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Plonsey, Dan / Portcullis
Album:Portcullis Collection:General
Artist:Plonsey, Dan Added:08/2004
Label:Unlimited Sedition 

A-File Activity
Add Date:2004-10-04 Pull Date:2004-12-06 
Week Ending:5 Dec21 Nov7 Nov31 Oct24 Oct17 Oct10 Oct
Airplays:1121234

Recent Airplay
1.Wed, 13 Jan 10:Luke
Customary Surprise
4.Wed, 01 Dec 04:Alex
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2.Fri, 04 May 07:Wedge
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5.Sun, 14 Nov 04:smurph
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3.Fri, 02 Jun 06:Wedge
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6.Fri, 05 Nov 04:Wedge
Still No Cover, No Minimum

Album Review
Gabe
Reviewed 2004-09-28 
Dan Plonsey’s “Music for 18 Musicians”. A sprawling hour-long continuous composition that is based on various subsets of the 18 musicians carrying a charmingly lumbering and slightly shambolic melody in unison as other grouplets make minor adjustments to same. Big chords are hardly ever in sight. Everything is built up note by note in time and the effect is sort of a neat trick whereby you can easily follow the main theme at every moment but there’s always this distracting but interesting counterpoint (which is not a harmony). OK, IANAC (I am not a composer) so there’s probably a pithy term for what I described but Plonsey himself wants you to hear this without preconceptions, thus dubbing it “Music of El Cerrito”. OK. Good stuff.

1. Overture of sorts; strings particularly prominent
2. Establishing the theme; sort of long and a bit samey
Play the next two together:
3. Sudden burst of horns and the theme shifts to a more lively section
4. Continuation and elaboration of track 3
5. Lightness in the melody and arrangement continue
6. Descending scales over a warbly, whirling keyboard figure; circuslike
7. Playfully pompous
8. Vaguely disintegrating in multiple directions
9. Pulled back from the mild chaos of track 8 into short, well-resolved 10-note snippets that somehow remind me very much of a lovely Residents or Gravity-era Fred Frith or Snakefinger tune
10. A bit of a Chinese touch to the melody and instrumentation in this section; quite pretty
11. Rapid, stabbing notes refuse to be packed up as chords
12. Rambling
13. Palpable relief at the use of actual chords, though even these tend to mutate into atonal clusters; nice
14. Yikes, someone’s singing now, carrying on the theme of track 13 and when that’s over, we descend into a screechy improv where just the slightest thread of the melody carries through
15. Unexpectedly similar to a 70s blaxploitation soundtrack; I guess a chukka-chukka rhythm guitar will do that; works nicely
16. Climbing, again in that weirdly amelodic melodic way (that the Residents, Snakefinger, and Fred Frith used so effectively)
17. Solemn piece of closing up shop; mildly wailing, whimpering guitars don’t want to go but go they must; lovely

Track Listing
1.Intr 9.H
2.A 10.I
3.B 11.J
4.C 12.K
5.D 13.L
6.E 14.L2
7.F 15.M
8.G 16.N
 17.O