Gruenrekorder: Merzouga – Mekong Morning Glory

New CD/MP3 release at Gruenrekorder featuring compositions by Merzouga (Eva Pöpplein & Janko Hanushevsky), who used recordings of the Mekong River, on its course in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.

The Mekong River is one of the world’s major rivers. On its more than 4.000 km long way from its source in the Tibetan Plateau to the Delta in South Vietnam it passes an altitude difference of 5.000 km, travels through seven countries, three climatic zones and three different culture areas.

On an extensive journey Eva and I followed the lower course of the Mekong River and travelled downstream through Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. On its way the Mae Nam Khong, the „Mother River of All Things“, creates all life around it. It determines the flora and fauna, floods rice-fields and synchronizes the life of people. Everywhere along its banks buzzing, fertile, tropical life shoots up. We set off with our microphone to collect the sounds that this bustling activity of life creates.

A significant compositional approach is the metamorphosis and the merging of sounds. We examine field-recordings in regard to their musical qualities („Music in the sense of meaningful sound-patterns“- Bill Fontana) and fuse them with electronically processed electric bass sounds. The piece’s compositional arc is inspired by the lower course of the river that flows in a gigantic crescendo-movement towards the sea. As a poetic musical analogy to the dark jungle river we use my prepared bass guitar, this long-waved instrument that generates all the musical sounds in the composition. Using Chinese chopsticks, golf balls, knitting needles and wine corks I have been systematically altering and expanding the sound spectrum of my instrument for the past decade.

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