«Etched Above The Bow Grip»is the first solo free-improvised album of prolific Belgian guitarist Dirk Serries in a career that spans now over thirty years. Serries is still known for his powerful-experimental, ambient textures that he has released under the monikers vidnaObmana and Fear Falls Burning. But in recent years he focuses more and more on collaborating with improvising musicians, in the trios YODOK III and Kodian and many other ad-hoc settings.
The solo album was recorded in a studio in Anderlecht, Belgium, and is dedicated to the memory of British pioneer guitarist-free-improviser Derek Bailey (1930-2005). The first nine pieces are short improvisations. Serries begins by exploring the raw-noisy sonic spectrum of the electric guitar, mirrored in the acoustics of the studio room and the guitar amplifier. Later he patiently experiments with minimalist riff thrown into the air, cut by an incisive pedals work, later arranged in an eccentric-sounding puzzles, as if organically finding their own logic. Only the subtle «Clusters Bleed» and «In The Beckoning Rust» echo the complex voicings and the jazz-based sophistication that shone through many of Bailey improvisations. The other short pieces navigate briefly through abstract, distorted textures.
The last two pieces, «Celestial Perfume» and «The Broken Story End», sound as Serries personal homage to Bailey wise playing with silence and space. These pieces continue Serries recent series of releases under the name Microphonics. Here he sculpts the guitar sounds in nuanced and gentle, almost silent drone textures by carefully selected and placed array of microphones manipulations.
Original and impressive.
Dirk Serries (g, amp, eff)