released February 3, 2016
“The recordings were made over a period of a couple of years. The windmill is located about a mile north of the town where i live, on what i assume is ranch land used for raising cattle. It was once used to pull water from underground to fill a couple of large tanks nearby. It’s in a bad state and no longer in use. There are two large crows nests at the top, and the inner workings are laying on the ground next to it.”
The recordings were made using a mini-disc recorder and hand made contact microphone. They are monaural recordings.
Jeph Jerman is appearing in a variety of musical groups and collaborative projects across different genres for more than three decades. From the nineties, we can see in his extensive work a great interest in the sole act of listening. Rather than a classical musician, he is more suggestive of a sound wanderer who sets off daily from his home to the surrounding Arizona desert (characteristically named Sonoran desert), where he records sound fragments or collects found objects which he uses in his improvisations and performances.
As a contemplative walker without a set destination, he is interested in the pure sound without references. To what we listen is not so important, what matters most is the time, place and the way we listen. Unlike other field recording artists, Jerman is not interested in the aesthetic richness or sonic variety, but simplicity, gentle differences, vibrations, moderation, and the primordial animalism on the quiet edge of organic and inorganic nature.
The 34° 111′ 3″ N 111° 95′ 4″ W named field recording is a collection of three pieces, in which Jerman maps a specific place and which carefully reflect his life philosophy. It’s a recording of an abandoned windmill in different times, stages of decomposition and weather conditions. The symbol of the circle and rotation and the moaning material shaped by nature elements subtly fit in the comprehensive sound diary and environment where Jerman moves and lives.
„These days I don’t try to evoke anything. I make sound that’ll hopefully be listened to.“
Jeph Jerman has already collaborated with artists like Jon Mueller, Ben Owen, Taku Sugimoto, Tony Whitehead, John Hudak, Bernhard Günter, Greg Davis, Tim Barnes, Aaron Dilloway, and others.
Recorded by Jeph Jerman
Cover: Jakub Juhás, Zoltán Czakó
Edition of 70 copies. Numbered on the cassette shell. The first 35 come in hand-made cloth bag packaging, inclunding a small found object.
The execution of these recordings is wonderful. You can vaguely tell what you’re hearing, but you cannot hear it in a way that doesn’t lend itself to a teleological perspective. These sounds must be heard as purposive music, and they do that in a way that I find particularly effective in this work. It’s much more about tensions than it is about aesthetic qualities of particular sounds. It has more in common with the fragility of the human ear in virtue of its use of homemade contact microphones. Here what is important is the field of sound, not the sounds within the field. A great work and a fantastic execution. I like it a lot…. Eleaticstranger
Corrugated sounds reverberate in hollow tanks while the clanging structure carries the echo of circular movements within. These are uncluttered takes that don’t try to be pristine. Airy and porous they welcome extraneous aural incidents. On a number of occasions, for instance, I thought I could hear the sound of aircraft, while on the second track, 8:20, distant voices faintly filter through the rattling of the battered metal… Gianmarco Del Re (Fluid Radio)
Whatever Jerman does, mixing or registration, it’s not possible to hear, but there is a chilling beauty in these recordings. The wind vibrating these metal objects in a calm and peaceful way, but without sounding too overtly ambient make this a great release. I have no idea why this is divided into three separate pieces, but I’m sure there is a good reason for it. Excellent release!… Frans de Waard (Vital Weekly)
Listening to monaural soundwork forces the brain to create a place for each component of the whole and to allot implicit co-ordinates. Some distant, some over to one side, some outside the focus and some so close as to be almost within the ear. It in no way detracts, but rather allows another level for the listener to work with. Of course it is equally possible to listen without any work at all accepting sounds as sounds, but I personally make pictures… Chris Whitehead (Sonic Field)
It’s a dance between realism and deliberate obscurity. Jerman’s choice to present the album in mono – as well as opting for lower quality forms of microphone – mean that the album rattles and distorts with the imprint of circumstance: subjective perception, time-specificity, the imperfect delivery of the medium… ATTN magazine
Si muove all’esterno dei confini della abituale definizione di costruzione musicale Jerman, prediligendo il ruolo di fine cesellatore di suoni alla meditabonda ricerca di flussi reali che nell’astrazione rivelino un senso più profondo. Ricerca pura… SoWhat
The mill still spins, but no longer pumps water. What would the area be like had it continued to pump water onto the ground? What wildlife would it have nourished through these many years? Like many of Jerman’s works, a crisp, interesting sonic world plays out for us, and, in enriching that world, the first editions of the cassette came with one of 36 small items found near the site, including the animal bones that grace the cover. The web page presents a photo of all of the objects… Josh Ronsen (Monk Mink Pink Punk)