«History Of The Lisbon Chaplaincy» was recorded on September 2013 in Lisbon’s only Anglican church, St. George’s, a 19th century high Victorian building with a two-manuals pipe organ, built by Henry Fincham from London more than one hundred years ago. The church unique acoustics defines the atmosphere of this recording, a free-improvised meeting between Swedish soprano and alto sax player Per Gärdin, organist Rodrigo Pinheiro, known as the pianist of the local RED Trio, a trio that performed with Gärdin, who has recorded separately before with Gärdin («Oblique Mirrors», Ibn Musik, 2015), and sound artist and turntables player Pedro Lopes.
Pinheiro set the course of this 43-minutes title-piece and his playing of the old Fincham pipe organ fills the church space with patient waterfalls of resonating sounds. Gärdin and Lopes assume different roles. Gärdin responds directly to Pinheiro explorations of the pipe organ spectrum with free-associative, sympathetic lyrical improvisations, clearly owe much to Evan Parker innovative solo improvisations. Lopes uses what he calls as turntable percussion as a subtle, subversive voice, contrasting the supposedly spiritual sounds of the pipe organ and the melodic ones of the saxes with profane sonic distortions. Lopes introduces otherworldly, textual dimensions of danger and unpredictability to the massive flow of organ plus sax sounds, charging this restless flow with sudden dramatic tension.
Slowly, Pinheiro alternates the peaceful spirit of this improvisation, offering a more versatile and adventurous interplay, focused on searching dissonant, abstract textures. This development challenges both Gärdin and Lopes to adapt their strategies to these new, barren sonic terrains. Eventually Pinheiro leads again the trio to a peaceful, majestic coda.
Per Gärdin (ss, as), Pedro Lopes (turntable perc), Rodrigo Pinheiro (Fincham pipe organ)