Rhythm is a universally understood element. The intuition to move in response to rhythm, or at least recognize the feeling, speaks to the relationship between rhythm and our bodies. It’s an intuitive language.
Intuition is also at work in creating rhythms. What combination of notes causes the deepest resonance? When does the connection to them feel strongest? Like dreams, the answers to these questions seem to be somewhere within us, as reflected by esoteric artist Jesse Bransford, whose work is featured throughout the packaging of Codex Intueri. In old Norse translation, ‘stave’ can be understood as ‘spelling’ in order to create meaning. Similarly, the repetitive notes of rhythm can seem to spell a kind of hidden meaning between our intuition and movement.
Codex Intueri was conceived and performed by Jon Mueller, using drums, percussion and gongs. The pieces were then arranged and mixed by James Plotkin, who reveals constructions of rhythms that imply distinct experiences. Also adding modular synthesizer on each piece, James’ overall approach to these recordings blurs the line between acoustic drumming and more formalized techno music.
The Stave Edition of Codex Intueri prominently features art from Bransford, who hand-constructed and painted each of this limited edition’s jackets. Based on Icelandic folk magic, his pieces within this project are similar to the work featured in A Book of Staves, a book of his spiritual aspirations expressed through art, published by FULGUR press in the UK.
About his work for the Codex Intueri Stave Edition, Bransford comments:
Icelandic Magic is tied to the land, to the rhythm of the land, and the cycles the seasons create. They are harsh rhythms, impossible to ignore. The magic of this place translates well to other places, and when you begin to pay attention to these tempos, our bodies answer in kind, and we begin to realize that we, our bodies, mimic these patterns, these rhythms.
Dreams are one interface of this language of rhythm, and the techniques for harnessing these energies are varied. These staves are one way. This music is another.
These pieces of original art surround two 10″ records of the Codex Intueri audio, hand cut by Michael Lawrence and hand engraved by Lauren Winton. The engravings are of Branford’s Dream Stave and Greater Dream Stave as seen in his original work within. A hand written insert includes details on the recording.
Codex Intueri was also released as a limited edition cassette (100 copies) and digitally via Bandcamp.