A decade since the release of their debut album Dalia on Sagnoplasmo, the polish duo Piętnastka (Piotr Kurek and Hubert Zemler) have returned with another extraordinary record, this time on Warsaw label, Mondoj. In Kambium they build on the foundations laid in their previous work, dreaming of a world where the only rule seems to be the exhalation of rhythm, whether built up using electro-acoustic instruments, analogue synthesis or foggy sounds that seem to emerge from a flotation tank.
It might feel like a long while since their debut release, but Kurek and Zemler have both been more or less continuously engaged in projects where adventure has been the key motif. Of particular interest is Kurek’s A Sacrifice Shall Be Made / All The Wicked Scenes - also on Mondoj - an ample demonstration of his apparently instinctive creative effervescence. Kurek built the record’s distinctive sound from a mix of traditional Japanese rhythms drawn from his own collection brought together to make a new polymorphic entity, a wild refuge where anything could happen.
With its disconcerting textures, strange tones and unique viscerality, Kambium is an album that washes its wounds in mystery and danger. Kurek and Zembler navigate the frontiers of the organic and the synthetic, projecting shapes and rhythms that evoke a cat leaping and swiping in the middle of the night. Like the impulse to look for half-imagined ghosts under your bed, Piętnastka’s new record will lead you on a new journey with each listen, opening up a small tear in the space-time continuum in some unlit corner of your room.