CNVCD004 | 22.09.2011
format: CD | packaging: digipack
duration: 79 minutes, 10 tracks
limited to 300 copies
All music by Will Long and Danielle Baquet-Long
Recorded in 2005-2006 at home in Huntington Beach, California
Originally self-released as a limited, handmade edition
new master by m.a.tolosa, Madrid 2011
I am a frame.
I am the frame looking at me, sleeping.
I am a frame
In a dream crooked, at me.
I am a frame shrugging
I am hanging
In a triangle, a knot
Not a tie,
I am a frame.
I am the frame looking at me, sleeping
I am a frame
In a dream even, at you.
I am a frame off the wall
With movement; falling,.
I am crooked,
Spun off course by a hand,
The worth of suffering
Is in time, we place ourselves between
The moss of recency
[ Dani Baquet-Long ]
We naturally begin with Sunlir, which Celer recorded in 2005-06 at home in Huntington Beach, California and self-released as a limited, hand-made edition. It's now been given a second life courtesy of CONV, a non-profit net-label based in Madrid, Spain and run by Miguel Angel Tolosa, who's re-issued it in a 300-copy run. In simplest terms, the release amounts to eighty minutes and ten tracks of vintage Celer: endlessly long lines of reverberant shimmer whose dream-like rise and fall induces serenity, calm, and contemplation. Tones at times billow into gaseous formations, resulting in vaporous settings such as "Lithospheric Plates are Cleanly Forgotten" and "Awake for a Wake, Dead but for a Life," whose metallic timbre calls to mind the gong-based recordings Thomas Köner released in the early '90s (Nunatak, Teimo, and Permafrost). Elsewhere, "Whimsical at the Cretaceous Extinction" oozes mystery as it emerges out of the fog with immense exhalations that mimic the subdued rise and fall of a sleeping body.
The ten tracks on "Sunlir," which according to press release are "Dedicated to Wendy Carlos," continue the eternal procession of releases from the enigmatic Celer. The duo of Will Long and the late Danielle Baquet-Long set down enough musical explorations that Celer could go on posthumously as voluminously as Charles Bukowski. The looping tracks on "Sunlir" date from 2006 and, like most of their work, was self-released and rare to find even then.
Opening the set is "Spelunking The Arteries Of Our Ancestors," which a straightforward, minimal ambient piece with subtle fluctuations of tone. "The Look That Falls Upon Us Extends As If A Landform" offers more of a swirling, Legeti-esque soundscape; "How Long To Hold Up A Breathless Face" is similar in cinematic imagery. "Igenous Matters Most" projects an echoing, haunting tone, as if recorded in a wide, empty, but holy building; that chanting doesn't break out is almost disappointing. "Vitiating The Incline" has an insistent but lush pulse that takes its time in drawing out its many colors.
The longest piece, the ten minute "Espy The Horizon, Miss The Lost Road," is consistently monotone, but its silky pulse is reverent, content to advance as is, at its own pace. It too could be considered a meditative, holy piece.
"Sunlir" continues the majestic, tragic and expansive world of Celer. It is available, in many formats, at their Bandcamp site; that there are many options with which to hear this music is fitting, as it should be approached with the idea that there are many gates through which to enter.
[ Mike Wood ]
Proyecto prestigioso dentro de la música "drone" atmosférica, CELER cesó su actividad bajo este nombre tras la muerte de Danielle Baquet (miembro fundador). Sin embargo se van a recuperar sus primeros trabajos publicados en CDR hace años con una calidad sonora pobre y en ediciones muy limitadas. Sunlir es el mejor ejemplo, donde la calidad de sonido ha sido muy mejorada tras un fino trabajo de remasterización. Edición limitada y muy cuidada, en digipack, por el recomendable sello de Madrid Con-V . Si te gusta el trabajo de artistas como Machinefabriek o ciertas cosas de Francisco López deberías escucharlos.
[ Andrés Noarbe ]
Vital Weekly 801
The story of Celer is probably well-known by now, certainly if you have been reading these pages before: in a relatively short time span the duo of Will Long and Danielle Baquet-Long created a whole bunch of releases as Celer, all dealing, more or less, with what we can roughly 'drone' and 'atmospheric' music. Baquet-Long died suddenly in 2009 and it was decided by Long that no more music was to be released as Celer. Anything that comes out now as Celer is either old and unreleased and re-issues of older work, such as this release, which was originally a self-released CDR (thus they gain a status like Maeror Tri, who early 90s cassettes found their way on CD and CDR by now). What can we say about this music that we haven't said before? Nothing much I guess, but that doesn't mean I say anything about the quality of the music. Apparently Celer use a variety of instruments, although none are specified here (but it was on other releases) but these are transformed into abstract glacier like masses of sound, slowly moving and lowly humming, just as pretty much anything else I heard from Celer. Its hard to say if and what the differences are between this particular releases and the others I heard. Surely they are there but appear to be minor. When listening to this CD I was thinking about all of this. Surely there are people who like music to progress, slow, quick but inevitably moving to something else and there are people (in both cases people are consumers, not musicians themselves) who like things to remain the same, no matter how many releases an artist does, and this sometimes applies to musicians who release a lot, such as Fear Falls Burning, Francisco Lopez, Merzbow or Machinefabriek (to mention a few): all with a large dedicated group of fans and Celer has joined their ranks. Be it that no more new music will appear, with their back catalogue (which is indeed vast) filled with obscurities. They surely can see some interesting, re-mastered titles in the future. Me, I belong, perhaps more to the first group of consumers, those who like some things to change every now and then. That said, I thought 'Sunlir' was a pretty fine nocturnal listening thing.
[ Frans de Waard ]
CON-V EDITION | 2015