Each artist was given access to the range of recordings from sound material collected and constructed for the original Freeform album Audiotourism (QS107).

 Disc one: Reinterpretations
  1/  Traffic Echoes - Jan Jelinek               (Pyke)                        4.57
  2/  Chin haouss tin pak - Tal                  (Pyke)                        4.02
  3/  We made you, we can destroy you - Shudo    (Pyke)                        5.50
  4/  Buddhistgroovemaster - Mash’ta             (Pyke)                        5.18
  5/  Lost world - Bill Laswell                  (Pyke)                        7.19
  6/  Audiotourist - Atom                        (Pyke)                        4.01
  7/  A.T reform - Colongib & Octopus Inc.       (Pyke)                        3.28
  8/  A.T. - Autechre                            (Pyke)                        7.39
 Disc two: Sources
  1/  Scene one                                  (Pyke)                        4.19
  2/  Scene two                                  (Pyke)                        1.47
  3/  Scene three                                (Pyke)                        5.46
  4/  Scene four                                 (Pyke)                        4.25
  5/  Scene five                                 (Pyke)                        2.56
  6/  Scene six                                  (Pyke)                        5.30

          Original music collected, written and produced by Simon Pyke from June 5, 2000 -
            May 2001
          All sources were collected, recorded and arranged by Simon Pyke

          2002 - Quartermass (Belgium), QS117 LP (Vinyl)
          2002 - Quartermass (Belgium), QS117 (2CD)
Note: The second CD contains a bonus CD-Rom track.
Note: The vinyl version only contains the remixed tracks.


After six albums and nearly ten years, Simon Pike remains largely unknown, and these two records are unlikely to very much alter this trend. With sonic configurations approaching surgical precision, Freeform has however become something of a legend on the electronic scene, alongside Autechre and Coil. Pike’s releases, flirting in turn with ambient, electronica, techno, dub and industrial have proven to be enduring records. His vision of abstraction has attracted a good few labels, from Worm Interface, who released his two first LPs, to Warp, Skam, Leaf and, more recently, Sub Rosa and their sub-label Quatermass. This apparent dispersion, although likely to have something to do with Freeform not managing to establish himself more firmly, has most definitely allowed him to experiment more freely with sound.

Resulting of two months spent recording street noises, instruments (dan bau, tam thap luc, co’ng or po) and environmental sounds in the Yunnan province, in the South West of China and in Vietnam, Audio-Tourism is not a documentary on traditional oriental music by any stretch of the imagination. Built around these sources, sampled, processed and re-conceptualized, this album is above all the work of an accomplished musician. All beat structures are based on actual percussions, mixed with drum machines to form complex combinations on which Pike applies textured sound combinations, expanding on the sonorities collected. As the man assembles without distinction samples from different areas, each track feeds on combined atmospheres, creating intricate impressionist patchworks of intense beauty.

For the second segment of this project, Simon Pike asked a handful of artists, including Jan Jelinek, Tal, Bill Laswell, Atom™ and Autechre, to work from his material and same sound sources, giving them total freedom of interpretation. More than a remix album, Audio-Tourism Reinterpretations takes the original concept to new heights as each artist give their own vision of the work and reading of the resources available. If the versions by Tal or Bill Laswell do simply with juxtaposing found sounds and electronic treatments, pretty much conserving the elements in their original form, Jan Jelinek’s, Shudo’s or Mash’ta’s processing is more acute, perfectly integrating them into their own soundscapes by fervently deconstructing them. Rather unsurprisingly, the most challenging and detached input comes from Autechre. With a sound design equaling their most intricate and abstract work, the Manchester duo submit a minimalist piece of structural glitch and distorted drones.

This release comes with an additional CD featuring almost thirty minutes of original sound sources. More than a sonic photo album, this gives an interesting insight on the found sounds used on both albums.

The Audio-Tourism collection amazes by its sonic qualities, as Simon Pike avoids the pit falls of a techno-world album by not over-loading his compositions with sound sources, creating intense soundscapes cleverly put together and processed. Audio-Tourism Reinterpretations presents a different angle on the project, with all the artists involved expanding on Pike’s mini-disc recordings and original work, bringing new elements and personalities to the music. If both album work perfectly on their own, the combined listening experience is even more fascinating.

Audio-Tourism: Vietnam & China: 4.5/5 / Reinterpretations: 4/5

courtesy of the Milf Factory website