Perpetuum Impromptu

by Raoul van Herpen

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    Art-work made by Raoul van Herpen.
    Art-work editing for publishing by Ruben van Herpen

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Urelel 03:11
Nnyl 05:15
Perpetuum 07:34
Otakan 05:11
Eveil 02:26
Htes 05:13
Kuonnaj 04:15
Ekme 03:22
Ile 06:24
Eyiribab 06:19
Impromptu 08:11


Perpetuum Impromptu

This album is filled with feedback signals, strange instruments, "normal" instruments, solo's, duos and trios. Finding beauty and wonder in timbre, tone and, textures that will never stop in an ongoing improvisation, a "Perpetuum Impromptu."

I explore some new territories. I use electronic's that fascinates me, like (modular) synth, tape recorders, and the NIM.
It started with getting to know about this instrument called "No Input Mixer" (NIM). This is a mixing board where you feed the output back into an input, creating a feedback signal which you can manipulate and play with. It is very sensitive and comes with heavy dynamic's, frequencies and gain. I simply love the sound. Exploring with noise, timbre, rhythm, and tones on this "instrument" is incredible. Being a piano player, I was wondering what would happen when I would simultaneously improvise on the piano or synthesizer in a strange kind of duo with myself.

A similar thing happened with improvising alongside my modular synth. On the pieces "Perpetuum" and "Impromptu," I made a so-called "Krell-Patch" (a patch originally invented by Todd Barton). Here also I play with feedback signals but in a very different way and creating ever-changing tones and timbres. Compared to the NIM, the instrument is moving almost entirely autonomous. Until I pull the plug it'll keep playing forever, so it's is like an "ongoing improvisation," hence the album title. Because two voices are improvising in the modular and me on the piano, you can say it is a trio improvisation.

Then there is Tape. Tape in itself is a lovely medium with a beautiful sound and liveliness. I used my Arp mono-synth to play alongside the tape-recorders, and again there's also a feedback signal from the tape to itself. Again creating an ever-changing textural improvisation in a duo endeavor with myself letting the tape recorder do its thing and me playing the synth.

On the piece Kuonnaj there's a different kind of duo going on in the sense of an actual duo with another person than me. I asked Tobias Kerkhoven to play and be creative. He pulled out his own electronics and his guitar against my NIM. Doing an excellent job playing with sound design, creating a beautiful ambiance, and having a very original take on this.

As said at the beginning, an album filled with feedback signals, strange instruments, "normal" instruments, solo's, duos and trios. Ongoing improvising with tone, timbre, textures that will never stop it is a true "Perpetuum Impromptu."

Enjoy listening!


released July 26, 2018

All Music and performance by Raoul van Herpen
Except for "Kuonnaj," featuring Tobias Kerkhoven

Raoul van Herpen - Piano, Wurlitzer Piano, No Input Mixer, (Modular)Synthesizers and Tape-recorders

Tobias Kerkhoven - Guitar, Electronics

Mixed by Raoul van Herpen

Mastered by Nathan Moody at Obsidian Sound


all rights reserved



Raoul van Herpen Utrecht, Netherlands

Raoul loves to improvise on his (Wurlitzer) piano and miscellaneous electronic devices. He is an electroacoustic music composer. Draws heavily towards 20th and 21st-century composing and improvisation techniques like twelve-tone, code and the use of silence. Experiments with noise, electronics, modular synths, tape recorders, piano, etc. are what his work is all about. ... more

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