site info


Michel Banabila + Maarten Vos

Banabila Sound Years

Banabila + Vos

MICHEL BANABILA + MAARTEN VOS – HOME

Michel Banabila‘s musical tree has many roots. Those of you that have checked out his back catalogue (and I hope most regular readers have done), know that it includes experimental electronics, as well as world fusion, jazz, and many productions for theatre, dance, movies and documentaries.
Every branch of his output is interesting in its very own right, but I dare say that his work for theatre and dance productions may often be his most emotionally engaging, as well as the most accessible for audiences not particularly used to ‘experimentalism’.
There’s an impressive list of his work for theatre [here], in case you might know (listing in Dutch).

In the past Banabila  has regularly worked with Conny Janssen for her well-known dance ensemble Conny Janssen DanstFor their 25th anniversary production Home -currently touring the dutch theatres extensively-  she asked him to create the music in collaboration with Maarten Vosand play it live at every performance.

Maarten Vos is a classically trained Dutch cellist.  who also studied Live Electronics. His work combines the two musical areas, merging the two disciplines into a new one. He has collaborated with many other artists such as Julianna Barwick, Greg Haines, Loney Dear, Machinefabriek, The Kyteman Orchestra, and now of course with Banabila. 
Both artists worked together intensely preparing the soundtrack for Conny Janssens’ anniversary production, and their work is captured on this CD which is currently available at the performances. And hopefully – if stock permits – after the tour has ended.

 

Even without attending the dance performance it was written for, it’s an impressive and diverse soundtrack. A golden combo of electronics and cello  (Maarten Vos is a cellist primarily, but with a soft spot for modular electronics too), capable of conjuring a  multitude of emotions with diverse musical styles.

Their music constantly evolves, so it is doubtful that the music on the last performance will be the same as on the first. As mature and complete as the music on this album may sound, the music captured on CD can be seen as a ‘basic draft’, simply because the CD had to be manufactured before the tour started. This means that the music will have evolved further and some of the tracks will have seen many reworks over time.
Banabila and Vos have found a solution for this: after the tour ends, the music will be made available via Bandcamp in different versions: a complete version (containing the full CD version and various reworks), and an ‘additional’ version containing the reworks only (for those that have already bought the CD version at the CJD performances).

All this, of course, is about the music soundtrack only. But if you read this before the tour ends and live anywhere near Holland, I advise to go see one of the performances for the full Conny Janssen Danst experience. (If tickets are still available, that is).
For all others: keep an eye on the Bandcamp page to see when the full edition is released (which will be the first week of may).


Banabila Sound Years

MICHEL BANABILA – SOUND YEARS

Sound Years is a compilation of previously released tracks (with the exception of the previously unreleased opening track Close To The Moon). All are hand-picked by Michel Banabila himself and mixed into two continuous tracks – one for each side of the vinyl album. The selection is taken from various projects: some of them from theatre works, some of the more recent experimental electronic music, an occasional live recording, and a selection of his collaboration works with Oene van Geel and Rutger Zuydervelt (Machinefabriek).

The oldest tracks are taken from 2005’s Hilarious Expedition, the newest are from 2016. They are selected to create a continuous uninterrupted flow.
The sound is immediately recognisable as Banabila‘s – especially in his trademark use of ‘alien vocal’ samples (like in E.T. and Vuka Vuka!).
The set is a perfect demonstration of Banabila‘s mastership of creating moods and atmospheres. A soft, warm, comfortable selection that is slightly unnerving and ‘outerworldish’ at the same time.

Sound Years can perhaps be seen as Banabila‘s companion to KLF’s ‘Chill Out’ album: a slow walk through quiet (yet alien) landscapes. Unknown, full of surprises, yet always vaguely familiar.

Banabila has claimed that this could very well be his last physical release before going 100% digital. I wouldn’t take his word for that myself, but if it is, this beautifully packed (transparant vinyl) album (with a striking cover photo by Gerco de Ruijteris a ‘perfect goodbye’ to the vinyl medium.

Purchase of this transparent-vinyl album comes with a download that includes the unreleased Close To The Moon track as a separate bonus track.

DOWNLOAD CODE GIVEAWAY:

The vinyl version of this album is available now (and selling fast), but the digital-only version of this album will be released on March, 21.
Three free advance download codes are available for commenters that answer one of these two questions below:

  • Who would you like to see Banabila collaborate with?
  • Can you take a guess about his favourite fruit?

Entries close sunday february 26!

Winners will be drawn randomly.
Thanks to Michel Banabila for providing these download codes!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


James Murray * Michael Begg * Finglebone

Daubigny - Landscape by Moonlight

Eyes to the Height

JAMES MURRAY – EYES TO THE HEIGHT

James Murray is the label owner of Slowcraft RecordsHe is also the one that created the music of Anne Garner’s bewitching album Be Life, one of my personal favourite albums.

As a solo artists, his albums are always a surprise, because you’ll never know what to expect. Murray is always exploring different styles of electro-acoustic and experimental music: “switching things around when the time feels right.”

Eyes to the Height
, his seventh solo album, is “a ten chapter story reflecting the fragile beauty of life and loss, memory and function.”
It’s labeled ‘modern ambient’, but in fact it rises above a genre tag like that.
With the use of rhythms without losing the ‘ambient’ touch, this album manages to create a delicate balance of ‘pop’ and ‘ambient’ where many others have failed.

There’s a great attention to every detail: in sound production as well as in composition. The album is fully instrumental, but each of the ten pieces feels like a complete “song”.
Wouldn’t it be a nice experiment to create a vocal version of this album using these tracks? There are a lot of albums with instrumental versions of previously vocal tracks, but I’ve never seen that done the other way around.
It’s fun to think about where that would lead to. But let’s be clear: I don’t want to suggest that  something is ‘missing’ on this album. On the contrary!

There are only very few people capable of creating ‘quantum ambient’ music: music that is ambient and isn’t ambient at the same time.

Also on Spotify


A Moon That Lights Itself

MICHAEL BEGG – A MOON THAT LIGHTS ITSELF

In 2016, Michael Begg was commissioned to compose music based around the 19th century painter Charles François Daubignywho is considered an important precursor of Impressionism.
The music was performed in september at the Scotland National Gallery, by Michael Begg accompanied by cellist Clea Friend. After this performance, Begg completed the work in his studio.

A Moon that Lights Itself is dedicated to the work of Daubigny, who painted his nocturnal scenes from his  boat studio. It is conceptually linked to the invention of the phonautographthe earliest known device for recording sound, by Edouard-Lean Scott de Martinville in the same period (years before Edison’s phonograph!). The first ever recording of a human voice was Au Clair De La Lune.

That is a lot of conceptual background information, I know. But it helps to get the feel of this album, its atmospheres, and explains the reason for the ghostly Au Clair De La Lune theme in the track The Birth Of Modernism. 

You can trust Michael Begg to come up with a haunting album that matches this concept in every detail. Overall, the music is dark, like nocturnal music should be. But it’s not a darkness to be afraid of. It’s a darkness to dwell in… just imagine you’re drifting in a boat on a quiet lake, watching the night sky and the moon, and trying to capture that in painting.
Or in music.


Sunlit Plumes of Dust

FINGLEBONE – SUNLIT PLUMES OF DUST

Whitelabrecs (one of Harry Towell’s outlets of experimental electronic/acoustic music) rounds off its first year with this release by Finglebone, aka Adam VarneyAn album crossing the thin lines between folk/post-rock and electronic ambient. Adam’s finger-picking guitar adds a refreshingly bright sound to the imaginary landscapes, creating an “introspective world inhabited by the gosts of memories, the looming spectre of death and the passing of time.”

But it’s not a ‘dark’ album at all: the guitar strings, soundscapes and found sound mix is expressing “melancholy, reverie and the feeling of alienation.”
It’s a very personal album, “loosely based on Adam’s experience caring for his Grandfather during his final weeks. He witnessed how dementia would render him silent, lost in his own mind, but then release him back into reality.”

All but one of the eight tracks are instrumental pieces around 3-4 minutes in length. The exception to this is the 12 minute track Blazing Golden Sun, which features a poem by James E.M. Smith, “Grovely”, describing the local woods where Adam spent many hours as a child.

As usual for Whitelabrecs releases, the physical CDr edition has only 50 copies which will probably be gone soon.  

Tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


Gideon Wolf – Year Zero

Gideon Wolf Slow

Gideon Wolf Year Zero

GIDEON WOLF – YEAR ZERO

The Fluid Audio label has built itself quite  a reputation for their releases: for the quality of the music as well as for their luxury packaging. As a result, most of their releases are sold out before the official release date, on pre-order alone.
Since there was no sign of a digital release, I hadn’t considered a recommendation of the new Gideon Wolf album, since no one would be able to buy the album by the time I wrote about it.
But things changed along the way: a small batch of physical releases popped up unexpectedly (some 25 at the time of writing, so not much left by now I guess), and the release was made available as a digital download on Gideon Wolf‘s Bandcamp page.

Gideon Wolf is the alias of Tristan Shorr, and Year Zero is his 4th album since 2012. It’s a solo album, in a way, but it could not have come to life without the contributions of a small ensemble of artists that played improvisations or ‘incoherent and strange phrases/notes’ that were later reassembled into the resulting pieces.
The music could be labeled ‘neo-classical’, because of its instrumentation: a cello, two violins, a synth. But it’s not the kind of melancholic cinematic music usually connected to this genre tag. The arrangements are much more abstract and adventurous, each track with a different sound balance, exploring different structures and string arrangements. Some are almost ‘classical’ or ‘minimal’, but most of the tracks explore a more ambient or experimental structure.
The closing tracks Noise and Nova introduce the additional vocals of Tristan’s daughter and his ‘partner in life and work Rachel Champion. 

Working the other way around – composing pieces from instantaneous improvisations and a collection of short phrases – has  given this music a refreshing element of surprise. And it’s exactly that element that makes this album stand out among many others.
Thát, ánd the luscious packaging of course.
But I won’t spend too many words on that: you can simply check this page or check the original Fluid Audio release page for details.
The (25) beautiful photo prints included in the package are also included in the download set, which also includes a bonus track (so download it even if you bought physical) and some screensaver images.

Tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


Various Various

Homework Year 1

A selection from the many label compilations that were recently released – looking ahead at 2017, looking back at 2016, or maybe even looking back at the last 15 years:

anticipation of an uncertain future

ANTICIPATION OF AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE

The near future of 2017 may be unpredictable on a worldwide political scale, but fortunately this 40 minute (9 track) compilation of recent and upcoming Preserved Sound releases is reassuring: there will always be great music to take a break from everyday absurdity!

Artists include Visionary Hours, Aaron Martin, Richard Youngs, Max Ananyev, Endless Melancholy, Poppy Nogood, Adrian Lane, Ales Tsurko and CovarinoIncorvaia.
A wide range of instrumental genres show all kinds of beauty this label has to offer. There’s influences from ambient, folk, improv,  jazz, post-rock, neo-classical and experimental electronics (the Ales Tsurko track [Grusha] uses regular expressions to generate music from random Wikipedia articles!)

Generously offered as a Name Your Price download.


Illuminations

ILLUMINATIONS

I am not sure if all tracks from this massive Dronarivm compilation are previously unreleased, but the subtitle “The New Year 2017 Free Compilation” suggests so.
But even if they were previously released, only the most dedicated label addict would recognise all of the 28 tracks on this two-and-a-half hour compilation.
The collection is presented without any notes but a quote from Arthur Rimbaud’s ‘Illuminations VI‘:
“… The colours proper to life deepen, dance and detach themselves around this Vision in the making…. .

Currently, Dronarivm is one of the experimental ambient genre’s most important labels, and the line-up of this collection shows why: Olan Mill, Giulio Aldinucci, Autistici, Spheruleus, The Green Kingdom, Offthesky, Aaron Martin, Dag Rosenqvist, Elegi, Legiac, Maps and Diagrams, Strom Noir, Wil Bolton, Enrico Coniglio, Christopher Bissonnette, Porzellan and Bartosz Dziadosz  – and that is only about two-third of the contributors!

Generously offered as a Name Your Price download.


Home To Wander

HOME TO WANDER

Home Normal looks back to 2016 with this 11-track (58 minute) overview featuring tracks they ‘were lucky enough to release in 2016’.
It’s a kaleidoscopic overview of the versatility of this quality label that cannot be pinned down to one style but always guarantees a journey into adventurous new paths.

Artists include David Cordero, Altars Altars, Giulio Aldinucci, M. Ostermeier, Ian Hawgood, Stefano Guzetti Ensemble, Isan, Asuna, Stijn Hüwels/Dudal and A New Line Related.

Generously offered as a Name Your Price download.


Homework Year 1

HOMEWORK, YEAR 1

In an ascending order of track count and playing time, this compilation comes last.
52 tracks that fill up seven (7!) hours and 40 minutes! And, apart from that, áll of the tracks are new and previously unreleased.

The concept of this overview is a bit different: is doesn’t look back to 2016 only, or looks ahead at 2017, but it celebrates the 15 years of existence of the Taâlem label. And they do so in a special way: asking every artist that ever had a release on Taâlem to contribute an unreleased track that was recorded or finalised in 2016 – so it’s all brand new music, not a retrospective!
The list of contributing artists is not complete: some of the artists could not be retraced, others have stopped making music, etc. But the result is imposing enough as it is!

Due to the label’s nature, the music is more abstract and experimental than usual, presenting a lot of sound experiments, field recordings, musiqe concrête and industrial soundscapes – so it’s also the most ‘hardcore experimental’ compilation in this short list. But the tracks are thoughtfully arranged: playing the collection feels like complete overview of all corners of experimental electronics and ambient music.

I cannot mention all of the 52 contributing artists here, so I’ll randomly pick a few familiar names: Aidan Baker, Mathieu Ruhlmann, Emerge, Yui Onodera, Tobias Hellkvist, Encomiast, Simon Whetham, Fabio Orsi, Strom Noir, Pleq/Lauki, Philippe Lamy, Enrico Coniglio, Yannick Franck and Jeff Stonehouse.

And the best news, once again: generously offered as a Name Your Price download.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


DreamScenes 2017-1

DreamScenes Logo

Let’s kick off this brand new year of monthly DreamScenes with a selection to tickle your inner eyelids and induce a variety of images:
some movie/series/game soundtrack tracks, a bit of drone, post-classical piano, and some pieces a bit harder to classify.

Tracklist:

Tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


Jana Irmert * Wndfrm * David Fyans

David Fyans - Somnambulist

Jana Irmert

JANA IRMERT END OF ABSENCE

Berlin-based sound and media Jana Irmert may have an impressive track record in sound design, multichannel audiovisual installations and exhibitions, yet this is her very first album.
It brings together six impressive examples of the versatility of her work, merging ” field recordings, experimental electronic sounds and vocal patters into unique multilayered soundscapes.”

Knowing that many or most of these pieces were created for multichannel performances hurts me (a bit). How I wish for the moment that obtaining/downloading multichannel versions is just as easy as it is for the stereo versions. But that, of course, is just my personal hangup. And I can assure you that the stereo versions of these pieces are impressive enough.

The opening title track is made of peaceful field recordings placed in a haunting context, the next track is a poetic spoken word track embedded in what seem to be experiments with various microphones. Obstacles is filled with white-noise-like waves that are as noisy as they are calming, and is followed by a mysterious track built from vocal samples.

It’s an album full of contrasts, a multi-faceted vision on sound art. But in the end the contrasts fit together like the piece of a puzzle and paint a fascinating kaleidoscopic image.

WhisperWhisperScream….

Also on Spotify


WNDFRM

WNDFRM – A LAND OF FALLING WATERS

This 31 minute piece is (once again!) a stereo version of what originally was a quadrophonic live performance. Tim Westcott, sound artist from Portland, Oregon, started with field recordings from the region of Cascadia, a region known for its diverse climates and bodies of water.

The found sounds are heavily processed (and ‘re-purposed’) into a slow-moving drone piece with shifting sceneries and a dense atmosphere – where you can almost feel the area’s thick fog. But don’t think the ‘drone’ reference means that nothing much happens.
As the scenes change, the atmosphere gets more intense and more pressing. Rumbling low sounds that could come from a large waterfall as well as from a plane flying over low…
And, of course: water everywhere.


David Fyans - Somnambulist

DAVID FYANS – THE SOMNAMBULIST’S FIELD GUIDE

If counting sheep doesn’t help you fall asleep, you might as well try this release by David Fyans, also known as Erstlaub.
If insomnia does not bother you but you dó like experimental drone music, you might enjoy this one, too.

This particular release features a single 61 minute track as well as a video showing a moon-like object filled with rippling water.
The soundfield changes slowly, starting as a drone but turning into what can best be described as an immersive audio sculpture:
“The listener does not suddenly find themselves thrown into new territory, rather realises that he is no longer on familiar ground and must take in and process their current surroundings in the drift.”

The Somnambulist’s Field Guide has been presented in various incarnations of installation performances before it found its way to this multimedia edition.

If you’re capable to surrender yourself to the meditative, hypnotic video (or just the music, whatever you prefer), you’re likely to “embrace a sense of ‘otherness’, meditate on the spacial and psychological qualities of sound, and traverse dense and varied landscapes, conjured from the absence of silence.”

Tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


Ariel Guzik * Cut Worms * Cinema Perdu * Orphax

Ariel Guzik

Ariel Guzik

ARIEL GUZIK – CORDIOX

I was lucky enough to be in Venice at the 2013 Biennale, so I was able to experience an installation of the Cordiox machine in old San Lorenzo Church.
It was an impressive setup, this enormous machine in a reverberating space, generating a sound that I could immerse myself in for hours.
So three years later it is a nice surprise to find this release on the Vox Archives label – ‘a label released in the intersection of the visual and sound’.

 

Guglielmo Marconithe inventor of the radio’ had a vision that ‘sound never dies, it emanates and resonates eternally, it floats around us as an etheric entity, waiting to be captured’. He dreamt that with a development of his inventions he would be able to hear it, to hear the voices of the past.

The Cordiox is Ariel Guzik‘s installation machine that seems to capture some of these etheric frequencies and translate them into sound. The installation reacts to its immediate surrounding: the complex contraption is not intended as an instrument, but as a “means for listening (to) what is inaudible in the surroundings, and in turn, give it back in different degrees of harmonic force”.

In its vinyl form, you’ll miss the beauty of the instrument, with its giant strings attached to mysterious anachronistic wooden closets featuring all kinds of knobs and switches.
But what you dó get is a beautiful recording of drone sounds that are clearly different from all other drone recordings. Which is due to the nature of this sound: It is the recording of the air.
“Only the air. What else, since sound is nothing other than the percussion of air?”

In case you wonder: the person on this album cover is neither Ariel Guzik nor Guglielmo Marconi: it’s James Clerk Maxwell, known for his classical theory of electromagnetic radiation.



Ariel Guzik – Cordiox 4


Cut Worms

CUT WORMS  – LUMBAR FIST

Lumbar Fist may be Cut Worms’ first album, but it certainly is not the first project Richard van Kruysdijk is involved in: he has been releasing music in many different projects since 1993. His work is published under many different aliases and covers many different styles. He has played and performed with many well-known musicians such as Peter Christopherson (Coil), Edward Ka-Spel, Graham Lewis, Jarboe, Blaine Reininger – to name but a few.
For the ‘atmospheric, cinematic, intuitive drone music’ on this solo project he avoids using prefab loops and settings, but creates all sounds from scratch using live generated and processed sounds both acoustic and electronic.  The result is inventive drone music clearly showing Van Kruysdijk‘s sound design skills.
Not only very pleasing to listen to but also interesting enough to try to distinguish the sounds you hear.
Most of the album consists relatively quiet droning, slowly building up to a somewhat more noisy climax at the end in Slow Binging. 

Also on Spotify


Cinema Perdu

CINEMA PERDU – INTERVENTIONS IN A LANDSCAPE

Apart from releasing his music as Orphax (see below), Sietse van Erve also runs the Moving Furniture label, a label focussing on experimental electronic music and steadily working on an impressive catalogue.
Interventions in a Landscape is a recent release in this series.
Cinema Perdu (Martijn Pieck, also known as co-composer in the [Law-Rah] Collective) describes his music as “Soundtracks without Movies”.

“I usually use field recordings as a starting point for my compositions. With all kinds of other sound sources […] I want to musically (re)create the feeling of a place at a certain time.”

This describes the process of creating the four pieces on this album, all named after a Dutch coastal landscape. But do not expect the gentle sound of rolling waves, because these are spot where the human intervention is felt in every detail.
The sound of the coastal landscape may be the source, but the ‘interventions’ have made them into more industrial drones. Which is no surprise if, for example,  you know that IJmuiden is the home of a gigantic complex  (formerly Hoogovens Nederland, now Tata Steel).
But amidst all these industrial interventions, there is still room for more quiet moments. And it’s exactly that strengthening of contrasts’ that adds the extra dimension to these recordings.


Orphax thai ngoc

ORPHAX – MUSIC FOR THÁI NGOC

This minimal drone was created during a period when Sietse ‘Orphax‘ van Erve‘s suffered of insomnia – maybe caused by the end-of-summer warmth, or maybe because of hay fever, or whatever other reason. It’s all about lying in bed and wondering why you actually can’t sleep.
This explains the extremely restrained atmosphere of this drone: not much going on except for a comfortable, slowly changing blanket of sound that might help you fall asleep.

It also explains the title: Thái Ngọc, the person this album is named after and dedicated to, is a Vietnamese insomniac who claimed he hasn’t slept in over 43 years – fully functioning without sleeping after a bout of fever in 1973. Only in 2006 he reported that he was beginning to feel “like a plant without water” due to the lack of sleep.
It is unknown if he has slept in the 10 years following that 2006 statement, but I sure would like to know how he would have reacted to this relaxed and unhurried, somewhat lo-fi hour of drone.

Also on Spotify

Tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


Sonmi451 * Machinefabriek /+ Banabila * Legiac

Crumble

Alice

SONMI451 – ALICE

From Belgium comes Bernard Zwijzen‘s Sonmi451named after one of the main characters in David Mitchell’s novel “Cloud Atlas“.
Ever since 2005 Sonmi451 produced a steady stream of albums (some of which you may already know from this blog).
Alice is his 11th full album, this time self-released and available from Bandcamp only.

With a title like this the association is obvious and that is confirmed by titles like I Didn’t Know That Cats Could Grin or How Queer Is Everyting Today. Step into the wondrous world of Lewis Carrol’s Alice In Wonderland to enjoy a beautiful and colourful world where not everything is what it seems.

The tones are soft and warm, the music is adventurous yet without threats. A place you will want to dwell in, especially with the Japanese ‘Alice’ (soft whispered fragments from works of Haruki Murakami) guiding you through the enigmatic and colourful landscape to make sure you don’t accidentally step on something delicate and vulnerable.


Macrocosms

MICHEL BANABILA & MACHINEFABRIEK – MACROCOSMS

Their fourth collaborative album shows Michel Banabila and Machinefabriek in a playful mood, somewhat less abstract than on their previous album Error Log.
Macrocosms radiates the joy of swapping sound files and surprising each other in turn with an unexpected twist of the material: field recordings from the Biala Woda nature reserve in Poland, musique concrête, noise, ambient, ‘fourth world’ samples, ‘Holger Czukay style’ sped up guitars, and whatnot…

“The overall theme deals with the macro and micro – how incredibly tiny and insiginificant we become when zooming out, and how wondrous small worlds can be found within ours when zooming in.” 

Michel and Rutger are a perfect pair: two giants of Dutch experimental music, combining the best of many worlds. Abstract experimentalism, cinematic romanticism, impressionistic environmentalism… it’s all in the details that merge into a recognisable trademark style and manages to surprise with every new release.
Also on Spotify


CrumbleMACHINEFABRIEK with ANNE BAKKER and EDITH KARKOSCHKA – CRUMBLE

The first few minutes of soft strings and electronic are a misleading introduction. After three minutes the music suddenly turns into a frightening bombardment of noise particles that lasts for more than 10 minutes. Only if you brace yourself you will hear the details within that sonic storm.
At the end of that sequence – almost unheard from the back of the noise wall – a new theme is introduced. The storm dies down, and is followed by a calm section featuring spoken words and poetry by Edita Karkoscha. The piece ends with an even calmer part where violinist Anne Bakker takes the lead.

Rutger ‘Machinefabriek‘ Zuydervelt has worked with Anne Bakker before (memorable releases like Deining and Halfslaap), but Crumble is quite different in nature and concept.
This is not an ‘easy’ piece to listen to; it requires full attention before it releases its rewarding secrets.
I have been wondering what Machinefabriek was actually trying to achieve here, with the dramatic turns and the enormous contradictions within one single piece.
I thought of the (unintentional) conceptual resemblance with Irreversible, Gaspar Noé‘s unforgettable movie that starts with a shocking climax and from there tells its story in backwards, reverse-chronological, order.
The movie’s tagline: “Time destroys everything” –  ultimately, everything will start to crumble.


Legiac

LEGIAC – THE VOYNICH MANUSCRIPT

Roel Funcken (core member of Funckarma and prolific Dutch musician, producer and DJ) has teamed up with Cor Bolten (member of the legendary Dutch art-wave band Mecano) to form Legiac.
This their third release: preceded by Mings Feaner (2007) and The Faex Has Decimated (2015, parts of which were recently remixed on this album).
The Voynich Manuscript has found a home on the Dronarivm label – a quality indication in itself.

Legiac‘s soundscapes are described as ‘mildly glitch-infused, modular explored sounds, weaving in ambient textures, field recordings and vast soundscapes.’
The title(s) are taken from a 15th century hand-written and illustrated codex – a mysterious text that raises a lot of unanswered questions about its content. You’ll have to use your imagination to link the music to tis 15th century mystery, because it’s not exactly mediaeval music you’re listening to. But they are mysterious in their own way.
The Voynich Manuscript combines 21st century soundscapes with subtle retro analogue sequencer sounds, merging the skills and experience of two prolific and experienced experimental artists.

Also on Spotify

Tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


DreamScenes 2016-09/10

DreamScenes Logo

I have enjoyed a holiday in September, so I had to skip last month’s DreamScenes edition.
To compensate for the immeasurable grief this must have caused, ánd to celebrate the start of autumn, this edition is a twice as long as usual.

So I hope you’ll enjoy these two hours of new (and relatively new) music to make you float away into your daydream…

Tracklist:

Tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

site info


OfftheSky * Tobias Hellkvist * Rasalasad

Kaskelot

Silent Went the Sea

OFFTHESKY – SILENT WENT THE SEA

Releasing your 50th album (since 2003) requires an appropriate celebration: so many albums in just over 13 years while maintaining an artistic quality standard (perfectly demonstrated on this anniversary album) is a truly remarkable achievement!

For this special occasion, Jason ‘OfftheSky’ Corder releases his 50th anniversary album Silent Went the Sea together with a second disc, a DVD containing the video version of the 8 tracks of the album (+1 bonus video by Monolyth & Cobalt). And if that was not enough, the physical CD also includes an extra EP download code.

So much for the good news… now here’s the sad part: the celebration party is nearly over now. Meaning the special edition is sold out..
But as usual, the digital version remains available.

 

Many of these tracks were originally written as soundtrack for the accompanying films on the DVD, but they work very well without those too.

The Silence of the Sea refers to that special moment ” when all of the waves cease and there is a loud lull of silence before the waves start crashing again.”
It’s a most effective kind of (nearly) acoustic ‘ensemble ambient’, performed on violin, cello, water instruments, vibes, bowed crotales, vocals, with Jason Corder adding all other sounds.


Kaskelot

TOBIAS HELLKVIST – KASKELOT (+ REMIXES)

There are quite a few mentions of works by Tobias Hellkvist on this blog, but Kaskelot is not among them. I don’t know why I missed this lovely original CD-R release (2011, on Tokyo Droninga Home Normal sidelabel), but I did.
So I’m happy to hear that 1631 Recordings presents a lovely reissue – with added bonuses!

The original EP contained 4 tracks – Kasekelot 1- 4 – with a total length of no more than 16 minutes. It is strikingly different from other Hellkvist‘s releases: not only because of the instrumental setting (organ, lap steel, piano, loop pedal, cymbals, guitar, vibraphone) but also how it came about:

“Originally sprung out of an idea conceived of 4 notes repeatedly played on a vibraphone and a grand piano, Kaskelot was composed and recorded on-the-go one late night in February, 2011 in Sigur Rós studio in Reykjavik, Iceland.”

Hellkvist slept on a camping bed in the recording room where he worked as an audio engineer on a different project, so he had the opportunity to use the instruments and gear available to play rather than getting sleep. With a fascinating – though relatively short – result!

For this reissue, the original tracks are remastered and slightly reworked, but still remain true to their original acoustical starting point. No heavy remixing or additional effects here: those are reserved for the six remixes that follow (50 minutes of extras in total). Almost unnoticeably subtle, the first remix (Seque) floats into into a more electronic setting, slowly building up to a noisy climax in the closing remix by Chris Herbert.

The remixers (Seque, Steve Pacheco, Pausal, Porya Hatami, Chihei Hatakeyama and Chris Herbert) all work with different details from the originals, but the different tracks match together perfectly into a beautifully diversified full album.


Thismorphia

RASALASAD – THISMORPHIA

Rasalasad, a.k.a Fernando Cerquira from Portugal, ‘mixes spoken wordcore, drone, broken word, illbient, experimental, library music’.
He is also the founder of the Thisco label and of the Antibothis anthologiesa series of books released together with a CD compilation. A busy man, obviously, with a lot of connections in the experimental music scene.

Thismorphia is a collection presenting different collaborations, with some artists contributing spoken word pieces for Rasalasad‘s background soundscapes (Jarboe, Wildshores, Von Magnet, John Zerzan), while others deliver the sound sources (irr.app. (ext.), Emil Beaulieu, Merzbow, Smell & Quim, Antonym).

The list of contributora indicate that this collection may not be meant for the faint of heart. Be ready for some dark noisy pieces, intricately balanced with more subtle ambient and spoken word tracks.


Tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.