Reviews by Massimo Ricci

The A23H chronicle


ALFRED 23 HARTH - Plan Eden (Creative Works Records)

The titles of "Plan Eden", out in 1987, refer to Doris Lessing, Friedrich Nietzsche, Robert Anton Wilson and Harth himself. It's another "separated at birth" statement: the first side is Harth solo on the tenor sax, playing a series of short improvisations whose atmosphere changes like tropical weather: a serene reverb-drenched meditation one moment, a torrent of multiphonic schizophrenia a minute later, and the firm reminder that what we currently worship in the so-called "reductionist" movement had already been tackled by Mr.23 at least a decade earlier. The second side features a clutch of duets with Lindsay Cooper - on bassoon and sopranino, while Harth uses clarinets - and a furious one with John Zorn, plus a three-minute improvised "mini opera" with Phil Minton gurgling his tonsils out and a pre-iPod, pre-electronics Günter Müller on drums among the others. In this album, just like in "Anything goes", the composer also took good care of the cover artwork; the LPs include inserts with Harth's drawings, and the nostalgic collector who replaces my good self every once in a while is still moved by the carton's smell of his treasured copies. Sniff....Aaaahhh....

In Touching Extremes