Avant Music News

The title of this release by Norwegian guitarist Kim Myhr perfectly captures the atmosphere of highly saturated, sonically rich music on offer. Playing only an acoustic twelve-string guitar, Myhr creates a dense, orchestral sound that does indeed give the impression of all limbs singing all at once.

As a solo instrument the twelve-string guitar is a choir of its own. The arrangement of its strings in unison or octave pairings makes for a choric effect that Myhr channels into complex, unstable chords that shimmer and envelop the listener. On the aptly titled Weaving with Choir and on Sleep Nothing Eat Nothing, rapidly strummed chords build up a thick texture permeated by beats and sustained tones that sound at times like bowed piano strings. On Weaving with Choir Myhr accentuates the slight dissonances of out of phase, doubled strings by laying on harmonies of minor seconds. The texturally lighter Descent, built around a slowly repeated motif with a descending figure in the bass, differs from the frantic Leaping into Periphery, with its manic, ghost-note arpeggios on muted strings and spiky, harp-like timbres. The slowly strummed, unchanging chord on Blinky leaves space between soundings that allows its reverberations to hang in the air like so much transparent connective tissue.

Overall, an aurally lush, harmonically challenging music that’s unapologetically beautiful even at its sparsest.