All music by Koboku Senju
Recorded at Dokkhuset scene, Trondheim, November 15th 2008 by Morten Brekke Stensland, except track 5, recorded at Kampen Bistro, Oslo, November 2nd 2008 by Thomas Hukkelberg
Mixed and mastered by Toshimaru Nakamura
Produced by Koboku Senju
Cover design and artwork by Jonas Howden Sjøvaag
Before I start listening to Selektiv hogst, I visit my parents in the south of Norway. They have experienced heavy snowfall this winter, and even after a week of warm weather, the snow is still covering everything – the piles are just slowly shrinking. I don’t really understand until my mother shows me a picture of their house from the week before. On the picture, the snow reaches high above the windows on the ground floor. Now, it’s just knee high. It hasn’t been melting, my father says, it’s just become more compact.
Later, when I sit down to listen to this album, I can’t help thinking about the snow compressing, becoming warm and heavy, retracting into itself, like a slow, punctured balloon. I hear instruments breathing together at the beginning of “Nedvekst”, the sound of granular material. Sometimes, I feel safe inside the sound of snow, other times I swear I hear ice cracking.
The titles of Selektiv hogst are referring to textures of wood and fur, not snow. Its vocabulary comes from the world of growth and decay, peace and fear in the natural world. When I put the titles together, I think of a wandering animal in a forest both threatening and beautiful. And so after listening to the album, I wander through the streets of the small, southern town like the animal of Selektiv hogst – watching my step, aware of invisible dangers, perhaps the heavy, grainy breaths through a tuba on “Fanget under giftig bark”. Around me, blocks of ice fall from rooftops onto the street, breaking on the asphalt, leaving diamond trails.
Back home, the snow disappearing into sounds and colours. Water drips from ice taps everywhere. Houses and trees appear from their snowy shells. In a garden, I see a pile of rust-coloured, rotten apples. I am constantly reminded of the process of rot and decay – materials softening, warming up, melting and giving life. All of a sudden I am no longer inside snow when I listen to Selektiv hogst, but inside the wood of a tree trunk. I think to myself that the ensemble Koboku Senj? (Varianter av døde trær) has given sound to the textures of life and death: not just abstract, bodiless ideas, but tree rings.