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Review of Music for Found Objects

Ingenious jazz percussionist Jesse Stewart has performed his astounding “Found Objects” set in countless venues near his hometown of Guelph, ON but this is his first attempt to make a record around them. The result is tasteful and organic, an album of unadorned acoustic sounds produced by varied objects when struck by Stewart.

The record is organised in three successive sections, based around the elemental themes of water, metal and stone. Anyone who’s done some dishes can relate to “Pockets,” which consists of Stewart manipulating the sounds of salad bowls floating in engineer Lewis Melville’s bath tub. “Different Strokes” possesses timbres many would associate with stringed instrumentation or digital manipulation but Stewart achieves them simply by exploring the sonic capabilities of canoe paddles. “Sliding Music” is a mesmerising approximation of building bells, which Stewart creates with a mallet and a 50-inch length of galvanised steel sliding through his fingers. Marble tables and air pockets combine for “Shell Game,” which borders upon the discovery of some new kind of vocabulary. Stewart’s gifts stem from his visionary curiosity and his willingness to expand upon the accidental clunks humans create with all of their stuff. Coupled with his detailed anecdotal liner notes, Music for Found Objects is an endlessly fascinating exploration of sound. (Record Collection/Warner)

Reviewed by Vish Khanna