Luis Ianes: instrucciones de uso


Argentinean/Uruguayan guitarist, composer, and improvisor Luis Ianes releases, "instrucciones de uso”, a set of music both through composed and improvised on solo acoustic guitar. In the creation of this introspective set, he created a series of musical puzzles that he thoughtfully works through, and when taken together, form a poignant musical soundscape.


# Audio Title/Composer(s) Time
Total Time 32:45
01from scratch
from scratch
03azul lejos
azul lejos
05all the parts
all the parts
07partes del todo
partes del todo
09ho chi minh
ho chi minh

“This collection of compositions for acoustic and electric guitar explores the idea of a puzzle as a formal and constitutive idea. Based on Georges Perec’s novel “La vie mode d’emploi” written in 1978, the pieces work as a fragmented single composition in which each piece is an essential element that placed all together conforms the whole.

Georges Perec wrote in the Preamble of La vie mode d’emploi, “…a puzzle is not a group of elements that we need first to isolate and analyze separately, but an ensemble, a form, a structure. The element does not precede the ensemble; it is not more immediate or more ancient. The elements do not determine the ensemble but is the ensemble that determines the elements…”

Each one of these compositions contains a key element that, put all together, next to each other, reveals the original composition. Time, as we know, is a key factor in music and here our imagination needs to play games with it, in order to reconstruct the puzzle and form that final image.”

– L. Ianes

  • Recorded by Sam Nacht & Gonzalo Manco at Estudio Libres, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Mixed & Mastered by Sam Nacht at Libres (October 2018)
  • Art & Design by Juan Grippaldi

Luis Ianes

Luis Ianes was born in San Juan, Argentina. He started playing music at the age of 14 as a self-taught singer-guitarist playing rock, pop and popular songs. He later attended the local conservatory before moving to the US in 1995 where he completed a BM in Classical Guitar at CCM (College-Conservatory of Music) at the University of Cincinnati. He started graduate studies on guitar and composition, studying with Clare Callahan, Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon and later in New York with Sylvie Courvoisier and Brandon Ross. He lived in New York since 2003 writing, improvising, teaching and performing for over a decade, being part of original and contemporary musical projects as Parias Ensemble, Otra Gente, Interior and Trans-Atlantic, among other groups and musical adventures. He currently resides in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he is a teacher at EMC and is an active part of the scene as a performer and recording composer/improviser guitarist.




Paying homage to the late Georges Perec and his monumental novel, La vie mode d’emploi (Life, A User's Manual), is not something that happens often enough, so kudos to Ianes for injecting him into the conversation. Beyond all that, Ianes is a marvelous guitarist on either acoustic or electric instruments, conjuring all kinds of woody plucks and strums and shimmering chords for a quirky, engaging listen.

— Jeremy Shatan, 5.02.2020


Touching Extremes

Reorganizing emails from time to time spells “wisdom”. By doing so, in fact, I was able to catch up on some past, and regrettably unfinished exchanges with Argentine guitarist Luis Ianes, and finally proceed to listen to this disc, which he had kindly proposed to me nearly a year ago.

Ten tracks for acoustic and electric guitars, emanating from a “puzzle concept” influenced by Georges Perec’s novel La Vie Mode D’Emploi. In extreme synthesis, recurring fragments or parts – more or less recognizable by the ears – relate to a wholeness of sonic pictures. Beyond the theoretical considerations, Ianes must be admired for an outstanding quality: transparency. Putting both the compositional and the performing phase under the microscope, we observe concise, harmonically interesting structures; no frills and/or guitar-related commonplaces. The space between the notes (almost always clean) is definitely sufficient to enjoy the fascinating resonance of the strings, principally when the contrapuntal grain engenders slightly dissonant auras, tiny fingering indecisions appearing as ornaments. It takes courage and concentration to record the instrument as it is, naked and raw.

The choice to limit the duration of this cycle to just over half an hour is an additional plus of Instrucciones De Uso. One doesn’t get tired of listening; on the contrary, the desire to better interpret Ianes’ lucid creativity emerges rather immediately. That is to say: a modestly incisive work devoid of obvious tricks, to be spun at least two/three times in a row.

— Massimo Ricci, 2.14.2021

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