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Ellen Allien

LISm

Ellen Allien
7
The creative process for LISm brings to mind "Boléro" by Ravel, which was originally written as a commissioned ballet, but grew to take on a life of its own, becoming the composer's most famous piece of music. Similarly, LISm was originally created by BPitch Control boss Ellen Allien as a collaborative dance piece, performed as "Drama per Musica," under the direction of Alexander Roccoli and Séverine Rième. Like the structure of "Boléro," LISm picks up steam as it moves forward. The piece starts with light, processed flutes, transitions to a repeating guitar figure and abstract sounds in its first half, progresses to more bass-anchored sections in the last half and then climaxes in a crescendo of sorts, moving from slow, experimental uncertainty to beat-driven order. Nebulous words frame LISm, with "falling" repeated with different inflections early on, a sampled "dreaming of you" floating over the two-third mark and "conscience" gracing the final section. Yet, the words only hint at the true meaning of the piece; it is an experience that needs to play out in a linear fashion, felt and absorbed through multiple senses. Abstract as that may sound, it makes sense as the listener sits positioned between stereo speakers feeling the waves of sound break and roll back. (BPitch Control)
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