These two recordings provide a chance to hear Swiss-based improviser Jason Kahn in two sets of collaborations, both of which feature him improvising on analogue synthesizer with his fellow musicians.
Planes finds Kahn in Boston in live performance with the Massachusetts-based sound artist Asher, who is credited with recording and playback devices. Kahn’s slow analogue drones are thus combined with a series of field recordings manipulated and interspersed throughout the thirty-seven-minute performance. Children playing, birds singing, and the sounds of a deep reverberating chamber are among the sounds that emerge from among the layers of sound.

Kahn’s Swiss collaborators on Limmat bring a greater amount of texture to the proceedings, further facilitated by the album’s origins in a studio environment rather than in a live gathering. Günter Müller, on iPods and electronics, is a master of sonic detail, with each of his chosen sounds asserting a crisp identity in the unfolding milieu. They bounce nicely off the angular sine waves that Kahn coaxes out of his synthesizer. Percussionist Christian Wolfarth supplies an organic counterweight to the electronics, mainly focusing on his cymbals to draw forth complementary shimmers and drones. This performance is the more engaging of the two, especially when heard through headphones, which enables fuller appreciation of the intricacies of the interlocking sounds.