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Three Rules And Eight Points
The Song About Navigation
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OFFICER! Paragraphs And Principles

CD album | gg366
Officer! was founded by Londoner Mick Hobbs. His roots were in the Rock In Opposition scene of the late 70s and early 80s. Initially he worked as guitarist in The Work, subsequently he became closely associated with This Heat and their Cold Storage Studio in Brixton, working with artists like Family Fodder, Catherine Jauniaux or Zeena Parkins. The band's first album "8 New Songs By Mick Hobbs" came out in 1982 on casette only. It was followed by the second album, "Ossification". "Paragraphs and Principles" is the most ambitious album yet by the experimental, maverick pop group Officer.! The band has surprised itself with this dazzling yet almost dangerous collection of pieces that keep alive the glorious memory of composer Cornelius Cardew – comrade and champion. His work, while of its time, remains strangely contemporary. It is difficult music – mystifying perhaps, idealistic certainly, and contentious without doubt. That said, Cardew was also drawn to rousing, goose-bump melodies that wear their politics on their sleeves. Since his untimely and sinister death in 1981, the world has come full circle and Cardew’s desire for rebellion, democratisation, rejection of crass popularism, and a revolution in politics, thought and approach have all become relevant once more. Officer!’s tribute to Cardew features several dynamic re-interpretations of his key works, as well as new music that draws inspiration from his principles and philosophy. For this outing, Officer! is Mick Hobbs, Felix Fiedorowicz and Bill Gilonis alongside a stunning line-up of 30 performers from 8 countries. No one knows quite how this project came about – it’s almost an international conspiracy, and certainly a closely guarded secret. We hope only that upon their unleashing, these fierce new sounds may be heard by as many ears as possible. Full tracklist: 1. Three Rules And Eight Points 2. Two Paragraphs 3. The Song Of Ruthless Criticism 4. The Song About Navigation 5. The Croppy Boy 6. Moscow Nights 7. Make The Past Serve The Present 8. Winter Potato #3 9. The Telephone Song 10. The East Is Red 11. Fish And Ships 12. Albania, My Dear Comrade And Brother 13. Unintended Music For Ensemble 14. Red Flag Prelude. Price: € 18,-/copy incl. worldwide shipping.

Officer!, die bereits vor knapp 40 Jahren von Bassist und Gitarrist Mick Hobbs ins Leben gerufene Combo, veröffentlicht in erweiterter Besetzung ein Tribute-Album mit Neuinterpretationen ausgewählten Arbeiten des Komponisten Cornelius Cardew. Cardew studierte Klavier, Komposition und elektronische Musik und gilt als einer der einflussreichsten Komponisten des späten 20. Jahrhunderts. Als Musiker war er Mitglied des bekannten Improvisations-Kollektivs AMM. Ebenfalls weit über die Grenzen der Neuen Musik hinaus einflussreich waren seine Arbeiten im Bereich grafischer Partituren, seine Komposition Treatise wurde von zahlreichen Acts unterschiedlicher musikalischer Herkunft interpretiert.
(African Paper, November 2021)

Das Zitat aus dem Booklet ist für den Titel: Make the Past Serve the Present. Zu jedem Titel stehen dort ausführliche Informationen. Mir gefällt der sehr freie Umgang der Musiker mit dem Material, das Ihnen Cardew bietet. Ihre Kreationen und Entwürfe. Da hemmt kein falscher Respekt die Aneignung seiner Musik und das macht für mich die Qualität dieser Veröffentlichung aus. Sie macht neugierig auf das Werk von Cardew und das ist doch das beste, was passieren kann.
(Radiohörer, December 2021)

Le noir éclate au contact de mélodies fusillées sur des murs d avant-gardisme tonitruant, portées par des musiciens voltigeurs, malaxant des matériaux friables projetés sur des enceintes volatiles. Chaque titre est un espace et chaque espace est l occasion de tester la vulnérabilité du temps, empruntant à l effritement des heures, des minutes et des secondes, sa capacité à absorber l histoire et ses traditions, revues, digérées et corrigées. Très fortement recommandé.
(Silence And Sound, January 2022)

È probabilmente il lavoro più ambizioso e complesso firmato Officer! anche perché, come già chiarito nel titolo, è figlio del desiderio di tenere viva la memoria del compositore Cornelius Cardew, uno dei più importanti musicisti d avanguardia dello scorso secolo, non soltanto per la sua Londra.
(Music Map, January 2022)

With some 30 performers contributing parts, largely remotely, Paragraphs And Principles ranges from buoyant woodwind-bedecked instrumentals to disorderly improvised passages to synth pop-powered broadsides about crop harvesting to many-angled callbacks to the RIO approach of old to samples of Enver Hoxha speeches to, ultimately, a rendition of The Red Flag because that is how such impassioned assemblies as this must end.
(The Quietus, January 2022)

Engaging, baffling, naive and hyper-complex by turns. Its a record I strongly recommend to the curious.
(Chris Cutler, January 2022)