Boombana echoes. AKIO SUZUKI, LAWRENCE ENGLISH
(Winds Measure 2012)
Review by Patrick Farmer
In the august sense, to hear is always already to have heard: to take one’s place in the assembly of prior listeners and thus permit them once again to be present in this enduring hearing. Maurice Blanchot.
Echo / Field Disappearing.
Who of us can stop repeating? It seems an incongruous association for such a quiet man, so perhaps it’s best to think of Suzuki, and English, as translators of an echo already existing, much like the detained breathe of Italian sculptor Giuseppe Penone. An echo, a difference, is in a sense, like certain veins of field recording, a reduction, the glowing transience and a playful phenomenon that many of us, as we shrink older, tend to forget. Found here, hiding under baked pebbles, in the shedding atmosphere of pillbugs and nematodes, is a conglomeration of thick roots and a sustaining pulse that permeates beyond the relationship of stereo and architecture as a continuous–discontinuous space.
Echo / The Sound Of Sound
As echo becomes her environment the performers mimic the gum of previous interactions. Most of the tales in Ovid’s Metamorphosis take place outdoors, leaving the protagonists at the mercy of the elements, thus I hear Suzuki as he propels the onomatopoeia of oration as an amplification of the inside, the Anapolos, and many stories are reversed, voice and body are inseperable, around the edges of echo origins obscurely place themselves into the hands of a quavering impermanence.
In every conception of place there is the slightest glimpse of an interior (angles forever behind their angles) immobility. Burrowed and slow, labyrinths only as deep as their arms, the listener finds hatches of solitary personalities, Suzuki and English. The collision of a naked eye, a still pool, a pebble, revolving transitory subsistence, and the eventual rousing of a curiosity as all such events combine into a conjunctive and highly unstable element that can do nothing but collapse as it puts itself back together in a peculiar motion that never ceases to return to an everlasting compensation.
I’ll tail off with a quote by the French poet Jules Supervielle, one that wraps itself around the low rump and furrow of trace, the wagtail impressions found in every grain of this artifact.
Am I here, am I there? My customary shores
Change on every side and leave me wondering
In my notes I began to write. Resisting the urge to frequent and parable the fever of echo and her eventual fate in relation to the so-occurring proclivity of the collector, but I know I’m thinking it, as if I am awash in a superfluity of stale notion. It’s easy to point at the reiteration of others whilst overlooking the mirror image of your own mirror image.
A quick word in the ear of Suzuki’s accompanying topographical prints, wonderfully presented by Ben Owen. The black molasses of Suzuki’s cartography acts as a buckling trace, perhaps it’s the Yamabiko of Japanese folklore leaving hallucinations in corners? Amongst other things, I’m delighted to return to Utagawa Kuniyoshi’s, cats suggested as the fifty three stations of the Tõkaidõ, and I’m reminded once more of the playfulness of this recording, entangled in the personalities of those involved. There’s an impish insight into the infinitesimal cracks of tautology, and I see nothing but uncanny disposition staring back.
‘Cats suggested as The Fifty-three Stations of the Tōkaidō’ by Utagawa Kuniyoshi