Richard Nunns and David Long are both legendary musicians in the NZ music scene. It’s a privilege and pleasure to work with both of them. Richard Nunns had been my mentor and co-player for some years already before he suggested we make this album together. David and I met for the first time in this collaboration and over the duration of this project we’ve developed a strong friendship and mutual artistic respect.
Richard Nunns has been an inspiration to countless artists across a range of disciplines around the world, but his influence on the cultural landscape of Aotearoa is enormous.
One simply can’t quantify the value of Richard’s contribution, not only to music and the arts in general, but also to our sense of identity as New Zealanders. Of course, he would dismiss such comments as overblown hokum, but anyone who has had the good fortune to work with or simply know Richard will attest to the truth of these words.
The ‘utterance’ recording proved to be Richard’s last. A few weeks later his illness compelled him to pack his wonderful collection of taonga pūoro away permanently, instruments that for decades were an extension of his body, his breathe, his heart, and his soul.
This album is therefore the culmination of a lifetime of passionate commitment to an artistic discipline on one hand, and deeply held beliefs and hope on the other – a philosophical, cultural, creative, and deeply personal journey that was in essence a selfless act of giving. One might even say that Richard didn’t choose taonga pūoro … taonga pūoro chose him.
The combined musical experience shared by Richard, Natalia Mann and David Long, enabled them to engage in a musical dialogue at a very high level, then to extend themselves further. Natalia puts it perfectly when she says, “While the recording was a physical challenge for Richard, he more than made up for it with the essential artistry and conception that has resonated throughout all of his work: the courage to walk into unknowing … and to hang out there.”
As David says, “beauty is not always easy to achieve with abstract music.” It is our very great pleasure to announce the forthcoming release of one of Rattle’s most beautiful albums.
Meeting for the first time through the recording of UTTERANCE, David Long & Natalia Mann discovered a seamless synergy in improvisation. Traversing wide frontier soundscapes, the two musicians weave new textures through their combined artisty.
June 2, 2017
Jeff Henderson compiles an exhibition of sonic writings by Richard Nunns. David Long & Natalia Mann perform UTTERANCE, with installation films.
@ Audio Foundation, Sub-Basement of the Parisian Tie Factory, 4 Poynton Terrace (Off Pitt St or behind St Kevins Arcade) Auckland Central audiofoundation.org.nz
David Long & Natalia Mann perform UTTERANCE, with installation films. Supported by Ariana Tikao & Alistair Fraser
@ Pyramid Club, 272 Taranaki Street, Wellington, New Zealand