Exposé Online banner

Holger Czukay — Moving Pictures
(Purple Pyramid CLP 9915-2, 1997, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 1998-07-01

Moving Pictures Cover art

If Holger Czukay continues to bring forth projects of the caliber achieved here, he will continue to keep my attention. For Moving Pictures is much more delicate on the sensitive ear than anything I have heard by Can. The uninitiated may prefer to use Hassell and Eno's Fourth World, or the Bush of Ghosts material as reference points. Like the former, Czukay stresses the atmospheric instead of the groove-oriented element. And where Eno looked to Africa (on the latter recording), the Stockhausen disciple uses Indian music as source material. Lest we forget that Czukay has been in this game ever since his experimental work with short-wave radio in the 60s that led to the Canaxis LP. It is a pedigree as such that allows the master of instrumental disguise to wear a different musical wardrobe than the many sugar-coated manifestations like Sheila Chandra, et al.

Much of Moving Pictures paints itself surrounded in a droning mood, backed by with simple drum patterns. "Drak Moon" and "Rhythms of a Simple Life" both portray this barren, darker side. Mention must be made of "All Night Long" though, wherein very clever samples of footsteps play the role of rhythm section — the underlying instrumentation is also astounding — see how he uses bass guitar to emulate a gong. "Longing for Daydreams" flips the coin over for a beautiful soundscape where female voice adds the spice of ethnicity. In keeping with the title, this work hits you with an almost consciously filmic composing method, in that there is a clear foreground and background. On the down side he tends to tramp off course where vocals are concerned. Two spots in particular are bespoiled by a Lou Reed vocal imitation that made no sense in relation to its surrounding context. Other than that, Czukay attempts no shrouding of his cross-cultural appropriations in promo-friendly formats. And while Moving Pictures may not be as consistently on the mark as his unforgettable Plight and Premonition, this scenic aural travelog nevertheless reveals its own magic.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 15, 1997 releases

Related artist(s): Holger Czukay

Latest news

2021-02-14
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more

2021-02-10
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

The Science Group - A Mere Coincidence – Yugoslavian composer Stevan Tickmayer has worked extensively in the fields of 20th Century music (both composed and improvised) and jazz. For this project, he takes a collection of texts by Chris...  (2000) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues