CD Jazz & Easy Review

Keith Rowe/John Tilbury’s Enough Still Not To Know

Title: Enough Still Not To Know
Label: Sofa Music

They were last together, in a creative sense, back in 2011, but this long sonic adventure was recorded in 2014 for a new video installation by Norwegian visual artist Kjell Bjørgeengen, who is credited as the album’s producer.

The sounds – music might just be too strong a word for it – are sparse. In fact, the included booklet tends to say it all via the quotes from emails between Bjørgeengen, Rowe and Tilbury confirm. The Norwegian obviously added significant thoughts and direction to the pairing’s final output because Bjørgeengen encourages Rowe and Tilbury’s performance in a particular fashion, “I envisage a piece with a lot of silence / space.” or “Some kind of ‘broken moments’; a place where things start to fall apart or are on the edge to do so.”

The pair obviously know each others’ work and can anticipate each other’s movements on an instinctive level as each, especially on the first CD, breaks those silences with the odd noise synced to their own sense of timing, their own inner clock. But silence plays a large part of this work and silence is a major factor in the project as a whole.

Each of the CDs are labelled First Part, Second Part, Third Part and Fourth Part to signify that this work should be seen or, rather, heard as a complete whole. One continuous piece, in fact, which is certainly the case as the beginning of each CD picks up where the previous one left off.

This box set of free, improv and avant garde jazz noises is a contemplative, meditative sonic adventure that sometimes builds tension with silence to enhance the drama of the piece. Listened to in the dark, it will have your senses on edge as you wait for the next change in direction from the pair.

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