Jarboe - "Primal Baroque Experiment" CD Review ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Jarboe - "Primal Baroque Experiment" CD Review

Jarboe - 'Primal Baroque Experiment' CD ReviewJarboe has been pushing musical boundaries for over twenty years and, in recent years, has successfully collaborated with artists ranging from Justin Broadrick to Attila Csihar to Phil Anselmo. Jarboe has taken to releasing 'works-in-progress' CDRs through her The Living Jarboe website and Primal Baroque Experiment was released late last year.

In a 2009 interview with webzine Lords of Metal, Jarboe was asked: "There is a lot of unreleased material on your website and you occasionally release cd-r's with other material. It seems you have an amazingly high workrate."

Jarboe: I create ideas and it's like a continuing process of me working alone with different source materials and then those things become available. People are really interested in hearing that because often that material continues to evolve...Those recordings are experimental studies that may or may not make it live or onto a more formal kind of album

I have always shared the initial musical ideas for my albums and given people to chance to hear how it evolves and morphs. I think it makes me connected with the fanbase... I don't like to call them fans... the people that like what I do. They like that because they have a very intimate relationship with what I'm doing and I think that's very important.

Jarboe describes Primal Baroque Experiment as "[o]rganic studies in dark texture and primitive drum" and the music is something that you feel and experience rather than just listen to. The musical instrumentation is fairly minimalist across this disc and it seems to include just Jarboe's keyboard, a drum machine and a white noise machine. The sound of the instruments are combined in different proportions and rhythmic structure across the different tracks and are complemented by Jarboe's vocals, which span the range from ominous spoken word to shy schoolgirl.

The disc is bookended by two dark pieces - "Roses", which is a spoken word piece that play out above the musical tension of a pulsing undercurrent and jagged keyboard lines and "Racing Instrumental Mix", which takes the last line ("racing to our death") from the darkwave track "Racing Distortion Mix" and loops this around funeral keys, jagged percussion and white noise. Some of the more intriguing tracks are "Jungle Baroque", which features what sounds like breathing over poly-rhythmic drumming and "Baroque Instrumental", which is an orchestral instrumental that brings in both strings and wood instruments.

All-in-all, Primal Baroque Experiment is a worthwhile expedition into part of Jarboe's psyche and perhaps freeing your own as part of the process.

The Living Jarboe