Off Key – 2nd Edition

Off Key

Anyone even remotely interested in ambient, electronic, contemporary experimental and modern classical music will problaby have come across the Fluid Radio website.

Fluid Radio is in fact a lot of online things…it’s a website reviewing essential releases, it’s an online radio channel (two channels, in fact: with a custom made iPhone/iPod App to play them).
It  has it’s own musical label (Fluid Audio, the label that has released 5 titles until now, all sold out immediately and legendary hand-packed).

A host of well-known artists (let’s say the “giants” of the ambient-electronic niche) have submitted handcrafted mixes of their own work or compilations of their favourite tracks to be published on the Fluid-Radio mixcloud Channel.

In other words – Fluid Radio has rapidly become the legendary starting point to explore contemporary indie-electronic music.

Fluid Audio/Radio is mainly curated by Daniel Crossley, who must have an impressive network of musical relations. Also, the amount of hours in a single day is obviously not the same as mine, regarding the love and care that goes in the packaging of his releases.

For example: the recent Hummingbird release ‘Our Fearful Symmetry’ came packed in a beautiful cover also containing a pine cone, lots of cloves, a sealed envelope containing liner notes,  and another sealed envelope containing a photographic polaroid slide pressed between to pieces of glass from the 1940’s…
The kind of release you don’t want to open to play it (that’s why I ordered two).

(By the way: I will not review the music, because it was sold out in one day and will not be released for digital download – so I guess there’s no need for any further attention since all releases have found their home).

Apart from all the work that goes into Fluid Radio/Audio, Daniel also manages to create his own mixes.
He recently published released “Off Key, volume 2“.
It’s an impressive mix in more ways than one.
Clocking more than two-and-a-half hours. Still, it’s remarkably consistent and coherent in style and atmosphere. The track list contains quite some interesting artists that have contributed to Fluid in any way, and also quite a lot of unreleased tracks or upcoming tracks including Field Rotation’s ‘Acoustic Tales’, Hessien’s ‘Obelisk/Stelea’ and a track from Christoph Berg’s project yet to be titled. Also worth noting on the track selection is a sublime remix of ‘Uncertainty in Copenhagen’ by Hummingbird.

In his own words, Daniel’s mix is a “rather personal selection that travels from light to dark and back again and reflects things that have been going on in my life of late.”

Check out this mix. It’s impressive.

It also revives faith in the state of the alternative music business.
Things are not as bad as they seem, considering the music included in this mix…
Well, maybe they’re “bad” for the “old-school” major companies, but for visionaries like Daniel Crossley, embracing all new possibilities to distribute music
passionately, these are simply fascinating times.

[Update: this mix is no longer available]

Off Key Playlist:

  • Antonymes – Endlessly
  • The Colossal Ithaca Trio & The Deus Ex Machina Arkestra – My Mind To Your Mind
  • Hummingbird – Uncertainty in Copenhagen
  • Sophie Hutchings – Sunlight Zone
  • Christoph Berg – Poems Written By An Old (prepared) Piano
  • Ólafur Arnalds – Kjurrt
  • Gary Jules/Michael Andrews – Mad World
  • Machinefabriek and Peter Broderick  –  Extract from In Session
  • Anna Rose Carter – My Piano Is Broken
  • Peter Broderick – Intake Part 2
  • Max Richter – Journey 5
  • Max Richter – Journey 3
  • Louisville – Forest
  • Adam Williams and Leonardo Rosado – What Has Gone is Lost Forever
  • Fieldhead – Planks of Wood
  • Hummingbird – Uncertainty in Copenhagen (Unreleased Edit)
  • Hessien – A Letter from Engels (Japser TX Remix)
  • Foxes in Fiction – Basement Window
  • Male – House of Ride
  • Field Rotation – Never Build A Bridge Into Nothingness
  • Evan Caminiti – Westward Sun
  • Damian Valles – Ground Truth
  • Clem Leek – The Burnt Home
  • Nest – Trans Siberian
  • Mains de Givre – Un Choeur Dames en Detresse
  • Scott Tuma & Mike Weis – Rubadub
  • Noveller – Fades
  • Aaron Martin – Kept Ashes
  • Field Rotation – Acoustic Tale 4

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