CD ART011 - DALBUKKI
DALBUKKI is the short version of the Korean words Dal (moon), Geobuk (terrapin) and Tokki (rabbit).
Moon, terrapin and rabbit can be found in lots of Korean fairy tales. One of this fairy tales in the Pansori –
the Korean traditional opera – is called 'Su-Gung Ga'*. The story is about a crafty rabbit and a faithful terrapin.
Ge-Suk Yeo's DALBUKKI deforms the story and transforms it into modern spirit: Now it narrates from a terrapin which fells in love with the moon, a raging search of the rabbit and somebody who feels followed by the moon. - The story, which is already humorous and fantastic in its original version, now gets almost an absurd twist. At DALBUKKI Ge-Suk Yeo tells us the story as a colourful carpet of sounds. The mere endless seesaw between the actors gets a game of music and sounds. Tatters of the original story appear here and there. In doing so Ge-Suk Yeo's voice is accompanied by electro acoustic sound-samples.
*The story of 'Su-Gung-Ga'
The CD contains 3 electroacoustic sound projects by the Korean vocalist Ge-Suk Yeo: 'DALBUKKI', 'Time Sculptures I' and 'Voice from afar'. For the music Ge-Suk Yeo used her own voice, spoken words and singing, which she electroacoustically manipulated. Besides that she used field recordings, all kinds of everyday sounds and - most important - her deep background as a classically trained soprano, her love for a broad spectrum of music styles as well as for visual art.
Listen to this beautiful world of sounds which after a while are so present that you feel you are part of it. A world filled with gossip, trifles, bubbling and whispering beings, true sound sculptures emerge to the listener. A fabulous journey for open ears.
Compositions, recording, vocals, mix, mastering by Ge-Suk Yeo
Production: Bernhard Woehrlin, ART.CappuccinoNet.com
Graphics: Dalbukki by Ge-Suk Yeo
Ge-Suk Yeo - electroacoustic music, vocals
04. Time Sculptures I
05. Voice from afar
Published 09|2005 on ART.CappuccinoNet.com
[Product ID: ART 008, ILN: 4260046970125, LabelCode: 00327]
"While we are on the subject of edgy and experimental vocals, we shouldn’t pass by two recordings by a Korean artist GE-SUK YEO, who calls herself an electroacoustic sound sculptor and her works are labeled “sound projects.” Even the striking artwork on covers of these two recordings she calls “sound portraits.” On DALBUKKI (Art 11) she performs solo (Yeo, vcl, electroacoustic music. September 2005, Seoul and Hamburg) a sequence of five compositions (Dalbuk/ Bukki/ Dalbukki/ Time Sculptures I/ Voice From Afar. 65:40). The first three pieces are a suite based on Korean folk tales, where Yeo uses her breath and many spoken words altered and in loops, as well as her lovely mezzo-soprano voice, to create hypnotic and very ambient music. Like much of this type of music, it is very three dimensional, centered on sounds moving in space. In other words, it is best heard live or with a good set of headphones.
On WHITE ROOM (ARTcappuccinonet 12), YEO is joined by WITTWULF Y MALIK (Malik, cel; Yeo, vcl, electroacoustic music. August 2002 & June 2003, Hamburg, Germany) for a series of five “sound sculptures” (Entrance/ Room I/ Room II/ Room III/ Room IV. 44:36.) The addition of Malik on cello changes the ambience created, as he uses his instrument sometimes like a walking bass and sometimes strumming it like a guitar, as well as thumping it and slapping it. This seems to root the atmosphere of the music to an identifiable instrumental center, though Malik is just as abstract and extended as Yeo. These recordings remind me of the environment oriented work of Boulez and the mechanical experiments of Ligeti at times, and if you are interested in these kinds of spatial compositions, then you will find Ge-Suk Yeo an important discovery."
"Since its beginnings in the mid-twentieth century, electroacoustic music was chiefly used to electronically reshape the raw sounds of instruments and objects, but few of the pioneers of this medium employed the human voice as a primary sound source. Some composers of musique concrète may have felt that the voice was too closely identified with traditional song and too expressive to be properly adapted to the more abstract dictates of electronic music; if it was used at all, it needed to be masked and depersonalized to work as satisfactory material. Others, though, especially among contemporary artists, have found in the voice a rich source of sonorities for manipulation, from sung tones, spoken or whispered words, and altered phonemes, to percussive tongue clicks, buzzing fricatives, and other "mouth music" effects. On her 2005 album Dalbukki, Ge-Suk Yeo amply demonstrates how she exploits her own voice and creates soundscapes that run from mysterious "narratives," to mechanical twittering and cosmic thundering, covering a wide range of pitches, dynamics, and timbres in the process. This classically trained singer and avant-garde composer seldom disguises her voice beyond recognition, yet she alters it enough to produce deep bass parts, fragmented passages of speech at different speeds, and striking non-verbal effects, which she blends with other non-vocal sounds and textures taken from her field recordings. The experience of hearing the three-movement Dalbukki will vary between listeners, depending on one's knowledge of the Korean language or familiarity with the fairy tales related; but how well one enjoys the interplay of vocalizations and electronic figurations is largely a matter of taste. To some extent, Yeo's music is overly linear and layered in tracks, without much variety of gestures and weak simulation of spatial dimensions; and her patterns sometimes seem a little too automatically generated and artificial. Yeo deserves credit for her resourcefulness and inventiveness within what seem to be limited technical means, and Dalbukki, Time Sculptures I, and Voice from Afar all have their moments of cleverness, originality, and odd beauty. However, the hypnotic quality and the repetitiousness of her music may be easiest for fans of minimalism and ambient music to appreciate. The sound of these recordings is a little dry and flat; without any indications to the contrary, this is probably due to the use of analog tapes for some sources."
"Arte in tazza (con molto caffé e poca schiuma)
Questi due deliziosi CD ci introducono nel mondo di Ge-Suk Yeo, una cantante, musicista elettroacustica e artista visuale coreana che divide la sua attività fra Amburgo e Seul. Spostatasi dalla Corea all’Europa per inseguire il fascino dell’opera lirica tedesca e italiana, ha studiato a Berlino in tal senso e ha sviluppato la sua voce verso le tonalità del soprano, e ha inoltre collaborato con numerosi musicisti dell’area sperimentale europea ed asiatica. Ma per ulteriori notizie su Ge-Suk Yeo, e per la sua discografia, rimando al sito ART.CappuccinoNet - qualcosa di diverso dal semplice sito di un’etichetta discografica - che è gestito da lei stessa. Questa recensione è infatti dedicata esclusivamente alle sue due più recenti pubblicazioni.
“Dalbukki” è stato registrato in completa solitudine e, oltre alle acrobazie vocali manipolate elettroacusticamente, presenta numerose registrazioni d’ambiente quasi sempre catturate alla dimensione del quotidiano. Il brano che titola il disco, diviso in tre parti, è una parola composta dai nomi Dal (luna), Geobuk (tartaruga d’acqua dolce) e Takki (coniglio), trilogia di ‘personaggi’ caratteristici di molte fiabe coreane. È un pezzo eccezionale che mi ha ricordato il Robert Wyatt di Las Vegas Tango, seppure qui vi sia indubbiamente un maggior rigore, e il Bernhard Gal di “Bestimmung, New York”. Affascinante pure Time Sculptures I, una lunga esposizione fatta di linee ripetitive, che sembrano essere tutte di natura percussiva, ruotanti attorno ad una metronomica goccia di suono. In Voice From Afar i suoni percussivi, quanto mai eterei, sono infine miscelati con un intreccio di voci.
“White Room” è invece un progetto, realizzato insieme al violoncellista Wittwulf Y Malik che prevede un’entrata nella stanza e quattro tappe all’interno di essa. È qui più in evidenza la cantante affascinata dal mondo dell’opera lirica, anche se il suo mood espressivo è preservato dall’ingessatura, tipica di quel mondo, ed ha un preciso riferimento in certa arte free-form. E poi dalla sua parte c’è una elasticità paurosa, come appare evidente nei lamenti e sussurri, ai limiti del respiro, che rendono prezioso l’inizio di Room 2. La personalità di questa Lady è tale che si rischia di dimenticare per strada la presenza dello strumentista tedesco, e pure si tratta di una individualità altrettanto forte ed eclettica che, con le sue acrobazie dal taglio potente e drammatico, supporta ai limiti del non plus ultra i movimenti ondulatori della sua pard.
Questi CD sono due piccole chicche all’interno di un catalogo quanto mai interessante. Magari ne riparliamo. Chissà? "