"Five petri dishes of electronics in cyclical stasis, produced during the first lockdown in Barcelona, Spring 2020. Most of the movement here occurs on the micro level, as synthesisers ping against eachother or chicane between steady pulses. Polymetric junctures are produced as each element adheres to its own mode of time; individual instruments repeat indefinitely, yet due to the metric misalignment the whole is always changing, bulging on one side then the other, held in a sort of respiratory standby. What can we deduce from these experiments? The absence of onward movement feels like a prompt to simply observe without judgement – to suspend the scientific impulse to understand. Perhaps these closed loops operate on a bespoke internal logic that we wouldn’t comprehend anyway.
At times the record feels like a glacial cast of minimal techno, particularly on 11-minute closer “Exciting Vertebrate”, with pointillist harmonies splashed between the sweep of a robotic searchlight. Both “Mirror Light” and the title track centre on juddering bass pulses – the former accompanied by the jousting of plastic straws, the latter featuring what resembles a wand scraped across a large metal spring. “Immortality For All Birds” is the record’s beautiful anomaly, like looped duet for feedback and cuckoo clock, receding and approaching as if traversing the spectrum of dream fidelity. And perhaps our relationship with dreams offer a solid precedent for Transactions In Time – earthly chronology is suspended, and we’re brought into something strange and unfathomable, yet internally coherent and perfect somehow."
“Greek sound artist Daphne X’s latest tape The Plumb Sutra mines the power of cycles and loops for nearly unlimited rewards. In each track, she finds some figure to repeat—a drum beat, a piano chord, an echoing synth tone—then douses it in echoes, textures, and other sonic accents. The result is music you can zone out to—just close your eyes while “Irimia’s Bones Crackle” casts ghostly rumbles—but that’s also as urgent and energizing as a treadmill workout. The Plumb Sutra’s peak is the nine-minute “Halo Dragon,” a stomping beat adorned with whines, whispers, and the hypnotic massage of Daphne X’s own voice.”
Marc Masters: The Best Experimental Music on Bandcamp: November 2021
This is an album with the classical sense of a photo album but instead of pages you will find tracks and instead of photographs you will find sounds. Friends, moments, places, conversations, dreams and memories are all there, lingering for a moment online and on tape. Inspired by Rebecka Englund’s and Johanna Ribbe’s photo diaries and the films of Agnes Varda.
“Water, or more specifically its collision with different surfaces, is the focus of Daphne X’s Água Viva. The Barcelona-based Greek sound artist presents four recordings of the liquid hitting polyester, metal and skin. Like all the best ideas this is a relatively simple one, but the decision to commit these events to tape pushes you to pay attention in new ways. Daphne X (aka Daphne Xanthopoulou’s) approach to field recording is the audio equivalent of a scientific illustrator not necessarily striving for photorealism, but exaggerating salient features. At times the recordings have been affected subtly, sounds looped or frequencies bolstered, affording more space and amplification to certain events. At others, the mics have been expertly placed to let incidental information and hints of location and situation creep in and take centre stage. Listening to the drops and splashes ends up strangely addictive. I find my brain attempting to map the time and space in which the recordings took place, as every eerie echo and subtle resonance is rendered as a question with no clear answer.”
Daryl Worthington, Spool's Out, The Quietus , Oct 2020
“Barcelona-based sound artist Daphne Xanthopoulou finds beauty not only in the mundane sounds of our everyday lives, footsteps and chimes and ringing telephones captured with wildly varying fidelity, but also in the intense, noisy glitch-scapes she coaxes from extensive processing of those recordings, presenting two dimensions of reality simultaneously.”
The disruption of the stimulus leads to the disorganization of the senses and the disorganization of the senses is beneficial because it creates new realities.
With this principle as a compositional technique, I started to apply cutting-up techniques on spoken word and field recordings, towards an increasingly microscopic level.
As I progressed, I realized that by separating these small particles, setting them in motion and shaping their experience, I set the conditions of a natural field where these sounds would sound from the beginning in the form that I gave them.
Through this material mutation and de/re-organization of the initial episode, a new environment with different natural laws and a new body that could inhabit it started to emerge.
When this environment would reach its ultimate state, it would be called: Jaguar 100%. The titles of the pieces derive from the works of Silvia Federici, Jane Bennett, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, the Ccru.