‘Tis the season for an abundance of album releases, making it quite a challenge to decide where to begin. However, one standout that has captured our attention and held it steadfast is Marc Richter‘s mesmerising new album, Coh Bâle. Its captivating sounds have been on a constant loop, providing endless sonic satisfaction for the past week.
In 2009, Richter introduced a timeless masterpiece – the Alphabet 1968 album, released under the pseudonym Black to Comm. This project was intended as a sequel to the original Alphabet 1968, but for reasons unbeknownst to us, it never materialised and seemed lost to eternity.
In this generous 18-track collection of miniatures recorded between 2011 and 2015, Coh Bâle combines sounds from a detuned piano to vintage synthesisers, decaying acoustic instruments, and children’s voices. These sounds were then mixed on headphones on ICE trains travelling between these places and Hamburg, his hometown. One of the most intriguing aspects of Richter’s collection is that each song showcases a distinctive set of instruments. This not only adds to the richness and complexity of the music but also offers a captivating exploration of various ideas within each piece. With such diverse instrumentation, the possibilities are endless, allowing you to delve into your own interpretations and experiences while listening.
Among the various captivating tracks on this album, we’d like to draw your attention to one of the album’s unexpected climaxes, a gorgeous (artificial) berimbau version of the Welsh traditional ‘Iechyd o Gylch’. It’s a remarkable combination of two seemingly disparate musical styles brought together to create something unique and beautiful. The track showcases Richter’s willingness to experiment and explore various sounds.
From here, the choice is yours – where will this musical journey take you?