Horacz Bluminth - "Marsch Obskur"
(1996 (!), Adult Music 313.03)

Uploaded to Aural Innovations: September 2003

You simply cannot stay away from a CD with a cover like this, when youíre occasionally writing for an e-zine that covers Space Rock and related topics... I found this one quite recently at a record and CD booth at the Sulphur Sonic Festival in Mannheim, Germany in late August 2003 where I attended a show of Horacz (see the link to a festival report at the end of this review). At home I found out that the CD dates back to 1996, but I wouldnít have been more surprised if I would have read that itís from 2096... As I cannot imagine that more than just a few of you have ever heard music like this, letís consider it a new album. At his show at the mentioned festival I saw Horacz, aka Martin Buchholz, performing with just an e-piano and efxíd voices and I was surprised to detect a very skillful multi-instrumentalist on his CD. Though he says in the liner notes that "by incorporating simple or partially mastered instruments, dominant structures can be injected with the naive energy of beginnerís luck" with the objective to dispense the "virtuoso hierarchy", you can expect a very high level of instrumental control and very advanced compositional skills throughout the album, and thatís why heís able to fulfil his promise that his "compositions are born out of the layering and addition of improvised elements, generating soundtracks for spontaneus cell division in rich nutrient solutions".

What is the music about? In my festival review I said that there is space music by human beings, and that there is music that seems to be composed and performed by genuine aliens, with Horaczís music being of that latter kind. What heís doing on this CD is rather "earthbound" at the first glance, as heís leading you to all the varied corners of man made music, including Techno, the so called "World Music", Rock, Jazz and Neo Classic before you notice that youíre already on a different planet for quite a while... On this planet there lives a species that has done a lot of research and investigation concerning our planet earth with special emphasis on our music. Interestingly enough these aliens are capable of analysing and reconstructing musical structures (including a quite virtuous mastering of human instruments such as piano, saxophone, clarinet, trombone etc.), but they donít have any prejudices concerning musical categories which prevents them from falling into the trap of eclecticism. Attentive and experienced listeners will recognize a vast variety of styles and genres including film music by John Cale, Arab muezzines, Techno turntable specialists, Franz Liszt, "Les Voix Bulgaries", piano improvisations in the style of Keith Jarret... just to mention very few ;-)) of the the musical ingrediences. The only thing these aliens are struggling with is the human voice (so many different and imperceptible languages around). But instead of using their own alien language they invented an new human-like language theyíre using for the vocal parts which makes the lyrics understandable for everybody... (in fact, you wonít understand one single word but you might feel that from now on you can understand the world a bit better).

Most of you - like I did - will consider this CD a strage melange of different styles and elements during the first listen. But, believe me, from the second listen on you will recognize a well thought out accessability due to the fact that this new music refers to known structures and elements, and what appears "outragous" in the beginning turns out to be a new element of the worldwide musical "grammar" in the end. I donít want to say that every listener will like this music. Iím writing this review for those of you who are curious about new music and consider its value regardless of liking or disliking. With Horacz Bluminthís Marsch Obskur weíve got a record that will perfectly fit into the CD collections of those who care about musical "importance". And this is an important record.

You can visit Horacz Bluminthís website at www.horacz.de.
Email him via the Adult Music label at adult-music@web.de.
CLICK HERE to read coverage of the Sulphur Sonic Festival.

Reviewed by Frank Gingeleit

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