Music Reviews



Nov 23 2014
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Artist: Foundation Hope / Council of Nine / Alphaxone / Coph`antae Tryr
Title: Tomb of Empires
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Cryo Chamber (@)
Rated: *****
This new release from this swedish dark ambient label is a sort of 4-way split release from artists that, except from Alphaxone, are new from this label. They are represented by two track for each project and express a way to search a personal path in the now formally established genre of dark ambient.
The most impressive outfit is Coph`antae Tryr, almost unknown at least from a google search, with "Comprehended", an evocative soundscape whose constructing elements are something between drone and guitar oriented, and "Nothing to Near", a quiet and dark track based on carefully constructed sound closer to some forms of doom metal than dark ambient. Council of Nine opened this release with "Chimes of the Unfortunate", a track closer to the lines of this label, with heavy basses and evocative samples and closes it with "Blood Lit Skies" where the basses are replaced with noisier sound lines, perhaps from field recordings. Foundation Hope, with "The Kind" and "The Beacon", gives the most musical complex tracks as they use drones, noisy sound and melodic lines with almost a narrative in mind.
Alphaxone, with "Mysterious" and "Near to Nothing", gives the most quiet and cinematic tracks of this release with the clear samples that seems foley sounds.
With four project with a clear musical profile, this release is more enjoyable than typical release of this genre, as it's really multifaceted. It's really worth a listen.

Matthias Grübel: The longest year in history

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Nov 23 2014
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Artist: Matthias Grübel (@)
Title: The longest year in history
Format: CD EP
Label: Audiobulb (@)
Rated: *****
This EP is presented as way to depict the spaces that defines "the speed of our lives" i.e., where we spend the most part of our lives and are related to the concept of routine. So, it sounds as a sort of ambient music but, in fact, is a sort of pop techno.
"Into Clouds" opens this release with a slow beat and a female voice creating an hypnotic mood. "Sing" is a melancholic track driven by a techno rhythmic line. "Close" is based on a sort of ethnic beat using metallic sound. "I Felt Weird" closes this release with layers of synth creating a folding atmosphere. The digital edition of this release features a couple of remix of "Sing" and "I Felt Weird" that, apart from the Zachov remix, are more dance oriented than the original tracks.
This release is an average quality release that could be interesting for party oriented mix tapes or dj set but I hope than a full length release could be more enjoyable for music listening.

Wil Bolton: Bokeh

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Nov 21 2014
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Artist: Wil Bolton
Title: Bokeh
Format: CD
Label: Home Normal (@)
Rated: *****
This new release by Wil Bolton, a sound artist whose name often appeared on this zine by means of his lovely drone-ambient outputs or for some releases he dropped by his imprint Boltfish or in the guise of Cheju, names after "bokeh", a word which refers to a well-known photographic blurring technique that comes from the alteration of the Japanese word "boke", meaning "blur" or "haze". Some photographers consider it an "optical aberration" as many "boke" could come from wrong focusing of the optical lens, but it could be intentionally added to bring out some object from background or for artistic photography. A friend of mine who has a mania for Japan and photography explained to me that "boke" is also the word to describe the mental confusion of aged people suffering from senile dementia, but even if Wil's sonorities could sound vaguely melancholic, I don't think it's connected to senility! The opening title-track seems to translate the above-described photographic 'out-of-focus' technique into sound as he blurred resounding objects such as seagulls or distant traffic noises by means of diluted atmospheric vanishing varnish and bulged clear bell-like hits and he follows a similar pattern on the following tracks where Wil slightly changes blurred elements and blurring dynamics: an indistinct chatter and a wrapping frequency which sounds like frowning on this interference on "Sash", driving rain and loooped metallic hits on the track that got named from the Welsh village of Tramadog, recurring traffic sounds, playing children and chirping birds that got wrapped into a Boards Of Canada-like sonic blister which renders a certain sense of lukewarm astonishment on the pleasantly lulling "1887", electric buzzes and other faint voices on the entrancing "Pentaprism". The final dedication to his 1-year old niece "Moonlight (for Sophie)" where he included the melody of her toy telephone and other rattles is the most tender moment of the release and could let you surmise that the sonic optical lens by which Wil filtered surrounding reality is a sort of childish reverie where the differentiations that feature the perception of adults got levelled off.
Nov 17 2014
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Artist: Lingua Fungi (@)
Title: Melankhton
Format: CD
Label: Aural Hypnox (@)
Rated: *****
When I read some notes about "Melankhton" according to which this album is "a sound interpretation of particular illness narratives and a study in experimental anthropology..." reflecting "the shifting states of the turbulent minds visited by 'Melankhton'", I thought that Melankthon was a sort of seraphic or alternatively devilish transfiguration of Philipp Melanchthon, the notorious German reformer, who has been regarded as the intellectual pulsating vein of Lutheranism, and judging by some aspects there could be some connection. Melanchton is widely known as the inventor of the term "psychology", but it seems that Jakko Padatsu, the mind behing Lingua Fungi, meant to use that term as a synonym of "soul seeking", whereas the five entrancing tracks of this record sound like an almost instinctive attempt of eliciting symphaty for mental sufferers , negative acception of soul seekers, by means of intensely evocative sonorities: the noise of a crackling pire on the opening "Wavy Guests" is the beginning and the end of a cycle where the reversed bells and the unexpected shamanic percussions seems to mirror the procession of phantasmagoric transient visions, which got rekindled over the quiet storms, the phoenix-like yells, the guitar-driven tribal dance and the obsessive pit-a-pat on "Departure", the hypnotical coalescence of cavernous waves, organic textures and alien melodies on the title-track "Melankhton", the dreamlike ballad of "Detached" as well as on the decisive last stage of this sort of sonic rite "Soma Dissolution", which sounds like adream withina dream. Another great act got added to Aural Hypnox catalogue, which released a deluxe box set (just 49 copies) including the already limited (449 copies) regular CD edition, two unique cyanotype prints and a silk-screen printed wooden panel which got housed inside a handmande cloth bag.

Ernesto Diaz-Infante: wistful entrance, wistful exit

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Nov 16 2014
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Artist: Ernesto Diaz-Infante
Title: wistful entrance, wistful exit
Format: CD
Label: Kendra Steiner Editions
Rated: *****
Poiché questa versione è stato ispirato da una morte in famiglia questo album, invece di mostrare la capacità virtuoso artista, si basa quasi interamente su un accordo che, variamente interpretato e con il riverbero del luogo, agisce come una forma di musica ciclo ma ha giocato invece di utilizzare un registratore. Così suona come le onde raffigurati sulla copertina di questa release come metafora del movimento circolare del tempo.
La prima traccia "questo" si basa sulle variazioni di un arpeggio cui note sono lentamente giocato in un modo che lascia le risonanze creano una meditazione e quasi triste atmosfera. La seconda traccia "lungo" si concentra sulla aggiunta delle varie risonanze delle note che, riverberante, raffigura una sorta di drone nel panorama della melodia. L'ultima traccia "momento" si basa sulla corda che viene lentamente variata riverbero della camera e il lento movimento del tempo di riproduzione.
Questo album suona come una sorta di meditazione silenziosa sulla vita e l'esistenza ed è una dichiarazione circa c'è più significato nella accurata riproduzione delle note di un singolo accordo alla ricerca di un suono e un'atmosfera, che nel gioco furioso di un milione di note ricerca dei limiti di gioco veloce. Un rilascio straordinario.


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