Fahmi Mursyid | One Instrument Sessions
One Instrument (LP/DL)
From Java, via the One Instrument record label, heralds the deep sensual organic compositions of the Fahmi Mursyid sessions. Save for the press release, a listener may not comprehend that each of these six arrangements consist of one instrument each (all traditional Sundanese) – a strict guideline for the project. What baffles my ears and mind even further is that only one condenser mic was implemented in the recordings. One look at the cover art and you get an idea for the general hue of the timbres which glimmer throughout this ‘mini-album.’
The tracks are ripe with lush micro-tonal exploration. From the first note, the western mind is transformed with tenderness. What follows is an ingratiatingly diverse path of syncopation, percussive melodic moods which conclude with an airy ethereal flute feature. The ‘granular synthesis’ of the sound design within the twenty four minute ep far exceeds the temporal measure. Fascination with and mastery of these selected instruments is majestically communicated by the artist. One slips easily into an enthralled reception and respect for the performer, the instrument and the layering/production which seamlessly coalesce within the tracks – each of which are of modest length (3-6 minutes).
I find a humility in the process and presentation of ‘One Instrument Sessions.’ I find myself smitten a bit with the modesty of the project. It’s punchy instrumental world music on the brink of bizarre pop. What I recall during my attentive listening, are my memories of witnessing a gamelan orchestra performance at MIT or listening to Philip Glass’ ‘Aquas da Amazonia’ in my college dorm room. But these sessions are compact; they transcend the snap-shot allure initially presupposed.
Mursyid’s career began in 2011 and has incorporated found objects along with the use of computer processes to generate glitch-natural noise. Following this introduction to his work – one which clearly provided parameters begetting focus and finesse – I am full of intrigue. I fully intend to follow his work as well as explore his discography. Others too may be likewise captivated upon absorbing this expose of contemporary Indonesian experimental neoclassical music.