With Less Is More we see Orphax return with his 4th live album for Moving Furniture Records. It is a live album recorded at the exhibition Less Is More at Amsterdam art gallery Factor IJ.
Less Is More is released as CD mastered by Jos Smolders in artwork with work Wladimir Zwaagstra.
In August 2021 Moving Furniture Records curated a music program accompanying the minimal art exhibition ‘Less is More’, presented by Polderlicht at Factor-IJ, Amsterdam.
On this occasion the Orphax performance was recorded live. This CD features the full set – no edits, no cuts.
This live set merges Orphax’s fascination for minimalist art and his idiosyncratic take on drone music, offering warm and organic atmospheres in which the listener drifts away, losing not only senses of time and space, but – maybe, too – oneself.
Officially this CD is the first release of 2022 for both Orphax and the label he operates, Moving Furniture Records. I must say that I think ‘Less Is More’ is not a great title. If anything, it should be the slogan for all of the Orphax works. Sietse van Erve, the man behind Orphax, works within the field of drone music, exploring long-form electronic sounds for a lengthy amount of time. That’s what he has done for several years now. In August of this year, Van Erve curated a music program
in Amsterdam, and he played a concert. That is what we have on ‘Less Is More’. There are no edits, no cuts, just the complete live recording, almost forty minutes long. The piece starts gently, with an organ-like sound, and slowly the colours change. Different filters or sound effects create such an effect, becoming a bit psychedelic. At this point, fifteen minutes in, I thought if Orphax for once decided to stick to a single drone for the entire length. He doesn’t. Shortly after that, the tone changes again and slowly return to a less full spectrum. From there on, it becomes a single drone and then builds up again until, at thirty minutes, there is even a bit of noise in a complete overdose area, ending in the final few minutes in standard drone terrain. All of this one could quickly call solid Orphax territory. A fine work, and an Orphax fan such I am, is an indispensable item. However, I wonder about this: had the past two years not been so tiring when playing live concerts and
Orphax played more shows, would this one be on CD? Knowing Orphax to prepare these concerts as worked out compositions, I wondered why not present the studio version of ‘Less Is More’? Maybe ‘Less Is More’ is also a statement, a call to return to a normal concert situation. (FdW)
‘Less is More’, dat volgende maand verschijnt, is ook een live-set. Orphax gaf in augustus van dit jaar een concert tijdens de minimal art tentoonstelling ‘Less is More’, georganiseerd door Polderlicht in Factor-IJ, Amsterdam. De complete opnames zijn nog niet beschikbaar, maar een ruim zeven minuten durende voorbeschouwing geeft een aardige eerste inkijk. Met name omdat Orphax nogal consistent is in zijn muzikale uitingen. Want ook hier zie ik de klankwolken weer aan mij voorbij trekken, ook hier lijkt de tijd weer stil te staan. Tegelijkertijd laat deze korte vooruitblik al horen dat er in deze set meer gebeurt dan op de twee andere albums. De drone bezit hier een zekere gelaagdheid, ik verheug me nu al op de complete opnames.
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Amsterdam based musician and trained drummer Sietse van Erve (Orphax) was introduced to electronic music in the early nineties. After playing around with tracker software for a couple of years, he eventually recorded his first more serious attempts of music with beats and melodies in 1998, though soon lost interest in both these.
He started researching new sounds and new ways of working – always with an organic touch, often incorporating sounds that would be regarded by others as errors or mistakes. Considering life isn’t without errors either. During this search, he found his way into drone and microtonal music. As a result in his most recent work, time and spatiality become more important factors. The goal of the music is for the listener to lose the sense of time and place.
Live this is combined with room for improvisation. This way of working results often in an organic form of drone and minimal music.
He has released over 50 releases, as Download, CD-R, Tapes, CD’s and Vinyl, on various labels, as well as self-released online since he started working on music. This includes collaborations with Machinefabriek and Martijn Comes. Furthermore, he contributed to many remix projects including work for Kenneth Kirschner, Sontag Shogun, Martijn Comes, TVO and Chris Dooks among others.
In the past, he has shared the stage with various musicians including Martijn Comes, Jos Smolders, Frans de Waard (Modelbau), Zeno van den Broek, TVO, BJ Nilsen, Philip Jeck, Yann Novak, Sarah Davachi and Scanner.
Besides making music, Sietse van Erve runs Moving Furniture Records and has curated concerts at home, at Amsterdam institute STEIM, De Ruimte, OCCII and more.