Transglobal & Magic Sounds
László Hortobágyi, the sound-magician from Budapest, transports us to a fascinating world of archaic musicality. This trained musicologist, organ-builder, electronics pioneer and master of many instruments — including sitar, tablas and a variety of keyboard instruments — became a musical globetrotter at a very early age. He draws the inspiration for his imaginary folk music from a rich wellspring of experience gathered on countless journeys throughout the Orient and India, and weaves a tapestry of sound with uncanny skill and boundless imagination out of the warp and weft of his apparently infinite collection of samples. His compositions roll back every conceivable geographic and temporal border to consolidate musical worlds and languages. Listening to his psycho-musical expeditions to imaginary continents conjures up images of unseen fantasy films. “My music is a musical-sociological fiction in the form of rituals and mysteries,” says László Hortobágyi. This magical cosmos of sound makes it possible to hear dialogues between the Indian sitar, the European cembalo and the throat singing of Tuva, or monks’ choirs of different cultures encountering each other with flute, gamelan and complex percussion. The result is what Hifi Vision termed a “highly charged and intoxicating rush of sound between gamelan and experimental electronics”, in which the listener is taken on “time travel into the world of the Dervishes. Monks’ choirs, Arab-Indian solo singing and electronically distorted voices reach the ears, bound to earth by the hypnotic beat of drum, bass and tabla — together with the powerful chords of a church organ or the trumpeting of an elephant. After twenty years of research, his psychedelic world music must surely be on the verge of a breakthrough,” according to Rolling Stone. For all the critics’ enthusiasm (and a cult-like following) his CDs have not yet achieved the widespread popularity they deserve. Network has now brought together the musical highlights from six different productions to create a portrait of this unique musical talent. Artist Franz Aumüller has specially created a series of virtual landscapes which form a continuous thematic link throughout the booklets.