings, I think. Perhaps, in a way, it is field recordings, but of course it's someone playing sounds in a large hall, so perhaps 'music' is a better word. If nothing would happen in these spaces, then surely not much have been recorded? So, sound art perhaps, acoustic space research? I would rather think of this in musical terms: here we have two pieces, of around forty-five minutes, which sound great. Highly mysterious, almost like the soundtrack of a horror movie (especially in 'Catastrophe Point #10'),and moving very slowly around the place, but never leaps into mere repeating of sounds. Very much like a continuous stream this, and maybe its a cliche, but also very zen like. Excellent release, once again. (FdW)