Kuijken, Jan - Vertigo
Jan KUIJKEN (Cellos, piano, noises), George VAN DAM (Violins), Paul DE CLERCK (Viola), Dirk DESCHEEMAEKER (Clarinet, Bass Clarinet), Pierre BERNARD (Flutes), André PICHAL (Horn).
It has been 10 years since Jan KUIJKEN'S first album "LOUISE AVENUE - Let's Take One More..."; during this time he has taken part in different musical ensembles and formulas, both in concert and in the studio. And since 1996 he has gained a solid reputation as a composer for dance and theatre performances where he has had the opportunity to compose and create in different ways. The album "Vertigo" is the fruit of the work he has done for several theatre and dance pieces. And to make the music from these pieces work on a CD, each composition has been rethought and reworked. Written for specific instruments, and even for specific musicians, the music is constructed on a base of composition and improvisation, of seenity and tension. The composition is sometimes fixed, sometimes free, and is built more around a way of playing it rather than the definition of all the parameters of a musical score. And on the one hand there is a definite relationship between the instruments which reminds us of Jan's "classical" background, but at the same time the way the pieces are articulated is contemporary in its non-metricality. The superimposition of these two poles creates simultaneously a sense of security and of the improbable, imbalance in an equilibrium. And all this is accentuated by the almost complete absence of percussion or rhythmic base; the pieces develop around climaxes and emotion. Improvisation plays a primordial role. Particularly with this group of musicians, KUIJKEN has understood how to communicate to them the way of confusing the listener by playing a structure with such liberty that one has the impression that it is improvised, and of improvising with such a clear vision that it seems to have been written. To bring everyting together, KUIJKEN has rewritten over certain improvisations, and has overdubbed cellos to emphasise the work and sound of this instrument. "Vertigo" is like a series of contrasted tableaux, from the pared down to the complex, from lightness to intensity. Each piece is its own world, with its perspectives and colours, but all of the music on the album is clearly Jan KUIJKEN's, one of the many facets of his art - that of the creation of music for performance, for dance and theatre."