Exposé Online banner

The Silverman — Blank for Your Own Message
(Beta-lactam Ring mt208, 2008, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2009-07-01

Blank for Your Own Message Cover artThe secondary title for this release is “A Zen Opera in Seven Parts,” and I will set aside any questions about the appropriateness of the Buddhist reference. If you really want to call it an opera, it’s the only opera I know that has no words and no singers. It is in fact a set of audio collages of varying degrees of musicality. There are long passages of toneless sound that are equivalent to electronic ambient music of the most abstract sort. There are other passages where a kind of rhythmic energy develops – in fact the first track sets this up with a brief rhythmic motif before devolving into found sounds and indistinct loops, with subtle reappearances of variations on the opening motif. And while it is true that there are no melodies or the trappings of conventional composition, the experience is never grating. There are no outbursts of irritating noise, no shocks, just a wandering flow of sounds. And it doesn’t overstay its welcome, either, clocking in around the 40 minute mark. Rather than thinking about it too much, you need to close your eyes, open your ears, and let the sounds permeate your consciousness, bringing up abstract images, a DIY inner light show. And for that it is elegantly suited, if not for close musical analysis of the traditional sort.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 37, 2008 releases

Related artist(s): The Silverman (Phil Knight)

Latest news

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Flower Kings - Paradox Hotel – The good news is that Paradox Hotel includes a kick-ass prog rock instrumental, “Pioneers of Aviation,” that’s about one of the best things The Flower Kings have ever done. The bad...  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues