Callum Mintzis

Once Again

Release Notes

Date: March 1st, 2024
Co-Produced By: Tilman Robinson
Performed By: The Penny Quartet
Mastered By: Lachlan Carrick
Artwork By: Mietta Mintzis

Buy on Bandcamp

As I mature and fine-tune my musical journey, I seem to gravitate more and more towards the contemporary classical genre. Why is that, and do you feel the same? I think, for me, it’s all about the connection. I want to feel emotion expressed from the composer’s soul through instruments attached to human hands. They feel like an extension of articulations flowing into sound. I also think that electronic music has that capability as well [I’ve recently acquired the Osmose from Expressive E, and let me tell you – it’s entirely something else]. And then, there is, of course, the blend of both where certain frequencies [especially the low end] can’t be generated entirely by organic means. Or when dense atmospheres and textures cloud the landscape with a gorgeous dew. This is how I feel about the latest album from the Melbourne-based composer Callum Mintzis, who first appeared on these pages a few years ago when I premiered his collaboration with Pat Jaffe in the video for V. Murmur. Mintzis is also collaborating with Tilman Robinson, who co-produced this latest album [and yes, I hear a bit of his conjuring touch]. The album is titled And the Wind was my Dear Friend, Once Again, and across its seven pieces, Mintzis explores the mysteries of life through many philosophical questions posed alongside the release, but it is the music itself that will make you reach deep inside your own existence for the answers you will find.

I’ve got a long quote from Callum, which I decided to publish in its entirety:

We find ourselves in a strange world, a culture which seems so dislocated from itself that it has forgotten its values, pushing further into the abstract and away from what is here. The pursuit of technology, novelty, and stimulation appear symptomatic of a yearning for something which is absent: a closeness to oneself and, consequently, a closeness to others. Hundreds of years of so-called advancement have culminated in a place which has forgotten the value of deeply knowing oneself. This disassociation has implications as far-reaching as the climate crisis, polarization and division, a mistrust of emotion, narrow conceptions of self, and a profound confusion about the nature of well-being. We are lost. We see this in the blatant mistreatment of nature, disrespect for the indigenous peoples of this world, addiction to stimulation, a refusal to look at oneself, a fear of the ‘other’, and a need to control what is unknown. This situation fills me with great sorrow and has become the incentive for all the work that I do. As Andrei Tarkovsky saw it, art has the potential to pierce through the intellect and move the soul. He saw it as a means to explore the profound aspects of human experience, to contemplate the mysteries of life, and confront the fundamental questions about our purpose and place in the world. If we are to find ourselves once again, we must feel deeply.

— Callum Mintzis

The full album is out this Friday, March 1st, as a limited edition CD or a digital download, which you can grab directly from the composer’s Bandcamp.