It’s wiltingly hot here and I can’t seem to drag myself out of the house to go to AS220’s Foo Fest. My fan is working overtime but it’s no use. Perhaps I’ll just stick my head in the freezer.
Or, post some more music from Cold Storage.
Ah, much better.
In 1983 Tim Hodgkinson (Henry Cow, the Work) collaborated with Belgian songwriter Catherine Jauniaux to create Fluvial, a work that melds jazz improvisation, avant-garde instrumentation and vocal techniques, and a cabaret (Voltaire) sensibility. Music for the Merzbau, the album bursts with invention, thanks not only to the impressive roster of players (among them the aforementioned Hodgkinson, Charles Bullen, Tom Cora, Bill Gilonis, and Dom Weeks) but to Jauniaux’s marvelous, fascinating vocalizations, which run the stylistic gamut from traditional French chansons to breathy folk to Dadaistic glossolalia. The album is constantly in flux, but its stylistic omnivorousness is well-matched by its fearlessness and robust sense of humor.
(Pretend I posted this yesterday, in time for Bastille Day.)
Jauniaux also collaborated with Dom Weeks and Cass Davies of Furious Pig on the lone album by Het, “Let’s Het!” True to its subversively wry title, the album is engaging and impossible to categorize, a dense, melodically inventive work.
Originally released on Hodgkinson and Gilonis’s own Woof imprint, both albums have been re-issued by ReRUSA subsidiary Ad Hoc.
ARTWORK BY JACQUES JAUNIAUX