Somnambule - Writing About Music

Aki Takase, Alex Schlippenbach, DJ IllVibe ~ Lok 03

Given his reputation as one of the first free jazz bandleaders (he founded the Globe Unity Orchestra in 1966) Alex Schlippenbach’s name is likely to be the main attraction over his wife Aki Takase and guest IllVibe here. Lok 03 consists of twenty short pieces – the longest track is just over three minutes long – which present a variety of piano solos and duos with added turntable action from IllVibe. Alma Ata features an archetypal snake charmer solo manipulated on the decks combined with rather beautiful piano. Ulanbator is haunted by hair-raising air raid siren as a John Cage-like prepared piano clanks away in the background. A small note on the back cover states “Crackles, scratches, surface noise, etc are not faults. They are a part of the concept.” In this age of glitch electronica such a warning seems rather superfluous: anybody who actually listened to the music would realise the playfulness of the performers here. This is an intriguing, challenging release.
Colin Buttimer
May 2005
Published by Jazzwise magazine