Music Reviews



Oct 22 2014
Artist: E.P.G.
Title: We Are Electro
Format: 12"
Label: Electro Empire
Rated: *****
E.P.G.'s "We Are Electro" is the second release by the Electro Empire Records, label sub-label of Dominance Electricity and label that is deeply linked with the Electro Empire forum that you can find at http://www.electroempire.com/forum which is the longest established online community for the international Electrofunk, Bass and Technobreaks music scene. EPG a.k.a. Electro Pulse Generators are coming from England and wrote this anthem for the Electro fans, young or old, no matter the age. Using traditional instrumentation they take inspirations from classic electro acts such as The Jonzun Crew, The Egyptian Lover or Newcleus. On "We Are Electro" you can fin loads of classic analog synths, 808 drum sounds and vocoder vocals that duel with scratches, synth stabs, deep bass lines, catchy melodies and everything to make of this tune a classic. Also, what it is interesting to notice, is that the song is like built of different modules which sums different electro styles and this is really nice. The limited edition 12" contains two version of the track and is available at www.saveoursounds.net but you can check it at this link first https://electroempire.bandcamp.com/album/we-are-electro
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Artist: Ueno Masaaki
Title: Ununseptium/ Vortices
Format: 12"
Label: Raster-Noton (@)
Rated: *****
Four years after the discovery by Yuri Tsolakovich Oganessian, a group of American and Russian researches and nuclear physics of the 117th element by means of the fusion of Calcium and transuranic radioactive chemical element Berkelium at Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Raster-Noton discovered its 117th element for unun series, the notorious series of releases, named after the family of transuranic or superheavy elements. Its scientific connection got emphasized by Japanese sound-artist Ueno Masaaki, whose four tracks for the seventh ring of this chain are aimed to be a sort of reconstruction of natural laws and forces by means of complex polymeric grooves, clipped rhythimcal cuts, clusters of chopped metallic hits and overclocked suctions of piercing bass pulsations, which could be vaguely described as a possible groovy declension of Autechre or Emptyset stuff. It might sound repetitive only to absent-minded listeners, as more attentive listeners will easily appreciate the rich assets of sonic detailes of this zipped stuff.
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Artist: Three Winters
Title: Chroma
Format: CD
Label: Termo Records
Rated: *****
Kim Solve, Anders B and Lars Fredrik Froislie are back, after their tape EP released on spring 2013, with the first Three Winters CD album titled "Chroma". Out on the Norwegian label Termo Records, the album contains the three tracks of the previous release ("Aeon Surveillance" is a new MKII version) plus eight new ones. On my EP review I wrote that I was curious to listen to a whole album by Three Winters and now that I was able to do so, I can tell you that this is a great one. You know, in the last decade a lot of bands have produced music influenced by late 70s / early 80s electronic music of the likes of John Carpenter, Tangerine Dream or . All bands that influenced bands like Zombi (and the other solo projects by Paterra and Moore), Zombie Zombie, Survive, Umberto, Xander Harris, Gatekeeper, etc. The difficult thing about this kind of stuff is to keep the music and the atmosphere interesting without focusing everything on the horror effect and I think that Three Winters won their bet. We have mid tempos with pounding 80s drum sounds (something similar to the Linn drum used by Human League on "Dare" and to the 808 on tracks like "A Thousands Piercing Lights") and catchy melodies that are enriched by fat synth sounds which roar like old lion kings. Vocals are sparse and filtered (check "Rapture") but are functional to the tracks. Arpeggios duet with leads while bass lines boast out of the speakers creating a mesmerizing atmosphere. You gotta check this out if you like the genre!
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Artist: Phurpa
Title: Mantras of Bön
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
This musical project aims to create meditative music with its roots in the ancient pre-buddhist tradition BON, so, it's something conceptually close to the rivers of minimalism more focused on topics like just intonation and micro tones. According to the linear notes 'the musicians themselves stress the spiritual nature of their activity' so it's not something to hear in the background while driving a car or in a noisy environment.
This album is composed by live performance's recordings and the first part, composed by the two tracks 'Live in St. Petersburg' and
'Live in Moscow', features vocalist Alissa Nicolai that impress the listener with the purity of her tones, and her spoken works, that resonates with low tones drones made by Alexey Tagin in the background. The second part features the vocals of Alexey Tagin and is composed by three tracks: 'Mu-Ye - Live at CTM Berlin', based on a didjeridoo and cymbals, 'Kuntunzangpo' and 'Mi Dud', based on vocals and cymbals. While the description of the track could describe a rather monotone release, the charm of this music lies in the ability, with the linear, intoned and moving drones, to focus on subtle movement of the sound so, if listened distractedly, could be even sound boring but, actively listening, a door to personal perception opens.
This kind of music couldn't be recommended to anyone as it requires a type of fully committed listener but, fans of Sunn O))) or Phill Niblock, will love this release. So this album has no rating as I would give a 5 star but it's an irksome listening for everyone not used to this music.
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Artist: Adriano Orrù (@)
Title: Palimpsest
Format: CD
Label: pan y rosas (@)
Rated: *****
The concept behind this interesting collaborative release by double-bass player Adriano Orru' is summarized by its title: "Palimpsest" doesn't refer to tv or show schedule as the word to describe it derives from the same Latin word, but to the scratches which were made on old parchment manuscripts in order to rewrite on them. Likewise that operation, this release comes the verlapping of improvisations on previously recorded improvisations on electric bass by other musicians. Besides this p2p-like compositional technique, which has already been widely used in electronic music even if it's quite orginal in the field of electroacoustic improvisation, the most remarkable aspect is the way the following inserts highlights or mutates Adriano's inputs and I suggest a proactive listening to anyone who are going to have a listen to it by trying to mntally separate the electric bass parts from the following layer before focusing on their amalgamation. The inputs I liked a lot are the ones by brilliant Portuguese musician Paulo Chagas who shows a versatility that I already appraised on a release he co-signed on Creative Sources by keying his soprano sax to the oblique slides of "Bortadie", by let his bass clarinet stressing the path Adriano traces on "Chant and by emphasizing the spiritual tension of "On Different Shores" and the final "Haze" on flute. The scrapes by composer and pianist Silvia Corda are likewise interesting, particularly the one on the slightly neurotic "Ostinato" and the narrative "The Rain Tree Under The Rain", one of those track where listener should try that "detaching" attempt in order to appreciate the magnifying lens that following musicians put between the draft and their musical hand, while many followers of Chain DLK will supposedly appreciate the duets with Mauro Sambo (samples, electronics, marimba, tibetan bell, gong) as it seems that he focused on the concept of "scraping" by means of the wider palette of simulated sounds and suggestions that electronics could provide whereas Adriano's electric bass sounds more "scraped" as well. The release is available as a free download as well here: http://www.panyrosasdiscos.net/audio/palimpsest.zip
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