Bruno Spoerri / Massonix – Hommage Au Fromage / Hollingsville LP (Disposable Music 007)
Hommage Au Frommage is perhaps one of the best titles we have ever seen written on a dusty box of a quarter inch tape reel. However, without a crumb of irony the music that appears on this session also ranks highly in Finders Keepers list of archival triumphs. An early 70s conceptual jazz pop album combining dulcimers, harps, a Jew’s harp and what sounds like a tap dancer instantly earns itself its own protective niche shared only by certain vintage recordings by Vladimir Cosma and The Roundtable – but when accentuated by a heavy weight back beat and the added information that it was commissioned by the national Swiss Cheese Consortium this record commands further inspection and repeat listens. Starting with all the traits of a moody Morricone or Bruno Nicolai giallo soundtrack and breaking into a healthy cross section of modal jazz, tape manipulation, electronic grinds, Brazilian accordion and (dare we say it) b-boy break beats, Hommage Au Frommage by Swiss electronic jazz pioneer Bruno Spoerri (who else?) is a record quite unlike anything else in your record collection and knowing how hard some of you dig, that’s a challenge.
The music found on Graham Massey’s Hollingsville record was originally created for a twelve-part radio series on Resonance 104.4 FM . The series, Hollingsville, was conceived and presented by writer Ken Hollings and would focus each week on a different aspect of man’s historical relationship with technology. Informal discussions with a series of specially invited guests were accompanied by custom-built theme tunes by Massey, His approach was intentionally leaning toward the Bakelite and hot valve nostalgia of a some forgotten Expo or World’s Fair.
The resulting Hollingsville soundtrack exercises Massey’s authentic knowledge of original analogue machines in their rawest form and triumphantly draws comparisons with the likes of Henk Badings, Oscar Sala and Kid Balton from the pre-synth era of electric keyboards and tape manipulation. Enlisting the talents of long-running collaborator, opera singer Seaming To, Massey dons his seldom-used Massonix moniker and produces some of his best conceptual music yet which, by design, promises to withstand the tests of time and technological trend.