Angélica Castelló Ι Maja Osojnik – Blockflöten
recorded at echoraum, January 2006
recording and mixing: Alfred Reiter
Low Frequency Orchestra
New things often emerge through a quivering aggregation of people, who, while aware of their attraction, are yet incapable of defining it. The utopian potential hidden in this coalescence can – in the case of (improvising) musicians – only be tapped by gathering, unwrapping the instruments and starting to play. A kind of „improvisation without history“: The emerging sound configurations can become the „urtext“ of a new ensemble and thereby constitute the beginning of a new musical entity. Whenever the Low Frequency Orchestra, which was founded in 2003, enters the stage, a fascinating journey through the orbit of sounds begins. Here you meet an ensemble that forms a musical organism precisely through the emphasis on individuality and its transcendence, engaging the listener with an organic music created in the collective. The Low Frequency Orchestra, living up to its name, pays ribute to low sounds with noble honor. Four notedly bass instruments – 2 Paetzold contrabass recorders, 2 double-basses – define the dark, melodious terrain. The two flutists Angélica Castelló and Maja Osojnik, both originally at home with Renaissance and Baroque music, play an exceptionally unique role. They are committed (fortunately they are not alone in this endeavor) to blast recorders out of their often ascribed contexts as instruments for preschoolers or with an early music pathos, instead exploring the multifarious potential of this instrument, thereby integrating it into contemporary music forms. Unwanted, unloved, and unsuitable for classical music, recorders seem to be experiencing a new prime in contemporary music and improvisation. (This can also serve to show the proximity of early music and art music of the 20th and 21st century. It is not a coincidence that one of the two best contemporary lute players, Paul Odette, originally mauled the electric guitar.) The two double-basses, mastered with virtuosity by Matija Schellander and Herwig Neugebauer, prove themselves to be congenial partners to the low flutes. Through the subtle utilization of percussion (Matthias Koch) and intricate use of electronics (Thomas Grill), together with an occasional insertion of high flutes, the deep sounds are mirrored dialectically from time to time, the high frequencies pointing intuitively to their deep siblings. The deepness unlocks by integrating the high tones. In spite of the complexity, there is always an etherealness; despite the fragility of the single elements, a striking coherence emerges. All these components, not least the vibrancy of their stage performance, pronounce the Low Frequency Orchestra one of the most remarkable and noteworthy improvisation ensembles in the country. Franco Evangelisti and his composition-improvisation group, „Nuova Consonanza“, dreamt of an improvisation-based, highly artificial art music created in an egalitarian manner. The Low Frequency Orchestra realizes this in the most elegant way.
Burkhard Stangl, August 2005