All music composed and performed live by Maja Solveig Kjelstrup Ratkje and Ikue Mori.
Recorded live by Barry Hollywood at Black Box, Belfast, March 31, and by Dan Fox and Simon Hanson at The Lanternhouse, Ulverston, March 29, 2012 UK. Mixed and mastered by Maja S.K. Ratkje in Svartskog, Norway. Cover design by Lasse Marhaug.
A recording of live performances which brought together two essential figures of the contemporary scene: an oustanding Norwegian composer and vocal artist Maja S.K. Ratkje and a celebrated improviser and composer, former DNA drummer, Ikue Mori. The common sound territory, created together by Mori and Ratkje, balances between quietly growing tension and powerful outbursts of unrestrained, relentless noise. Within this harmony, Ratkje takes adventurous excursions towards the borders and unknown facets of sound, using treated voice as well as an acoustic and electronic workshop, while Mori’s thoughtful laptop provides a strong frame and a sense of deep focus.
In these carefully crafted, long and nuanced compositions , both artists maneuver between meditative, ritual areas and irregular, elusive noise blots. The most astonishing element of this superb performance is the realization that even though the compositions are entirely intuitive, created without any previous planning, guidelines or negotations, the listener can sense a nearly palpable sense of deep connection and understanding between the artists. Their knowledge and keen, immediate communication create an invisible harness, which naturally directs the stream of improvisation. This engaging, exhaustive listen is a contemplative retreat and a daring, dizzying somersault at once.Olga Drenda