Humberto Luis Schenone – ‘Um Perto’, A Percussion Trip (Clinical Archives)
Not sure if it’s the trendy, hip and happening circles I tend to move in or just the nature of the Creative Commons scene but this album has turned out to be a bit of a rarity amongst my recent explorations. Not because it’s particularly radical or extraordinary but compared to the Rock, Electronica and billion different variations of Dance which are floating around out there this album full of slightly ethereal but technically grounded percussion music is a nice change. It’s basically a guy with a load of drums and things you can hit doing what he does best, drumming (amazingly enough…)
There is a certain experimental edge going on here, the whole thing seeming to focus on the creation of all consuming sound scapes as opposed to making clear cut, easy listening songs but at heart it’s a musicians album, all about playing what you play well and not trying to overstate it and I rather like it. The whole thing is not only immersive but it’s almost hypnotic, sending you into what a Goan Hippy would probably call a transcendental meditative state but which, to the more grounded amongst us, is just getting into the rhythym. And what’s more it does this without seeming overly pretentious, largely thanks to the simplicity of it all.
Production is just what it should be, largely invisible, nothing here sounds overly polished or clean but everything is focused on the music as it’s made, as opposed to distorting it in search of a false finished project more indebted to software than anyones actual talent.
‘Um Perto’ is listed over at Archive.org as ‘Afro-Percussion’ which I suppose is an understandable if slightly pointless classification given that it fits into a fairly universal school of music and could just as easily be compared to Indian, American or European counterparts, even if the instruments used are African in origin. Indeed my first thought on listening was of Ravi Shankar or Hamza El-Din but like I say, there’s no real need to label this sort of thing thanks to its universally recognisable nature.
So, download, add to the playlist, hit play and tune out, maaan.