**Edition of 200. Triangular cover**
While often laying unobserved below a landscape of the seemingly unfamiliar, experimental music is the imagining of the future, embedded in a quest for fundamental truth. It is a music that attempts to speak of who we are, fueled by curiosity and formed into creative languages that seek new relationships to meaning and communication through organizations of sound. New Mexico based performer, improvisor, composer, and sound artist Raven Chacon’s latest LP, An Anthology of Chants Operations, the second outing from Ouidah - a new imprint in the Blume Editions family, dedicated to ambitious artists working in often overlooked geographies - is a shimmering window into the rigour, hope, and beauty of these pursuits; a body of recordings drawn from across the last decade of his output, that weaves the elemental and topical into startling abstract forms.
Raised in Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation, Arizona, and a student of James Tenney, Morton Subotnick, Michael Pisaro and Wadada Leo Smith at CalArts, for the last 20 years Raven Chacon has bridged the creative realms of chamber music, noise, site specific installation, and performance, building a body of singular solo efforts, as well as critically heralded collaborative works within the collective Postcommodity.
Deeply introspective, Chacon’s work rests at the root meaning and intention of experimental practice. It is the outcome of an action that, at its inception, responds to a question for which the answer is unknown. In his hands, sound is a raw, democratic material, with a near infinite number of possibilities and sources - sometimes found and encountered, others self-generated - reformed into an image that refract the notions of humanity and being outside of themselves.
An Anthology of Chants Operations comprises a body of 9 recordings created by Chacon between 2010 and 2020, capturing live performance, installation, and composition. Offering an expansive cross-section of the cohesive diversity that defines his practice, each is a free-standing encounter, drawing on the artist’s deep sense of curiosity about the meaning that develops through a relation to history, happening, place, and environment.
Singing Toward the Wind Now / Singing Toward the Sun Now is a work that documents an installation staged at Canyon de Chelly National Monument in Chinle, Arizona in 2012, for which Chacon created 4 metal sculptures that function as musical instruments - 2 wind harps and 2 solar-powered oscillators - played by the natural elements. Encountered here as a tapestry of drone, subtle electronic beating, and environmental sound, the work forms part of a multidimensional image, alluding to their unseen forms and countless experiences and phenomena, across the millennia, of the land where it was staged.