James Plotkin – KURTLANMAK


Even if James Plotkin’s two real masterpieces are his duo outings with Mark Spybey and Brent Gutzeit (you can’t afford to be without a copy of Mosquito Dream on Kranky, one of the deepest low-frequency explorations ever released), we’ve been missing a solo Plotkin recording for some time. So Kurtlanmak, though recorded at New York’s Tonic back in December 2003, marks a welcome return. This limited edition (200) little gem finds Jim armed with guitar, effects and laptop in an all too brief – less than 30 minutes – showcase of fierce angular repetition and impressively roaring subsonics mangled and spat out, sounding at times like shards of Adrian Belew reconfigured by Robert Hampson into a scarred image of terror-struck cybernetic seagulls. Elsewhere, Plotkin’s gracefully trembling chords aren’t as far away from David Torn as you might think, until, that is, the vibrational power of his disfigured guitar veers off into menace and surprise, shaking the ribcage with gravity-defying barriers of drones. Ultimately tranquillity returns with the final arpeggios before Plotkin signs off with a trademark blast of earth loop hum. Unique.



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