Kangding Ray . Pruitt Igoe
Pruitt Igoe is a 4 track E.P on which both Alva Noto and Ben Frost have been invited by Kangding Ray to produce sonic variations on a contemporary architectural myth.
The EP’s title Pruitt Igoe is taken from a gigantic social housing project, completed in 1955 in the U.S. City of St Louis, Missouri, and often regarded as a symbol of the modernist architecture failure. Designed according to the principles of modernism, and by the same architect who would later build the World Trade Center, the project saw a disastrous and violent decline after only a few years, plagued with vandalism and massive criminality, leading to its complete destruction from 1972 onwards. Footage of its demolition are visibly featured in the 1983 movie “Koyaanisqatsi”, scored by Phillip Glass.
Pruitt Igoe is more than a post-modern icon, it represents an ancestral movement of hope and disillusion, of perfectly planned models and evaporated dreams. It serves as a judicious metaphor for our era, where the feeling of imbalance and doubt has replaced the certainity of eternal progress and endless economical growth.
This movement is reflected by the two sides of the record: on the A side, the original track and its remodel by Alva Noto, both represent the planning and construction phase, based on a clear structure and a hypnotic loop of women chanting in the streets of a small town in North India. On the B-side, Ben Frost and Kangding Ray undertake the demolition process - slicing beats, destroying structures and emphasising the beauty of collapse.