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Quasi static crack propagation
YANN LEGUAY

(Consumer Waste 2013)

Review by David Vélez

From the liner notes

‘Yann Leguay is a true media saboteur. He appropriates industrial machinery for the playback of musical media (using an angle grinder to perform the live destruction of a microphone or to playback a CD at dizzying speed) with flagrant disregard for the accepted norms of audio behavior. His back catalogue is equally deviant, releasing a 7” single without a central hole and a record composed from recordings of vinyl being scratched by scalpel.’
-Consumer Waste

Destroying the media seems to be a relevant and fun premise today in sound art and composition and Yann Leguay is doing it just right.

‘Quasi static crack propagation’ is one of the refreshing and fun to hear releases of 2013: it is crowded, dynamic and intricate; it presents to the detailed hearing a multitude of levels of texture and depth layered in a very fortunate way.

Six of the seven pieces that compose ‘Quasi static crack propagation’ are no longer than 7 minutes -the final piece ‘Static’ is 13:54- and, although the release works as a full 46-minute narrative structure, the six shorter pieces become a universe of their own with very particular and specific sonic events which for me as a listener translates into a changing and frantic experience. In the other hand the final piece ‘Static (live at Eastern Bloc)’ appears like a sort of bonus track, like some appendix from the set of other pieces; it is almost twice as longer as any of the other pieces and presents a different narrative sense: this one seems more carefully built and it even tells an emotional story instead of crafting a series of gestures and actions as it occur on the other six pieces.

The creative process seems to be a very important aspect for Yann Leguay: his subversive and insurgent practices produce cyclic-mechanic sounds, which probably relates to his interest in vandalizing CD players and turntables.

The emotional structure in ‘QSCP’ is forceful, diverse and full of change and motion; in addition the odd and fractured rhythmic and harmonic patterns develops a crackled tension throughout the 46 minutes building some sort of weird ‘timing’ that modulates the speed at what things occur.

This is a fun and entertaining release that I advice to listen in order to immerse in a frenzied and collapsing approach to beauty; on ‘QSCP’ the exploration of sounds is taken to a very interesting acute and disruptive level that rewards the listener with a striking acoustic experience.

As usual with Consumer Waste, the austere packaging has been compellingly designed, printed and put together.

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[Yann Leguay; photo courtesy of
Le kiosque électronique au Centre Pompidou]

Yann Leguay website
Consumer Waste website