Spectropol Records’ AXE

Spectropol Records’ AXE, a compilation of various artists exploring the more esoteric aspects of guitar composition, serves to remind that music can be more than “music.”

For over four centuries Western tonal music was built around structures that were fundamentally narrative and emotional; then the industrial age, Wagner, and Thaddeus Cahill came along and soon the Avant-Garde was born.

Avant-Garde came into existence as the alienation, disorientation and neurosis experienced by artists in the early stages of the industrial nineteenth-century world found less conventional expressions. For Wagner, this meant traditional tonal centers could be disposed of altogether. By 1906, Cahill’s invention of the first electronic instrument provided another tipping point. In 1907, Italian composer Ferruccio Busoni’s publication, Sketch of a New Aesthetic of Music, predicted the future use of dissonant and “electrified” sound and noise would heavily influence 20th century music.

For the artists found in AXE, this short history lesson provides a direct link to this loss of “identity” wherein they explore, reflected in the loss of traditional tonal centers which liberates their compositions from the need to produce purpose. Compositions and notes become less important than the instrument that produce the sound, which, in a paradoxical twist allows the artist to gain more freedom as the art itself loses its “meaning”.

On AXE, the various Avant-Garde artists understand that they no longer need to create a narrative and choose simply to explore a sound-scape aesthetic in sculpting their un-tethered identity, reflected in looser and looser structures.