DINOFLAGELLATE BLOOMS features eleven compositions composed, produced and performed by Manorexia aka JG Thirlwell. Begun in Berlin in 2005, and completed in 2011. The album was recorded at Thirlwell’s Self Immolation studios in Brooklyn, and the 5.1 mixes were made at Harvestworks Studio with Paul Geluso. The album follows the release of last year’s acclaimed Mesopelagic Waters on John Zorn’s Tzadik label, which was performed by Manorexia as a chamber ensemble.
Manorexia will be performing on October 2 with Portishead at an All Tomorrow’s Parties event in Asbury Park, NJ.
The album is available from www.foetus.org/
What is DINOFLAGELLATE BLOOMS?
The album kicks off with Cryogenics, featuring the album’s sole guest contributor, percussionist Kenny Wolleson. Hammered and plucked autoharp and piano strings weave with small percussion to suggest a delicate hypnotic ritual.
The second track, Anabiosis, was originally commissioned by the Bang On A Can People’s Commissioning fund in 2005. This is a bombastic fleshed-out symphonic version of the piece. We next encounter the haunting, slightly demented Ten Ton Shadow.
Krzystl (pronounced “Crystal”) was originally conceived as a four channel installation in the Tou Scene museum in Norway. It grew from some of JG’s desire to exploit some of the sounds and atmospheres he had created in some of his sound design work. It is a disturbing, ominous sonic portrait that builds to an terrifying crescendo.
A Plastic Island in the Pacific is a melancholic but intense meditation using distressed and distorted clouds of chords, dedicated to the huge deposit of garbage in the Pacific ocean which is the size of the state of Texas.
The Perfect Patsy is a suspenseful, brooding and compelling track full of mystery and pregnant tension. The interlude Hoarse Platitudes is a field recording made in Havana, Cuba on the occasion of Castro’s return to the city after a long illness. Bells and resonant chiming dominate Vika, which rests on a plaintive, haunting string pattern.
Kinaesthesia began life as a four channel installation piece accompanying Norwegian artist Anne Senstad’s color projections. The piece with JG’s accompaniment has shown in numerous museums around the world and the audio is reworked and released here for the first time. Its a transportative, evolving piece which invokes inner and outer space.
The final track, Struck, refers to the struck piano strings which form the initial basis of the song, which builds to an intense and jagged symphonic shockmare before releasing into an ominous and brooding coda whioch closes the album’s exhausting journey.
A dinoflagellate is a small plankton-like aquatic creature. “Dinoflagellate blooms” is the term for when the dinoflagellate create an algae that turns the surface of the sea red.
JG Thirlwell on Manorexia
Manorexia was conceived in the year 2000. I began working on the first album on Thanksgiving morning and released it in 2001. It was started as an electronic and sample based project where I wanted to explore a spatial quality not existent in my other work. I released two albums as Manorexia, Volvox Turbo and The Radiolarian Ooze, both on my label Ectopic Ents exclusively thru my website www.foetus.org.
I had wanted to rearrange some Manorexia compositions for string quartet with percussion for some time. Eventually I made the first live performance as Manorexia in Russia in 2006. Kenny Savelson at Bang On A Can proposed my going there for a performance at the same time as the Real Quiet trio of David Cossin, Felix Fan and Andy Russo. Real Quiet agreed to be the core of Manorexia for the Russian dates and we augmented the lineup with two violinists and a violist in Moscow. I rearranged some of the Manorexia material to be played by string quartet, piano, percussion and laptop with Ted Hearne.
I have since formed separate Manorexia ensembles in NYC and London. Manorexia has played at All Tomorrow’s Parties, The Whitney Museum, Bang On A Can marathon, Brainwaves Festival and several times at The Stone NYC. In 2010 I released an album of the chamber arrangements from the first two albums on Tzadik , entitled The Mesopelagic Waters.
The latest Manorexia album, entitled Dinoflagellate Blooms, is back to being performed solely by myself, and is mixed in both stereo and 5.1 surround.
Manorexia will be performing in October with Portishead at an All Tomorrow’s Parties event in Asbury Park, NJ.
JG Thirlwell is currently scoring the film The Blue Eyes, a supernatural thriller directed by Eva Aridjis. He is also working on his third string quartet for Kronos Quartet. Later in the year he will begin scoring the fifth season of the hit Adult Swim / Cartoon Network series The Venture Bros.