An evolved revelation of the concept explored in his original Landwerk release, Salsburg explores repetition, anachronism and longing on this spectacular record. Gorgeous and poignant, I will be coming back to this again and again.
Favorite track: V (Through A Crystal Unluminous).
"And it declareth of the end and doth not lie; though it tarry, wait for it, because it will surely come; it will not delay." (Habakkuk 2:3)
Landwerk No. 2 is a second volume of compositions built around samples from 78-rpm phonograph records—in this case, two klezmer sides, one Yiddish folk song, and one tune by a Slovak miners’ orchestra from Northeastern Pennsylvania, home of six generations of Salsburgs. While the first volume just happened to coincide with the first months of 2020’s problematic peculiarity, No. 2 was undertaken in the depths of the late summer and early fall, when political/social/existential despair hung at their heaviest. These are musical attempts to translate the past into the present, or to redeem the present through the past, or to discover, in Michael Löwy’s formulation (in Chris Turner’s translation), a “critical constellation formed by a particular fragment of the past with a particular moment of the present.”
released December 4, 2020
Phonographic samples with electric guitar, resonator guitar, lap steel, and piano. Committed August–September 2020 in Skylight, Kentucky. Mixed by Zak Riles at Earthwave Studio, Shelbyville, Kentucky. Mastered by Carl Saff.
V: from “Rumenishe Doina” by Dave Tarras’ Orkester, Columbia 8220-F, recorded in New York City, April 1927.
VI: from Vladimir Heifetz’ introduction to “Sug Mir Du Schein Meidele (Tell me you pretty girl)” by Isa Kremer, Brunswick 40082, recorded in New York City, January 1924.
VII: from “Jak som išol prez lesh (As I walked through the forest)” by Slovenska Orkestra Michael Lapchaka, Victor 80576, recorded in Camden, New Jersey, February 1928.
VIII: from “Die Chasidim Forren Tsum Rebbin (The Chasidim Visit The Rabbi)” by Kandel’s Orchestra (drummer unidentified), Victor 68680, recorded in New York City, November 1924.
Nathan Salsburg is a guitarist, composer, archivist and writer living in Kentucky. He is a frequent collaborator of
songwriter-singer Joan Shelley, occasional guitar-duo partner of James Elkington, and has contributed to recordings by Bonnie "Prince" Billy, the Weather Station, and Jake Xerxes Fussell, among others. Salsburg is also curator of the digital Alan Lomax Archive....more