Friday, 19 January 2018
Nurse With Wound - To The Quiet Men From A Tiny Girl (1980)
In common with their legendary debut Chance Meeting..., NWW were again obliged (for the last time) to give engineer Nicky Rogers an introductory guest spot on guitar, entitled Umbrella Link. Other than that, Stapleton's increasing confidence in the studio was already starting to show, in the slowed-down voice and various bits of electronic noise in the early minutes of She Alone Hole And Open, not to mention the various trumpet smears (Berrocal), other odds and ends, and the hammering rhythmic ending.
Ostranenie, named after the Russian art movement and also taking up a full album side, is better still, with the sonic landscape really starting to open out in anticipation of studio fever-dreams like Homotopy To Marie. Disembodied voices, echoing percussive sounds, a lengthy exploration of a musical box rendition of Schumann's Traumerei, and a straight 90-second lift from John Cage (who was given a "grateful acknowledgement" in the liner notes) all take their turn in haunting the soundscape. In the latter case, the choppy piano and radio play drop-ins from Credo In Us (the early 70s recording by Ensemble Musica Negativa) sound completely at home in their surroundings. It's one of those great testaments to Stapleton's developing art and how skillfully he could synthesise his influences.