Touch, August 2012

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TO:83V | Oren Ambarchi "Audience of One"

DLP - 5 tracks - Limited edition of 1000

Artwork & photography: Jon Wozencroft
Cut by Jason at Transition
Originally mastered by Francois Tetaz at Moose, Melbourne

Track listing:
A: Salt
B: Knots pt. 1
C: Knots pt. 2
D1: Passage
D2: Fractured Mirror

[Knots has been edited by the artist for vinyl into two parts]

On "Audience of One", Oren Ambarchi presents a four-part suite which moves from throbbing minimalism to expansive song-craft to ecstatic free-rock. His previous solo albums for Touch exhibited a clear progression towards augmenting and embellishing his signature bass-heavy guitar tones with fragile acoustic instrumentation. Audience of One, while also existing in clear continuity with these recordings, opens the next chapter.

Remarkable in its confidence and breadth, but also in the sensuous immediacy of its details, this is the first time a single record has come close to encapsulating Ambarchi’s musical personality in its full range and singularity. The techniques and strategies developed in his refined improvisational work with Keith Rowe and his explorations of the outer limits of rock with Sunn O))) and Keiji Haino are both in evidence, alongside the meticulous attention to detail and composition of his solo works. And on the cover of Ace Frehley’s ‘Fractured Mirror’ which closes the record, Ambarchi even points to his roots as a classic rock fanatic, in an epic yet faithful version which extends the shimmering guitar patters of the original into a rich field of phase patters reminiscent of the classic American minimalism of Reich and Riley.

The album features a multitude of collaborators, who, far from appearing in incidental roles, are integral to the pieces on which they perform: on ‘Salt’, Ambarchi paints a hypnotic, chiming backdrop for Paul Duncan’s (Warm Ghost) vocals, and Joe Talia’s virtuoso drumming and driving cymbals are at the core of the epic ‘Knots’, in which Ambarchi, alongside a chamber arrangement by Eyvind Kang, weaves a net of frequencies and textures with the organic push and pull of a 70s psych jam, the bass response of a doom metal ritual and the psycho-acoustic precision of an Alvin Lucier composition.

On his previous records, Ambarchi’s signature guitar tone was the ever-present bedrock over which other elements sounded. At moments on Audience of One, this disappears entirely, as on the beautiful ‘Passage’, which, recalling the 70’s Italian non-academic minimalism of Roberto Cacciapaglia and Giusto Pio, is composed of overlapping tones from Hammond organ and wine glasses, Jessika Kenney's voice, various acoustic instruments, and the delicate amplified textures of Canadian sound-artist Crys Cole. Rather than being provided by any particular sound, the unified feel of Audience to One stems simply from the unique, patient sensibility Ambarchi has developed over the last twenty years; abstracting musical forms into their barest forms, while somehow always managing to leave their emotive power intact. [Francis Plagne]

Buy Oren Ambarchi "Audience of One" [DLP] in the TouchShop

also available:
Buy Oren Ambarchi "Audience of One" [CD] in the TouchShop
Buy Oren Ambarchi "Audience of One" [FLAC] in the TouchShop
Buy Oren Ambarchi "Audience of One" [Apple Lossless] in the TouchShop

Jon Wozencroft nails why we are not called Touch Records - again

Read a wide-ranging interview with Jon Wozencroft on The Ghostly Store Blog, which was published on the 14th August 2012...

"Anyway, we’ve been called Touch for 30 years. Releasing vinyl records is just one aspect of what we do. So we get annoyed when people say Touch Records because if nothing else it’s lazy journalism."

There is much more in this interview, of course...

"I am quite happy to accept a level of quietness. It takes time…"

"Certain aspects of the production process having become much easier, editorial/curation becomes more vital. Our task has been to balance the impact of the digital music slipstream on our fluidity in working with our artists. Perhaps one equation is to be responsive, not reactive, to the changes in sound and music and see the long-term with optimism."

Touch Radio 82 | Peter 7 Paelinck & Yves Bondue

28.08.12 - W12 - 16:22 - 192 kbps

Every month in 2012 we are recording a soundtrack at 12 different locations in the Westhoek, Belgium, where we live. We tried to find 12 places which have a meaning for us. Those places, sometimes are filled with history, sometimes with magick, have influenced us, losing or ego and creating sounds melting with the environment.

We are 6 months away; half W12.

JUNI12 has been recorded at 'Farms Hospital', between Vlamertinge and Elverdinge. It is an historcal place with ancient history of death and war - Yves' playground when he was young, a place druids, a gathering point of nature sourced by its sounds of trees and birds.

The sound was made by field recordings, french horn, violin, ancient bass drum and manipulations.


Subscribe to the TouchPod podcast of TouchRadio via the iTunes Music Store
Play Peter 7 Paelinck & Yves Bondue "W12"

Touch.30 live in Brussels | 29th August 2012

Touch.30 presents a free evening of performances, as part of the 9th edition of the Feeërieën, in the centre of Brussels and in the middle of the Warandepark, where everything takes place on and around the restored bandstand.

In performance:
Philip Jeck
The Ash International Sound System

Further details at

The Whitstable Symphony | 1st September 2012

Photography & design: Jon Wozencroft

The Whitstable Symphony, with audio by BJNilsen and images by Jon Wozencroft, was commissioned by The Whitstable Biennale and will be screened on September 1st-16th 2012 at Whitstable Museum and Gallery.

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