This release by the German sound artist Kaja Günak draws on the recent wave of interest in the "subgenres" of modern composition. In the past two decades there has been a growing interest in the sonic zones between physical and electronic elements – the physical space, the surfaces, the textures. In a sense the sound of Günak’s work has the quality of sound art, but it is not the work of art, but the articulation of a very particular style of sound art, which is a changeable art, and in which the composer can revise and re-envision what goes on inside the sound.
This is a winning work. For me, it corresponds to the quality of interest in the sonic space. Günak is interested in the dynamics of sound, in the interaction of a sound with its environment, and is not satisfied with the latter. Her approach is not an imitation of the work of a composer but a study of how the sound is produced, in the space, in the space where the sound takes place. It is a study of the relationship between the sound of guitar and the space where the music is performed. It is an interesting study, but it is not art – it’s an empirical study.
By the beginning of the work, the tension between the recording and the space is high, and she projects a subtle sound. But gradually, as a process, it decreases and the space and the sounds become more and more spacious. This is the beginning of a larger movement. But a cautious approach is applied, and it works very well. The fourth half is the most intense part of the work. The guitar is almost a solitary instrument and Günak draws the listener to it. It is the time when the music grows quiet, grows a little bit of space, and then grows again. This is a very powerful and full-sounding work.