Monasteria

A new cd with the duo Bram Stadhouders is made. I think, when it comes to improvising music. There’s about no one I can trust and play with more easily than Bram.

Here are the liner notes by Rene van Peer:

Old buildings that have fallen into disuse often radiate a deep afterglow of their history. This is certainly the case with the virtually deserted old convent on the edge of a village in the southern Dutch province Noord-Brabant. Quietude envelops the empty complex. Some of the rooms resonate with any sound that finds its way there, generously enhancing and expanding it, making it grow and blossom, giving it a new life, breathing an autonomous soul into it. One of these rooms is the former refectory, the hall where the nuns convened to eat and pray. Guitarists Bram Stadhouders and Aart Strootman convened there to record Monasteria. Strootman lives and works in the complex, one of the temporary occupants guarding it until it will be redeveloped for new residents. While he comes from a classical background and is member of some chamber ensembles, Stadhouders has for years been active in improvised music. Being invited by Strootman for a visit, Stadhouders decided to bring the acoustic guitar he had just bought. It turned out be a meeting of kindred spirits. They tried out playing some music, and found that their shared interests caused the differences in their backgrounds to dissolve, boosted undoubtedly by the abundant resonance of the space, and its benevolent spirit. That is when plans for an enduring collaboration and for this album germinated. When they returned to the refectory to record it, they had a technician set up equipment, but he left immediately after that, so it was just the two of them firing music back and forth between them. Nothing was written or decided upon in advance. This hour of music is one sixth what they played. It is their music, it is what went on in their minds, it is bird calls and random sounds. But it is also the soul of that convent, resonating in the constructions they conjured up. A rich afterglow of lives that have vanished forever.



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