2004, Corpus Hermeticum
Back in the mid to late 90’s, Malcolm create quite a bit of controversy with his (partially Creative NZ funded) album ‘Trust only this face’ which featured the politically and media-lauded track ‘The ballad of Peter Plumley Walker’, ironically a song meant to criticize the media’s handling of the (now infamous) cricket umpire’s last living moments, and it’s follow-up ‘What is it Keith?’ more recently Malcolm formed his 3-piece kletzmer surf-guitar band Surfing USSR, releasing their debut earlier this year.
The new release is a document of Malcolm’s solo avant-garde performances over the past 2 years, a selection of interpretations of pieces by the likes of Steve Lacy, Konrad Bauer and Ornette Coleman in his self-styled ‘Depresso Guitar’ format.
Malcolm spent several years living and performing in the avant-garde and underground jazz scene in Berlin and these tracks display the creative intricacies he has since refined. Playing as a one-man-band of sorts, Malcolm manipulates many sound devices, mainly a heavily prepared guitar (with an array of pickups, multiple sets of strings and a balancing area of moving objects to roll over), an assortment of devices such as e-bow, fans, slide etc, and also a ‘floor guitar’ which Malcolm taps with his foot to create rhythmic pulses. It’s quite an experience, and Malcolm conjures up some truly beautiful and textural sounds.
Thoroughly recommended for fans of the more unusual.