Artist: Liles, Andrew
THE DYING SUBMARINER (A Concerto for Piano and Reverberation in Four Movements)
Label: Beta-lactam Ring Records
Leviathan low end growls belch a hazy pitch into the sea, rendering daylight useless to penetrate the unknown depths. Andrew's concerto for piano and reverb conjures many spirits, including that of wrathful Poseidon. The piece (in 4 movements) also conjures the spirit of nothingness. A sense of complete loneliness prevails in the echoey death throes. The faint scent of forebears fascinated with watery graves and abandon lingers from the wake of such pieces as Gavin Bryars’ The Sinking Of The Titanic and many of Harold Budd's early works, though Liles’ fitful concerto paints his submariner's demise more as a dissonant, prolonged struggle than as a melodic, majestic descent. Spatially, the work tends to build into shifting layers similar to Charlemagne Palestine, Henry Cowell's clusters or La Monte Young's Well Tuned Piano (though Andrew's work is not based on a microtonal system). The ringing resonances sometimes fan out as distinct harmonic phrases, and sometimes the notes simply propagate and clash with the reverb creating ripples of pure metallic sound, even to the point where the piano's strings melt into the sculptural, welling up more like tidal pools alongside Bertoia and Dumitrescu. A beautifully disturbing wet suit suite of sonic sound.