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by: B. Fleischmann

According to the press materials, Bernhard Fleischmann "wants to criticize a state of mind that subordinates human beings to a logic of economic utilization." A noble sentiment, to be sure, but not the kind that necessarily leads to the production of enjoyable music -- let alone two full discs of enjoyable music. Luckily for those whose musical tastes have not yet succumbed to the dialectical imperative, Fleischmann's compositions are mainly instrumental, and for the most part they are not obtrusively political in content. The first disc is the most conventionally enjoyable of the two; its 11 tracks run the gamut from a glitchy electronica setting for a German translation of Thoreau ("02/00") to a slowly rocking and deeply harmonically weird composition for piano, guitar, and drums titled "Letter From Home" and, best of all, a little number called "Waiting for You to Come" that consists of little more than a mellow, laid-back piano overlaid with jittery, drill'n'bass drum programming. The second disc is a single, 45-minute-long track entitled "Take Your Time." This piece is almost cinematic in scope, starting out as a jumble of musique concrète, then passing through phases of country-tinged steel guitar, dubwise phase shifting, and a sort of glitch-jazz before finally turning into twisted a kind of song. Politics or no politics, this is radical music in the best sense of the term. ~ Rick Anderson

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