HELMUT SCHÄFER

Thought Provoking III

(23five - 017) CD $12.00 (Out-of-stock)

The final document from the late electro-acoustic composer who described his work as "reflections on society structures, the blindness of modern and informed masses and everyday functionalism in between civilization." His intensity of expression took Schäfer around the globe, but his recording output is relatively small, focusing mostly on collaborative work with noted extremist Zbigniew Karkowski. Thought Provoking shifts away from his brutalist electronic engineering, toward a spatialized, open-ended composition based on the muffled tones from an ad hoc instrument he built from salvaged church organ pipes and hair dryers. The first presentation took place in Graz, Austria in 2003; the second was a collaboration with violinist Elisabeth Gmeiner in Vienna two years later; the third and final performance was in 2006 with percussionist Will Guthrie and Gmiener at the St. Andre Church, where he first presented it in Graz. After Schäfer's death, Guthrie reconstituted the rehearsal takes from that performance. The bellowing hums from Schäfer's organ pipe and hair dryer contraption ebb and flow amid intermittent percussive flourishes, subtle gong overtones, sustained violin trills, and fizzling electronic mark-making. On the second track, Karkowski pays tribute with a smoldering electro-acoustic remix.