BEHOLD! I MAKE ALL THINGS NEW
Maverick baroque lutenist Jozef Van Wissem returns to his Incunabulum label for an hypnotic follow-up to his latest works with Jim Jarmusch
Still beloved around our way for his collab with Smegma some decade ago, it’s fair to say that time is a malleable concept to Van Wissem, an artist trading in baroque music in 21st century, and his new album feels like scrying into a parallel dimension where the baroque era never ended. However, in that dimension Van Wissem skilfully prunes the more florid aspects of baroque music to taste, modernising by design with an elegantly deft restraint that pushes his instrument’s putative use along more minimalist angles and subtly fusionist angles, galvanised with electronics.
We can hear something resembling Cajun country styles on ‘A New Earth’, while ‘Your Flesh Will Rise in Glory on The Last Day of The Future Resurrection’ recalls Keiji Haino not just in its title but the gloaming music, too. For more classicist application, turn to the final song ‘The Adornment’ for a fascinating interplay of straight-played strings and shadowy electronics, but the real meat is in the two durational works, each taking up around 14 minutes to cast their magick with mesmerising melodies at opposing, romantic and gothic ends of the register.