KUNIKO - Xenakis: IX - The Guardian

Whether architects like it or not, buildings will be scruffed up by the humans who use them. The same goes for music, and Iannis Xenakis - architect as well as supremely mathematical composer - loved the unruly energy whipped up by what he called "faithfulness, pseudo-faithfulness and unfaithfulness" in rhythm. He wrote for percussion in a way that demands near mechanical perfection, but it's that "near" that's the crux; it's what makes his dizzyingly intricate pieces so seductive. For her third studio album, percussionist Kuniko (yep, the kind of artist who goes by a single name) takes on the 1978 dance score Pléïades, and treats its effervescent textures to a loose, sensual swing. Who knows what the spatially obsessed Xenakis would have thought of her overdubbing the multiple parts of the sixxen (an instrument of Xenakis's own devising), and it isn't a hugely muscular performance, but the delicacy and sway are enticing. Also on the disc is Rebonds, a 1988 percussion repertoire stalwart that Kuniko plays with a subdued, affectionate touch.

The Guardian
23 April 2015