Music Reviews



Mako, Villem & Mcleod: Inner Revolution/Borrowed Love

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jan 28 2015
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Artist: Mako, Villem & Mcleod
Title: Inner Revolution/Borrowed Love
Format: 12"
Label: Utopia Music (@)
Rated: *****
Utopia Music big old milkwood tree keeps on germinate in wintertime as well as these small new juicy buds have blossomed from the machines of an excellent tryptich of brilliant Bristol-based dnb brains: Stephen "Mako" Redmore, Andrew "Villem" Wilson and McLeod let sunlight shine in listener's eardrum by wrapping frenzied rolling kicks and claps into fluffy chimes, pillowy pads, sonic dandelions and gentle piano touches that are going tickle your imagination and lead you into a sweet dream state. After they uplifted listers as if they got invited for a ride on a winged Pegasus, Villem and McLeod allows listener to keep on floating by a lovely half tempo track, "Borrowed Love", where soothing chilled sounds, metronomic keys and a resounding female voice are going to foray your dream states. It seems that dnb followers' expectation can not be disappointed by evergreen Utopia big tree's buds!

Dronny Darko: Outer Tehom

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jan 27 2015
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Artist: Dronny Darko
Title: Outer Tehom
Format: CD
Label: Cryo Chamber (@)
Rated: *****
This album is described as a 'drone album of darkest black, every track a perfect 13 minute summoning of elder gods forgotten in time'. Without any info this release could be described as a release as carefully constructed as void of any other goal that being a milestone in form construction.
The heavy and atmospheric drone of 'Black Arts' opens this release and is based upon his opposition to almost pure silence and isolated sounds and samples. The same musical development is the foundation of 'Mortal Skin' where the variations are so subtle but so constant that could be ignored by distracted ears. 'Snake Hole' depicts a soundscape of frightening beauty while 'Arcane Shrine' returns to more canonic dark ambient resonances well described with the statue depicted in the album cover.
This release is hard to rate as it's as beautifully sounding as admonishing to be a pure exercise of form. However, how could art be afraid of beauty? This release will be truly appreciated by fans of this genre.

Origami Galaktika: One

 Posted by Steve Mecca   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jan 26 2015
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Artist: Origami Galaktika (@)
Title: One
Format: CD
Label: Monochrome Vision (@)
Rated: *****
It never ceases to amaze me, all the electronic artists who have been releasing music for years and years that I've never even heard of. Such is the case with Origami Galaktika, the project name of one Benny Braaten from Norway. He's been at it since 1996 with 13+ releases to his credit, 'One' being the 13th. Since I haven't heard any of the other works I have no basis of comparison, but I can tell you that the music is experimental-ambient. 'One' is comprised of 8 tracks, most of them very different sounding. "Full Moon Blue Mirror" introduces a ringing tone over a watery element with spacious slightly dark ambient drone that increases in intensity as it moves forward. Sort of like exploring arctic underwater caves if such a thing is possible. "Ground and Open the Receptors" begins with a high pitched echoed keening tone offset by a low, moaning textured drone giving the impression of something avian flying over a vast wasteland. That low moaning drone seems to morph into processed bowed cellos and/or basses. "The Beautiful Wonders and Dimensions of Creation" has thick, processed, echoed low drone tones with a hint of the industrial...and then a strange echoed noise squall is added. Layers of harmonically rich echoed overtones are added as it treads into industrial noise territory, until it all gradually fades away. Track 4, "Clearing of Spaces" is radically different. Low, lumbering, rhythmic thumping and thudding like some primitive farm machine. "Slowly, but Perfect and Surely" features episodic waves of medium to low harmonic noise that ebb and flow. It shifts into something more choppy, then introduces higher harmonic tones intermittently. Some of these tones are high pitched squeaks and squawks. Other sonic elements come into play as well. A strange brew to be sure. "In the Heartroom- Movement is Everything/Homecoming" plays with different pitches of elongated low, heavily processed cello-like tones, intermittently interuptped by higher echoed tones gradually morphed by changing the echo time and intensity. The lower tones disappear leaving only the higher ones, then reprise a bit later as a slight undercurrent. Other more percussive echoed elements are added as the higher tones have faded away. "Bright White Light of Love, 300' K's pr. Second" utilizes brief, melodic echoed tones (pizzicato,like a struck stringed instrument) and a variety of effected sounds. At a point it almost seems to coalesce into an echo-rhythm. "Memories of Tibet" features the sound of dharma trumpets (those long Tibetan horns) over incidental background sounds of unknown origin and eventually a muted hand-drum rhythm for a brief period. Okay, well that's it. 'One' enigmatic listen to be sure. I liked some parts more than others and likely you may too. The fact that Benny has been working for nearly 20 years in his field certainly accounts for quite a bit. This may be more sophisticated than I'm giving credit for, and perhaps in a month or two my impressions of the work might be different. If you're up for something challenging in the experimental-ambient genre, 'One' could be just the ticket.

Claude Speeed: Sun Czar Temple

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jan 22 2015
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Artist: Claude Speeed
Title: Sun Czar Temple
Format: 12"
Label: Planet Mu (@)
Rated: *****
According to Planet Mu's words, the brilliant Scottish producer Claude Speeed ended up on label's long-range radar since his "Infinity Rework" of Kuedo's "Work Live & Sleep In Collapsing Space" in 2012 and after the approaching to planet's surface on the rocket of his debut album "My Skeleton" that Glasgow-based label LuckyMe launched in 2014, Claude finally entered in label's orbit by means of its follow-up "Sun Czar Temple". The igniting energy supply of this sonic satellite comes from the sun or, to be more accurate, by Solar Parallax distortion, whose "monolithic slabs" radiate cosmic energy from the opening track "Traumzeuge", whose tender vocals, floating piano and quickly fading warm guitar phrasing will let listeners swim into the previously poured dazzling light. Listeners can only but working like photodetectors by grabbing beams of leaking lights on the following "Dr.Liz Wilson" whose sweet bunches of sinewaves, hidden drums and rising tones are really cathartic. In the middle of the EP, we find Claude in the middle of an empty forest where he recorded some field recordings, the peaceful background for loops of tape hissing and day-dreaming chords and a sense blissfully happy isolationism spurts from the following "Fret" as well and the stunning sluice of "R U Sorry?", proper sonic kiss after so much diving into light.

µ-ZIQ: Rediffusion

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jan 22 2015
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Artist: µ-ZIQ
Title: Rediffusion
Format: 12"
Label: Planet Mu (@)
Rated: *****
I'm in two minds about whether saying this release by Mike Paradinas (I want to believe that our readers don't need any introduction of this legendary British producer) is a futuristic retrospective or a forward-looking projection of relatively old stylistical elements. An attractive MILF could easily sort the issue out by a simple and catty clarification: classy beauty lasts forever and knows no age! The uplifting chord progression of "Taxi Sadness", the lullaby-like synth whistle fancied by angelical choirs and computational sparklers of "Rimmy", the dreamy beatless bubbling of "PRG", the glowing coldness over a poofy hip-hop movement of "Blem", the nostalgic sequence of drifts and decays of the metallic melodies which got wisely spread on bouncy bass and drums on "Smeester" and the awesome closer "Tambor" - my favorite moment of "Rediffusion" -, where the metallic clockwork seems to follow the merciless precision of the hand of a clock while some sneaky synths emphasizes the irreversible sense of decay: all these heart-rending plugs of this release got inspired by childhood memories of kids TV and the contemporary one-hour lasting post of a mix of 70's and 80's TV themes prove how wisely Mike can play nostalgia card, which I hope it isn't his last one.


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