Joakim Forsgren
Joakim Forsgren

2021.06.1

Review: Vending Machine

Vital Weekly no 1228

Here we have a duo from Stockholm and I think I had not heard of either musician before. ”Hirou Larsson has a background in acoustic jazz and non-idiomatic improvisation, while Forsgen has played electric bass in punk and rock groups since his early teenage
years”. They talked about doing music together for years and one day Larsson was in Forsgren’s studio, who said: now use this stuff we have. From there on, they started working together, using conventional and less conventional instruments, so have Forsgren playing ”aluminium foil, Baoding balls, drum machine, electric bass, field recordings, kitchenware, rhythm boxes, tape delay, and synthesizers”, while Larson has the ”balalaika, bamboo flute, drum machine, field recordings, folding rule, kitchenware, maracas, metal, nails in a box, Rhodes, sound card case, synthesizers, and tennis racket”. I read all of that and realized that I no idea how this would sound. The answer is easy: strange. The six pieces (about twenty-six minutes in total) are not easily classified. While there are elements from the world of musique concrète, there is also noise, lengthy bits with a rhythm machine ticking time away, coherent, structured bits sitting next to chaotic bits, reminiscent of a box of
objects falling on the kitchen floor. Sometimes the rhythms and the synthesizers are the glue holding a piece together, but just as well everything is in a free fall, without any glue at all. A most curious record, with a lot of variation in approach and throughout something I enjoyed a lot. The variation is mainly in the musical approach this has versus the more abstract use of everyday objects. All of this is created by two people who enjoy what they are doing and with a wicked sense of creating havoc. Strange, chaotic, funny and way too short. (FdW)