Label: Holidays Records
**Gosh, this is just something else, absolutely stunning and musically unique** Henning Christiansen was an incongruous mirror for the paradoxes of 20th century creative practice. He gave his context what it demanded - visionary and singular work, but was so radical that almost no one knew what to do with him, forcing him into the position of an outsider. Of all the composers working within the cradle of Fluxus, his work falls among the closest to its primary intent, destroying hierarchy, orthodoxy, and categorization - dissembling long cemented ideas about what music was understood to be - a truth, crystallized through the purity of ideas, which threads its way across the two releases in our hands.
Schafe statt Geigen (Sheep instead of Violins) and “Verena” Vogelzymphon (Bird Symphony) were composed in 1988 and 1990, first appearing as a tiny CD gallery edition issued by Bernd Klüser. Both works, each occupying a single of this LP edition, extend from one of Christiansen’s long standing conceptual strategies - deploying recordings of animals as stand-ins for musical instruments, cows (with dogs) and birds respectively. While each work allows these source to take the natural lead, at times masquerading as field recordings, both feature subtle tonal and electronic interventions by the composer, creating strange and brilliant compositions which shift the terms and subjects of music as they were long understood. Brilliant and beautiful challenges to the ear and mind, laying out of reach for decades, this stunning LP, issued in a limited edition of 500 copies, comes with a 20-page photographic booklet. Essential for any fan of avant-garde practice, artist music, and experimental sound. Accompanied by a twenty page booklet featuring drawings and texts by Henning Christiansen, as well as pictures by René Block. Translation from German by Michael Muennich. The sound installation Schafe statt Geigen is owned by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Roskilde, Denmark. "Verena" Vogelzymphon op. 194 (1990) is dedicated to Verena and Bernd Klüser on the occasion of their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary. Text by Robert Musil: Nachlass zu Lebzeiten (Posthumous Papers of a Living Author, 1936). Lacquer cut at SST, Frankfurt am Main. Cover artwork by Henning Christiansen, 1985.