Dead Voices On Air
Frankie Pett Presents..., CD

It's hard to pin down what this CD is all about, while at the same time it's very obvious that boundless experimentation is a major concern for Mark Spybey's project Dead Voices On Air. Enter the story of Klaverland and the happy submarines.

Dead Voices On Air have been around for a while now (10 years), and the group is ever changing. Mark Spybey, a former member of avantgardists Zoviet France, initiated the project after moving from the UK to Canada. Originally, Dead Voices On Air (DVOA) was meant to be a playground for Mark's vivid musical imagination, which in 1993 led to first recordings of experimental soundscapes, released on audio-cassette. Mark's uncommon concepts and despise for pre-generated sounds and ordinary sequencer machines are reflected in a whole bunch of collaborations with like-minded artists, such as composer Jean-Yves Theriault, Michael Rother from legendary German group Neu!, or members of Dutch eccentrics The Legendary Pink Dots.

Now, as for this CD, carrying the pretty inane title "Frankie Pett Presents The Happy Submarines, Playing The Music Of Dead Voices On Air": it starts off with a 7 second "spoken word" intro by the Legendary Pink Dots' Niels Van Hoorn's son Bert and then quickly proceeds into a seductive world of strange, sometimes eerie, noises (e.g. "Dolfijn", "Sweet Garbage Streets") and polyrhythmic patterns (e.g. "Zeehond"). One notable exception is track 4 "Bored Of Canada" (pun intended!), a live recording and a pretty straightforward electronic affair.

Mark has done most of the production and engineering himself (in collaboration with Frankie Pett, aka Frank Verschuuren of Pink Dots/Tear Garden), and of course he's responsible for the mostly ambient compositions, improvisations and the sometimes tricky arrangements. Guest musicians were Niels Van Hoorn and Darryl Neudorf of Pink Dots fame, and Bradley Dunn-Klerxs.

The sleevenotes tell us in great detail about the fictituous Republic of Klaverland - an apparently virtual state within the Netherlands, inhabited by a population of 13 - and the mystery of the happy submarines.

Good, but not excellent.


Label: Invisible
>> Invisible Records Website

DVOA and the mystery of the happy submarines