Pierre Bastien orchestrates his meccano marionettes on Tinkle Twang ‘n
Tootle to form the charming imaginative ensemble that he’s been known
for since the late 80s.
Equal parts composer, inventor, mechanic, and performer - Bastien
translates his imagination into instruments and compositions that defy
any musical categories. Whether it’s preparing instruments like playing a
trumpet underwater or through a kazoo, using belt-driven motors and
mechanical components to perform cumbersome yet surprisingly musical
operations on traditional instruments and household items, or using a
fan to hit the strings of a kundi harp with flowing paper - Bastien’s
love for tone, rhythm, noise and harmony is poetically reflected across
his quite extensive oeuvre.
Playful and melancholic, the sound sculptures that Bastien invents and
plays with are partly inspired by the work of Raymond Roussel, a
visionary French author who at the turn of the 20th century wrote a
unique form of literature which inspired and guided artists from the
surrealist and pataphysical movement and was declared by Michel Foucault
as one of structuralism's founding fathers. On that note, the influence
of literature and syntax on Bastien’s work cuts all the way through to
the palindromes he uses for his track titles - which, much like his machines, infinitely loop.
True to it’s adorable title, Tinkle Twang ‘n Tootle is a music box of
unfolding whimsical structures, half broken rhythms, detuned harmonies,
and fantastical sound collages that evoke a childlike sense of wonder
and an urge to explore the spaces in between the sounds.