A long time ago, perhaps simultaneous to now, geographic and navigational trajectories of Aboriginal Australian trade and ceremony were captured in songlines, memory devices that embed knowledge and landscape into chanted song cycles. Chyme, the collaboration between Chicago-based vocal improviser and composer Carol Genetti and visual artist Gwyneth Zeleny Anderson turns inwards, tracing audio compositions for voice, corrugated tubing, and piano housing into screen-printed “listening scores” of sensory depths internal.
In the making since 2016, Chyme culminates in a limited-edition pouch that holds and activates a measured balance between outer and inner listening. While Anderson’s sensations towards Genetti’s expressive character are rendered as scores, the scores capture music and unfold like maps of attention and its periphery.
Genetti’s vocal craft in recording is as definite and momentous as her shattering live performances. Heard for the first time unaccompanied by another musician since 2002’s Grain and exhibiting a select palette of her vast range, Genetti’s voice outlines and crevices like scribbly gum, pressing narrowly alone and ringing in layers bewilderingly. Salient accompaniments include a filtering corrugated tube (the same heard in Olivia Block’s 1999 classic Pure Gaze) that sonically reinforces a journey into and out-of, and editing techniques that mimic the vocal’s dexterity into an embossing.
Anderson’s scores invite one’s own listening awareness, participation, and self-sensing in imagination of another. They pose a self-diagnostic that prompts the weighing of answers, their bordering absorption, and the recognition of their relative position in timelines. All the while Chyme leads the ears, the eyes, and the fingers across shifted impressions and sudden conjunctions that make welcome.
The audio and score correspond to the voices of each artist, beacons for a dynamic, triangulated listening participation. Witnessing representations of a visceral process in pieces, insinuating the digestion of oneself and other, double-sided, is Chyme.
Take it out, turn it up, go inside, and touch the edge of the paper.
A true collectors’ item, available via suppedaneum.com