The marvel of Map is that a sensation of richness and prodigality surges like a monstrous aviary out of a scene steeped in scrupulousness and consciousness. Jean-Luc Guionnet and Takamaru Nakamura, two players of age and well-tried efficacy, subject their respective backgrounds to a process of conflict and destruction, and in a manner at once manifold and singular, lay open and purge all natural resemblances and affinities between forms in such a way that an underlying menace of a chaos as decisive as it is dangerous is given due emphasis.
Neither of the two is entirely foreign to such territory; both Guionnet and Nakamura are margin-walkers of sorts. On saxophone and organ, the former gravitates toward mammoth textures as austere as they are unruly, while the no-input mixing board technique of the latter is forever insidious and wayward, brimming with a subterranean current of impressions that escapes capture. That being said, never before have either participated in a pairing whose ensuing combinations bleed consequences, reactions, and reciprocal destructions so vigorous, vivid, and easy to perceive.
Each work has a very active presence. More often than not Guionnet's saxophone appears frail and flinty, veering in and out of focus like a snake made out of yellow fog, while from miniscule atoms Nakamura builds a huge roar of sound. Soon enough it all coheres into a physical thing and begins to encircle and tighten around one's head with slow certainty. The proceedings then quicken and everything begins to whistle with the pressure that has accrued. Particularly dramatic is the final work, during which Guionnet switches to church organ. Guionnet's flamboyant playing, his quivers, gesticulations, and defiant yelping does beautiful battle with Nakamura's confrontational noise walls. Each continually tries to trap the other as though in a game of chess. Call this one a stalemate; with their extraordinary fluttering, both Guionnet and Nakamura remain tantalizingly buoyant and just out of reach.
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