Music Reviews



LUCIANO MAGGIORE & FRANCESCO BRASINI : Chàsm' Achanès (huge abyss)

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 19 2011
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Artist: LUCIANO MAGGIORE & FRANCESCO BRASINI
Title: Chàsm' Achanès (huge abyss)
Format: CD
Label: Boring Machines (@)
Rated: *****
A single track cd that on Boring Machines that comes out almost simultaneously with Petit & Chapeter 24 and Mammuthones which some of you may know for his past duties in Jennifer Gentle. As I've said we have a long long drone driven suite that last for a bit more than half an hour, main instruments are a guitar, tapes and electronic devices. The structure of this suite is quite linear and simple, in some way the evolution of the track is quite ordinary infact in its linearity lays that hypnotic effect due to repetitions. The sound is good and despite its simplicity the recording gives this cd the aural credibility a serious record like this requires. As you probably have guessed yourselves the atmosphere is quite dense and crepuscular but according to the title's meaning the journey into an abyss couldn't different. Despite its obscurity this music has nothing to do with dark ambient meant in a traditional way and it's not just a matter of sounds but the fact in someway it all brings to some old isolationist works like Aura (Plotkins/KK Null), Eclipse or something in the likes. Despite some small changes the most considerable sound variation from the main theme happens around 22 minutes. The fact the guitar sound sometimes resembles the siren of a boat, also brought to my mind an old composition titled Fog Tropes, by underrated American composer Ingram Marshall.



ROTTERDAM: Cambodia

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 17 2011
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Artist: ROTTERDAM
Title: Cambodia
Format: CD
Label: Everest Records (@)
Coming from Vienna, Rotterdam are a duo formed by Susanne Amann (cello, flute, electronics) and Michael Klauser (acoustic guitar, electronics). CAMBODIA is their debut album and it is the result of ten years of sound experiments. The seven tracks of the album born from compression of sound treatments obtained from acoustic instruments mixed with samples. The result is a sort of minimal hypnotic schizophrenia which finds its way out through repetitive loops progressions. The effect is a particular one, because it sounds like a minimal techno album where the only source of rhythm is coming from strings picking, violin squeaking and I don't know what kind of treated sound source, which at the end sounds like a digital beat. The tracks sound obsessive and repetitive but the atmosphere span from melancholy to confusion passing though schizophrenia and isolation. Intense experience but avoid the listening if you are already feeling stressed by your daily life.

Edward Ka-Spel: The Minus Touch

 Posted by eskaton   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 15 2011
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Artist: Edward Ka-Spel (@)
Title: The Minus Touch
Format: CD
Label: Beta-lactam Ring Records (@)
Rated: *****
You can get a sense of how an album will progress by looking at the lineup and the instruments that they will play. For Ka-Spel, it includes 'voice, keyboards, devices, acoustic things, broken things.' I have enjoyed the Legendary Pink Dots for over 15 years, but had not picked up as much of Ka-Spel's solo work. That changed when I got the latest package from Beta-lactam Ring Records (along with some more LPD stuff which will be reviewed shortly). First off, there is no doubt that the LPD influence is alive and well, which is understandable. However, Ka-Spel manages to put his own stamp on these recordings that keep the music distinct. Stylistically, this is much more sparse than the lush wall of sound often found in LPD, and has a bit more of an experimental feel to it. 'The Beast With 6 Fingers,' for example, is slow with an almost jazzy feel to it, with quiet instrumentation. It also features the memorable line, 'So jerks like me can rant and rave and call it art.' 'The Twisting Vines in Your Sick Mind' is noisy with an experimental vibe to it. If you were wondering where those broken things were that he would be playing, I think we found them. According to the liner notes, an earlier interpretation of "Kill it" appears on Cevin Key's album "Ghost in each Room" under the title "A Certain Stukey". It states that 'Things conclude tragically there too.' It is difficult to decipher some of the lyrics as the voices are sometimes distorted, but you get the sense that it has a woman insisting that a reluctant Ka-Spel 'kill it,' which she repeats many times throughout. Evcentually, Ka-Spel takes this to idea to a larger sector of humanity, describing marching in the streets with the same refrain of 'kill it.' Oddly enough, there is, at the end, what appears to be an outtake of Ka-Spel coaching the woman on how to say 'kill it,' which takes the listener behind the music. Overall, if you are looking for a more experimental version of LPD, you will very much enjoy this album. Even if you are not into LPD, however, this stands well on its own. This album weighs in at around 61 minutes.

Voice of Eye: The Portland Improvisations

 Posted by eskaton   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 15 2011
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Artist: Voice of Eye (@)
Title: The Portland Improvisations
Format: CD
Label: Conundrum
Rated: *****
In the last batch I received from ChainDLK, I reviewed Voice of Eye's collaboration with Nux Vomica. Seems like Voice of Eye has been busy, because here is another disc for your listening pleasure. According to their website, this recording took place in August of 2009 when Soriah invited Voice of Eye to play for his Atlan CD release party in Portland, Oregon. 'Scouring Soriah's house for instruments, they commandeered some unfamiliar and handmade devices to play with. The result is The Portland Improvisations, where Voice of Eye are at their most raw and unadorned.' There are three improvisations, although in practice, there are only two, since 'Improvisation II: Valles Marineris' is only 19 seconds long and seamlessly blends in to the third track. In short, this is over 42 minutes of improvisation that create a wonderful atmosphere. Most bands wish they could create something this complex after hours in the studio. According to the case, 'all sounds herein are acoustic in origin.' Of course that does not mean that they stay that way. Everything seems processed, giving the listener the effect of listening to everything in a cavern full of echoes and reverb. Chimes, strings, ethnic percussion, and who knows what are mixed together to create a cohesive, dreamlike whole. The bonus track, 'The End of All Things,' is a studio recording about the loss of a hard drive. Stylistically it is a bit different from the other tracks, with a bit harsher edge. If the preceding tracks can be thought of as the dream, then this is the nightmare, with its ominous sawtooth waves and dissonance. Not bad, but I really preferred the improvisations. This disc is limited to 500 copies, so you will want to pick this up before it is gone. This disc weighs in at around 55 minutes.

The Oratory of Divine Love: s/t

 Posted by eskaton   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 15 2011
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Artist: The Oratory of Divine Love
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Cohort Records (@)
Rated: *****
I had not heard of this project, but the name of the project is certainly interesting. Evidently this is a reissue of a release originally put out by EE Tapes. The best way to describe this is sound collage. In 'Cur Deus,' random bursts of sound punctuate the almost calming wall of noise. This is not shrill noise, but rather the noise of a crowded place, the chatter of everyone around you. Some samples make their presence known (Rolling Stones' 'Satisfaction,' for example) over the din. The rest of the album follows in a similar fashion (minus the Rolling Stones). This is music for schizophrenia, with voices emerging at times only to become submerged again before you have completely recognized what they are saying. Electronic bleeps and high pitched squalls straight out of a 1950s science fiction movie punctuate the ambient noise. At times there are moments of coherence, as with the repetitive synth melody in 'Benedictus.' Overall this is a fun listen, although at times some of the elements are repeated a bit too much for my taste. If you like Nurse With Wound's cut up material, this may be worth checking out. This album weighs in at around 61 minutes.


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