Durch Die Blumen – A Review by Peter Marra

Like a bullet through a mirror, Fork Burke’s new CD “Durch die Blumen” dazzles with shards of glimmering beauty and pain. This project is composed of 13 pieces. recorded one per month over a period of 13 months which results in a sense of growth over time. The synthesis of Fork’s words with the musical output of each musician results in a collaboration of startling synergy with underlying tones of sex and violence. The phrase “Durch die Blumen” as Fork describes in the liner notes is a touchstone for the project as she searches for new ways to communicate. There is a sense of randomness, which causes the listener a bit of uneasiness as we take the journey with the artists. Together the words and music result in a new form of communication that becomes an enlightening experience resulting in little epiphanies along the way. Each piece makes one think and dream and fantasize. One is reminded of smoky poetry readings in a loft in NYC during the fifties – ambient noise is also captured in each recording: paper shuffling and pages turning, musicians setting up their instruments, feedback used creatively that recalls the early experiments of Angus MacLise. Each track has it’s own merits and contributes to the whole piece, but some that are special to me include: “Prayer”  a portrait of self-realization and loss; “Strip the Bed, Sell the Sheets,”  featuring the poet’s voice intoning in one ear of the listener and Hari Köchli’s voice in the other resulting in a pleasant disorientation; and “Loss and Laughter,” a bittersweet essay.
Fork succeeds admirably in what she had stated as her goal: ” to be direct and disrupt and still maintain the illusion of giving.” Take a startling and poignant journey with Fork’s words, her voice at first sensual, then daring and confrontational. A brilliant accomplishment! 

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