Lomechanik is a dutch independent experimental music label celebrating their 25th release with the compilation called "Places": a 'Name Your Price' (!) download of 25 tracks (over two hours) especially created for this project by "old familiars as well as newly involved artists, with a certain place and/or memory as a starting point."
Souvenirs van de Woeste Grond
"Souvenirs van de Woeste Grond" (roughly translates as "Souvenirs from the Wasteland") is a part of a landscape-inspired art project inspired by the Dutch province "Overijssel".
"In this project two artists (Heidi Linck and Hans Jungerius) collected stories about the countryside landscape in order to save them from obscurity. In the second phase of the project eight different artists make a souvenir based on the collected stories."
This particular album (available as digital download or limited edition CD released by the adventurous Esc.Rec label), is one of those 'souvenirs'!
BRUNO SANFILIPPO - CLAROSCURO
Classically trained musician and composer Bruno Sanfilippo (Spain) presents a beautiful romantic and somewhat melancholic set of modern classical compositions for piano, violin (Pere Bardagi) and violincello (Manuel del Fresno).
"With the fragility and beauty of some Arvo Pärt compositions and a high cinematic touch, "ClarOscuro" brings the perfect soundtrack for an imaginary movie."
Rutger Zuydervelt - Stay Tuned
+ Machinefabriek - Stillness Soundtrack
Imagine a single 50 minute track album with contributions from more than 150 artists....
I can't even begin to list names here but you should definitely check the list on the Bandcamp page - I'm sure it'll raise your interest to find out more about Rutger "Machinefabriek" Zuydervelt's project"Stay Tuned".
Not counting their recent collaboration "Drowning in the Sky", with Sleep Orchestra, "Solstøv" is Pjusk's fourth release - and their third for the 12K label.
Since their debut in 2007, the Norwegian duo (Jostein Dahl Gjelsvik and Rune Andre Sagevik) have built themselves quite an impressive reputation.
With "Solstøv", (Sol - Sun / Støv - Dust) they don't disappoint - to say the least!
In the Shortlist sections, I will mention the albums that I enjoyed listening to, but couldn't find the time (or the right words) for a "full" review for. Still, I definitely think they deserve your attention, with ór without extra words!
RAPOON - THE FIRES OF THE BORDERLANDS
Originally released in 1995, this is considered a landmark album in the impressive catalogue of Rapoon (Robin Storey) releases. It became out of print long ago, but now receives a well-deserved expanded re-release: the double CD features a (near) 40 minute live recording for KFJC Radio (San Francisco) from 1996, next to the remastered version of the original album.
Inner Vision Laboratory is a musical project from the Polish artist Karol Skrzypiec, who describes his music as 'basically industrial dark ambient, also including elements of ethnic music, classical music, et al."
Harnes Kretzer - Petrichor
+ Ohrenbetäuberende Stille - No. 1
Building on the sound of a soft damped piano, including the breathing and squeaking sounds of the piano's inner mechanics, "Petrichor" risks being compared to the reference artist of the genre, Nils Frahm.
A comparision I guess almost every artists would fail.
"Dream Sequence" starts with a rumbling distant thunder and the dripping sounds of water in a bathroom nearby. Slowly - very slowly! - drone chords set in to create a calm soothing sound. But underneath, there is the dark foreboding sound of a low register piano pulse...
"We are Snoqualmie Falls, and this is the soundtrack to our dream life. Where we're from the birds sing a pretty song, and there's always music in the air."
Snoqualmie Falls - named after the scenic cascade in Washington State - is Jeff Stonehouse (a.k.a. Listening Mirror and Jffstnhs) creating the music and Alicia Merz adding her ethereal vocals.
Oe + Coniglio; Yannick Franck; Tone Color
Taalem is a Paris-based label - "exploring the different sides of ambient music through 3" CD-R's and FLAC downloads - with a somewhat different release policy:
"As we're tired of all these ultra-limited & ultra-expensive releases, taâlem discs are unlimited editions. As long as the demand exists, every release is available." Some fine examples from their recent releases:
∅E + ENRICO CONIGLIO - INNER FROST
21 Minutes (2 Tracks) of Glacial ambient created by ∅e (Fabio Perletta: guitar, loops) and Enrico Coniglio (guitar, field recordings, sampler).
The (december 2013) release was especially postponed because the music perfectly fits the winter season. The opening sounds of a harsh winter storm might give you some extra chills.
But in summer, this wide musical landscape full of fascinating details may help you cool down when desired!