Improv from two students at Mills and an associate. Berthiaume has an album of guitar duets with Fred Frith and Derek Bailey; I'm unfamiliar with the others' earlier work. Berthiaume and Sirjacq played (guitar/percussion and piano/percussion) and Teale mixed/modified the results, which are fantastic. Mostly the mood in a single track doesn't change significantly, but then these are pretty short. Sirjacq's piano playing is mostly very conventionally pretty, and it sounds like he really likes the sustain pedal. A lot of the interest comes from the way his playing sounds in relation to what's going on around him.
Best: 3, 4, 6, 9, 14
1.Abrasive guitar and Harold Budd-like piano. Pretty.
2.Insectoid twiddlings in back (then like horse clopping); the dark, aggressive guitar tones (similar to Leibig's bass on the Homler Leibig Duo album). Piano in the second half.
3.Conventionally pretty at first; the guitar sounds ebowed or some such, then like a sawed violin, gaining prominence in the mix. Ends -:06
4.Plink! Sounds like inside-the-piano plucking and scraping; guitar has a koto-like quality. Some very low bass tones here.
5.Primarily piano, Berthiaume contributes some chain-scraping percussion but the focus is on Sirjacq. Doesn't really hold my interest without the guitar mixing things up—a little too sparse—though it does pick up as it moves on.
6.Ringing guitar chords and harmonics, then gamelan-like percussion (or maybe the piano's been treated)
7.Obviously treated guitar playing single amelodic lines, not dissimilar from the last track overall though more energetic—the sound of the guitar is reminiscent of Rod Poole's just-intonation playing.
8.Guitar somewhat koto-like again, playing decisive single notes or chords, interspersed with held piano chords.
9.Hesitant piano with a sound in the background like far-off howling wind, quavering guitar.
10.Abrasive guitar outbursts, like shards being broken off; same held piano chords as in 8. There's a fair amount of silence on this track.
11.Goes nowhere, one of the album's few misfires. Very, very sparse.
12.Rhythmic tapping on something or other with chime-like tuned percussion of some sort.
13.String scrapes and electronic sounds, one of the few tracks where Teale's presence really obtrudes. Piano playing not particularly noteworthy.
14.Long howling guitar. Sort of a restrained wildness. Ends with echoes of percussive clatters (also, ends -0:11).