«Minor Planets» is the third and last installment of a trilogy of cosmically-themed, electro-acoustic albums by the British, Berlin-based trio Twinkle³ – self-designed, electronics pioneers Richard Scott and Dave Ross and shakuhachi virtuoso player Clive Bell. The space journey of Twinkle³ began with «Let’s Make A Solar System» (ini/itu, 2009) and continued with «Debris In Lower Earth Orbit» (Cuspeditions, 2015), with Norwegian vocal artist Sidsel Endresen. The third installment highlights Twinkle³ hybrid aesthetics that blend free-improvisation with studio and musique-concrete techniques and enjoying an eclectic coexistence of elements inspired by the Jamaican dub of Lee Perry through the classical Japanese Noh theater via the contemporary avant-garde of Karlheinz Stockhausen to the Nigerian jùjú singer-songwriter King Sunny Adé.
Twinkle³ distills these influences into its own distinct, hyperspace journey to the mysterious «Minor Planets» with aleatoric analog sequencing, chamber-like acoustic improvisation, and dub treatments. The cover artwork by Benjamin Kirchhofer intensifies the spirit of the space cruise with an imaginative glimpse of the mysterious alien biomes, fossils, and silhouettes cast by dwarf planets, asteroids, Kuiper belt, and other trans-Neptunian objects.
The nine pieces are titled after astroids and stress Twinkle³ unique ability to create wondrous and quite paradoxical soundscapes that sound light and ethereal but with a strong experimental edge. Bell explores the full timbral range of the shakuhachi flute, associated with Zen Buddhism, between noise and pitch and his rhythmic phrases express warm human breaths. Scott and Ross’ electronics wizardry add elusively yet uplifting melodic veins and sudden, noisy dissonances. These soundscapes are sparked with eccentric humor («Kalliope 22»), weird alien dances («Ryugu 162173», «Ziziyu 29646»), a mysterious spiritual atmosphere («Soma 2815», «Bodea 998» and «Aurelia 419»), Tangerine Dream-tinged dreamscapes («Abnoba 465»), and most of all an innocent optimism.
Richard Scott (analog synth), David Ross (tremoloa, cosmic bow, drosscillator); Clive Bell (shakuhachi, pi saw, khene)