Review of Occur [12k1013]

Incursion (US)

It has been three years since Taylor Deupree released a solo record on his own 12k label (since 1998’s Comma,). This new title, Occur, is the first of a two-part series, and will be followed up within a year’s time by “its polar opposite” titled Stil.. Inspired by the production techniques developed during his collaboration with Tetsu Inoue on last year’s excellent Active/Freeze CD, Deupree has created 9 tracks of non-repetitive and abstract sound structures inspired by all things brief. What strikes me most about this work is its incredible dynamic range; from side to side to side, up and across, narrow and wide, these sounds occupy a generous virtual space. The liner notes suggest professional monitoring or headphone listening. With headphones the listener is made more aware of the finer touches in the music and the diversity of the sound palette – the subtle shifts and slight variances, the closeness of the sounds – and yet what is lacking with headphone use is the force of the bass tones. It’s an incredible experience to feel this bass resonate deep inside your chest, and with an adequate system (and a capable subwoofer) you can achieve the best of both worlds: the intimacy of the sounds (the details around the stereo field) as well as the physical presence of the bass tones. In keeping with his subject matter, Deupree keeps things transitory on Occur. Only on track 5, and very briefly in a few other places, do we witness a tendency towards repetition, but even this remains dynamic and granular. The sounds crunch and form clusters in the foreground, apparent patterns change in moments, sounds appear and disappear at a glance, and yet still Deupree manages to keep the silence around the sounds in tact. Perhaps his finest work to date, Occur comes highly recommended. [Richard di Santo]

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