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BRIEF DESCRIPTION: Field recording has been one of the very significant tropes in early twentieth century sound art. With a world of sounds to explore, many artists have been trailing the path originally laid by Pierre Schaeffer et al., and among these, two of the most prominent practitioners have been Luís Antero and Darius Ciuta, each with several releases to their own name and one previous collaboration, 57’ (2012).

Their new collaboration, Antip (2015), a 75-minute work, brings together both artists’ approaches to working with found or collected materials, starting from recordings of ants, as was already the case in Luís Antero’s (ANT(i)SOM) (2014). However complex these beings and their social dynamics may be, this work goes well beyond the ants themselves or their colonies, exploring their motion, work, environments, and ecosystems, in a beautifully poetic and musical way.

Field recordings — as the compositions consisting predominantly or entirely of recorded natural sounds have been called — can be very diverse. They may be regarded as documentation or archive or particular soundscapes, with great care being taken with the high-fidelity, objectiveness and trueness to the sources of the recordings and (eventually) their editing. This naturalist approach can be taken slightly further, using field recordings to reconstruct or simulate non-existing soundscapes, as in e.g. Chris Watson's notable In St Cuthbert's Time (2013) that endeavored to recreate the soundscape of the Holy Island of Lindisfarne in the 7th Century CE. In these cases we have field recordings aiming for increased objectiveness and, perhaps, even a certain hyper-realism. Naturally, field recording techniques can also be used as lenses to zoom in on reality, to amplify and hyper-detail it, to probe it and to distill from it sounds that may otherwise be unheard, or difficult to perceive.

But sound artists are also able to use field recordings of reality to step away from it. Not to create fictions, to build, represent or assemble places, actions or spaces — although this is certainly possible — but rather, and by developing a non-semantic usage of the collected sounds, to uproot them from their original contexts and meanings. This travel from the concrete to the abstract is something that Antero and Ciuta often achieve in this work. They smelt the actions captured in the recordings, strip them from their original meanings and achieve true music.

This is a work that demands a careful and close listening. Antero and Ciuta search the world for wonders, and they don’t simply document them, they rather synthesize and transubstantiate recordings, in order to manufacture new wonders.
Miguel Carvalhais

DESIGN: Luis Antero


ARTIST : Luis Antero + Darius Ciuta
TÍTLE : Antip
TYPE : Album
TIME : 75'14"'
GENRE : Field Recordings/Electronica


01. Antip


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