Monday, 18 June 2018

Mikhail Chekalin - Between Spring And Autumn By Stealth (2004 compi, rec. 1986-93)

Some more Mikhail Chekalin to add to the previous posts of his Symphony-Phonogram and Prepared Organ albums.  Between Spring And Autumn By Stealth is a 1986 work, which like the others was first released in the M'ars Gallery series in the early 90s.  Like Symphony-Phonogram, it's a great mix of Chekalin's symphonic ambitions/classical influences, and his talent for vast atmospheres of dark, disquieting ambience, especially when his wordless vocal is added.

The latter aspects are still my favourite thing about Chekalin's music so far, especially on tracks like Mini Requiem.  I've mentioned this before, but it really is like ambient 80s Vangelis with a lot less gloss, the restricted production values well suited to Chekalin's music.  I'll be exploring him further in due course - there's a couple more of the M'ars Gallery reissues I still need to pick up, before giving his 90s-onwards music a try.  Speaking of which, there's a taster added to the end of this CD, in a 28-minute live performance from 1993.  Titled Concerto For Piano, Synthesiser and Voice, it's an immersive piece with long abstract, exploratory stretches and some gorgeous piano passages - well worth inclusion here.


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