After his Bowie string quartet tribute with Amanda Palmer, LA-based composer Jherek Bischoff releases his fourth solo album on Leeds label Leaf, funded via Kickstarter. Much like Pauline Oliveros and her Deep Listening Band before him, Bischoff took inspiration from exploring the acoustics of an empty underground water tank. Fascinated by the space’s extremely long reverb time of 45 seconds, Bischoff improvised in the tank with an acoustic guitar and his voice. Cistern’s title track is based on the result, arranged for a chamber ensemble.
The strings and woodwind instruments flow into each other, its lingering notes creating suspenseful diminished chords. The same way in which recording in the tank forced Bischoff to slow down – even clearing his throat would sound for almost another minute, the fluid arrangements of the album have decelerating effects. The soft pizzicato of ‘Closer to Closure’ is contrasted by the dissonance of ’The Wolf’: they stand amidst a sea of glistening orchestral sound, Bischoff's personal sonic reference to his childhood growing up on a sailing boat.