Review: Alexei Borisov & Phil Durrant – In the Wood (Zeromoon, Dec 22)

The harsh electronic improvisations of In the Wood are a far cry from both the reductionist works I associate with Durrant, such as Dach with Thomas Lehn and Radu Malfatti or Open with Matt Davis and Mark Wastell, and the more composed, glitch-plagued noise produced by Borisov. Instead, the two artists seem to meet somewhere in the middle of their extreme styles, translating the piercing tones and buzz of the electronic devices used into fluid, freely played pieces. It’s mostly unclear who’s making which sounds, or even what is making those sounds, but to me it sounds like modular synthesis and circuit bending, with each musician able to produce both unpredictable flurries and sustained drones. There’s hardly ever any silence; the most reserved that In the Wood gets is during moments like in the beginning of “Part 4,” when the clocking of a modified circuit is left running on its own, and even then it’s soon interrupted by some of the most violent interplay on the whole record. Despite the abstractness of the sounds, In the Wood is persistently loud, intense, and confrontational, with every blast of glitches adopting almost disconcerting levels of tactility.

2 thoughts on “Review: Alexei Borisov & Phil Durrant – In the Wood (Zeromoon, Dec 22)

  1. FYI, I – Phil Durrant – am panned slightly to the left and Alexei Borisov slightly to the right. I am indeed playing modular synths and especially the semi-modular 0-Coast. Thanks for the review.

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