UN: 'The Final Question' CD
For their last album,'The Simple Plan',Colin Potter & Paul Bradley decided to move more towards performance-orientated music and this was followed by live appearances in Norway,France & Switzerland, playing as UN: - the new name reflecting the new direction. All of the music here was played live - back to the future! Comes in a very handsome laser-cut sleeve. A joint release by ICR & Twentyhertz. ** REVIEW BY FRANS de WAARD on VITAL WEEKLY ** Paul Bradley and Colin Potter have played together before, for instance when they recorded 'The Simple Plan' (see Vital Weekly 716), but apparently they decided to have a joint name together for their ongoing work, which is Un. Their latest venture is called 'The Final Question' and its recorded in France, Switzerland and Norway, which I assume is related to venues, rather than field recordings (the 'thank you' list includes Cave 12 and Nødutgangfestivalen), but melted together into one piece of just under thirty four minutes. Its not difficult to spot where things are cross-faded into another part, but of course that's hardly interesting. I am not sure why but perhaps I expected this to be a work of many drones derived from a series of field recordings, so much to my surprise I hear a lot of synthesizers. I am not sure if these are analogue or digital (perhaps another matter that is not really interesting), and through a fine slow arpeggio Potter and Bradley play some great cosmic, bringing us right back to that Flowmotion compilation LP Potter released some thirty years ago. It takes up what is perhaps the second part of this piece. Throughout there is a whole bunch of other sounds to be noted in this, like fine high end frequencies, low end keyboards and whatever else feeds off through what must have been an endless bank of sound effects. It connects very well to the current world of cosmic music, and at the same time breaks away from the field recordings processing they are known for, especially in their solo work. It continues where we had them with 'The Simple Plan', but then in an even more spacious (literally!) mood. Excellent release. **REVIEW FROM AQUARIUS RECORDS** Whatever this final question is that Paul Bradley and Colin Potter are asking, it is fucking deep. The stalwart British drone artists Bradley & Potter (the latter of whom is also known as being a long-standing member of Nurse With Wound) have collaborated a number of times in the past; and here they present their latest work under the new moniker Un. Not to be confused with the pre-Double Leopards / pre-Fursaxa audio narcotic, this Un brings Potter almost full circle to his early '80s explorations of cosmically tinged synth music, which was marvelously anthologized on his 4cd set Ancient History. An ominous, sawtooth drone sets the stage for an analogue synth take on dark ambient tension, with plenty of ghastly cascades recalling a chilling John Carpenter horror sound design that's been getting quite the workover as of late. But when the arpeggiations begin to come into focus, Bradley and Potter deflate the claustrophobic drones that opened the record, spilling forth an emotive smear of glistening synths and buried melodies orchestrated out the same infatuation with Klaus Schulze, Cluster, and Manuel Gottsching that spawned Emeralds, Outer Space, etc. By the end of the longform drifting, the Final Question becomes beautiful, maudlin, and rapturous. Quite a trip Bradley and Potter have engineered!