Philip Jeck
Host CD

"Host" is DIY-artist and vinyl aficionado Philip Jeck's latest release on compact disc and features three musical pieces plus a video illustrating the "making of" Philip's LoFi-music.

Philip Jeck favours an unusual and interdisciplinary approach towards music. He was formally trained in visual arts at Dartington College, Devon, and it seems his sound experiments also have a "visual" quality in that they are built upon existing patterns and images. They resemble a jigsaw puzzle of musical ideas derived from their original framework.

Philip crops and shapes, translates and mangles the sounds that have almost exclusively been taken from old vinyl records found on somebody's attic, on second-hand markets and junkyards. Philip is not going after any sort of perfection, he's rather fond of picking the glitches. Most of the records he uses are damaged - some more, some less. In an almost wicked fascination for transitoriness he deliberately stores them out of their paper covers to accelerate the ageing process of the vinyl. The more scratches, the better it sounds to Philip's ears.

So is "Host" a collection of ready-made music, is it copy-art? Let's see: Track 1, titled "Community" and with a playing length of 6 minutes 43 seconds by far the shortest of the three tracks, is dominated by machine-like and distorted sounds before fading away in an unexpected wall of silence. "Accomodation" uses sounds seemingly taken from the inside of a transformer, a wobbly mass of white noise, a dying dinosaur and a celestial choir for a highly disturbing mix. "Skew" is the final audio track on "Host" and starts off with a repetitive sequence that expands into an atmospheric and almost contemplative piece before suddenly being disrupted by metallic noises, reverse samples, nervous rhythms and factory sounds - quite a dramatic collage.

Then there is the video track that shows Philip Jeck "at work" with two old-fashioned turntables, a mixing desk and a small synthesizing unit with keyboard. Witness Philip sitting in front of his "workbench", changing records, turning and tweaking knobs. That's the way "Host" was created - a transcendental experience and a homage to Lo Fidelity, too.

(rh 10/MMIII)

Label: Sub Rosa
>> Sub Rosa Website

Philip Jeck, tweaking the knobs (picture from video)