Painting The Passports Brown


"This, the third solo album recorded by the artist currently known as Bruce Russell, consists of three live slabs of improvised guitar, electronics, and analogue tape loops, recorded live in Melbourne, Australia in May 1999. This was the first of two visits he made to Australia in that year, the second being in the company of Alastair Galbraith as A Handful of Dust. These recordings are totally solo, built respectively around a pre-recorded seven metre loop taken from the Anabase LP by Dust (Black Flies #1 & #2), and a slowed down and reversed tape of thumb piano improvisation (With Rimbaud in Abyssinia). These extended works are less brutal than the pieces featured on the first two solo albums, with more space and attendant dynamics in evidence. They abrade, rather than assault, the ears. This album represents a step forward in BR's solo work, integrating the pre-recorded and live sounds ever more fully into a seamless whole. The recordings have been edited at the front and back, but otherwise are presented totally live as recorded to minidisc by Melbourne resident and Freeway Sound label curator Marco Fusinato. The Rimbaud track is subtitled 'Ass Backwards' as the reversal of the backing tape was an unintended but fortunate accident, resulting from a failure to rewind the tape after the first show. These kind of random factors do so much to enrich the work of improvisers of all stripes, as witnessed by the music on this compact disc. Going on at length about the artist responsible for these recordings would be needless in the case of the very great majority of those reading these words. Suffice to say he performs and records with the Dead C, A Handful of Dust, and Pieters/Russell/ Stapleton, manages the label on which this excellent disc has been released, and takes the kind of holiday snaps of bridges and buildings with which the cover is decorated. A 10" vinyl postscript to this recordings is being released about the same time on the Smalltown Supersound label in Norway, that record being of a much more dense and apocalyptic guitar-squall nature, recorded solo at one of the Melbourne Dust dates referred to earlier."