Elliott Sharp - Octal: Book Two
This is the second volume of Elliott Sharp's project "Octal", realized
on the 8-string guitarbass prototype built for him by Saul Koll. And
again, it's a solo album of purely digital music "in that my digits are
the sole method of sound-production: no plectra are used, only fingers",
as we read in the liner notes written by the notorious New York
composer, conceptualist, and musician.
After finding new ways for the
rock format, after creating visionary new classical music for string
quartet and orchestra, after stretching electronic dance music, after
reframing the Delta blues model, after abstract electronica, after
improvising freely with the most diverse musicians of the world, from
Nusrat Fateh Ali-Khan to Michiyo Yagi to Frances-Marie Uitti, and after
interpreting Thelonious Monk without the bebop cliches, Sharp is again
in an exploratory mood.
Focused in the investigation of a very special
instrument, an electro-acoustic guitar/bass, he searches for sounds and
develops extended techniques having science as an inspiration, and
especially the thinking of physicist and cosmologist Lisa Randall about
post-quantum theories. Don't be frightened! Like "Octal: Book One",
the results aren't dry and boring, but totally the inverse: physical,
visceral, and very musical! Something new and incredible happens all the
time, and if the music won't surprise you (one big improbability),
Elliott Sharp's dexterity will.
Sometimes, what you hear seems like he's
playing piano with the strings, or using the guitar as a synthesizer,
creating the most unexpected soundscapes, making sounds unlike any heard
from a guitar. And all without any effects units or processors, only
acrobatic hands, sensitive spirit and a hyper-creative mind.