Music Reviews



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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Elaste Vol 3 - Super Motion Disco
Format: CD
Label: Compost
Rated: *****
Dompteur Mooner did it again! Three years after the latest chapter of the ELASTE series he found some other gems of cosmic disco influenced by pop and funk. He found some Italian mix-tapes from the early 1980s (especially those recorded by Beppe Loda and Daniele Baldelli) and packed the album with fourteen tracks that finally would make us proud to be Italian because at that time italo disco ruled the dance floors (at least we found something to be proud of even if unfortunately we always have to refer to our past). The album opens with the funky disco of Queen Samantha's "Take A Chance" (Dompteur Mooner Edit) just to give us the first surprise with Eddy Trauba & M M Greco "Maccaroni Radio', an upbeat tune that recalled me the early new wave electronic of Alexander Robotnick stuff mixed with dance. Moebius with "Urth' mix spacey sounds with funky bass lines while the following Riccardo Cioni & D.J.F.T. Band bring "Fog', a track perfect for a John Carpenter movie (and you know for sure that he did a movie titled "The fog"). Tracks like this influenced Steve Moore, Antoni Maiovvi and Gatekeeper (people that I suggest you to check). Pop wave is back with Nacht Und Nebel's "Beats Of Love" and it gets a bit more experimental with Tabu's "Allein", a song perfect for Lene Lovich. Great electronic sounds are in with Conrad Und Gregor Schnitzler "The Shark Eats Ice" (Conrad and his son Gregor recorded also an album together titled "Conrad & Sohn" and Gregor collaborated to different records of his dad). Mythos' "Powerslide", take us to the center of space disco with moog sweeps and 70s guitar solos, while Pollyester with "Beuys Boys" with slapped bass guitar and choruses bring us back to memories of 70s disco but adding to it some boost. The Deep Fix with "Time Centre" are here with a robotic song based on organ layers overlaps and filtered drum sounds. Die Gesunden's "Galaxy" mix synth sweeps and upfront delirious vocal performances (a sort of disco wave version of Johnny Rotten). Phantom Band "Neon Man' (Dompteur Mooner Edit) bring back space disco sounds mixed with new wave guitars where a recitative voice guide you through the mysterious atmosphere of the "Neon man with the moonlight tan". The Pool with "Jamaica Running" mix tribal rhythms and basic monophonic synth lines while Key Of Dreams remix Toto's "Africa" giving to it vocoder robotic vocals keeping its characteristic keyboard chords. It sounds like a stripped to the bone version of it with proper singing vocals on its later part. This is it... and if you didn't already checked this serie, I suggest you to do so immediately!
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anymore
Artist: ISA WISS, MARC UNTERNAHRER
Title: sopstock
Format: CD
Label: Creative Sources (@)
Be it the fact the use of the voice is not absolutely secondary or the fact this duo hails from Swiss I couldn't but avoid thinking to Stimmhorn for those who know this incredible swiss musician. Honestly, despite some small and barely forgettable similarities despite the unconventional use of the vocals and the fact the both are coming from the land of the cheese with holes the don't have nothing to share. Isa Wiss quite often uses her voices giving you the idea your experiencing to some strangulated Meredith Monk meets chocking David Moss working in a electro-acoustic context. Unternahrer saxophone instead sometimes obviously deals with half pronounced segmented notes and works for mouth and saliva, but at the same time ventures ??? in ?? playing some real phrases. Tracks like "Cyn" and "Drisp" show what I think is the real potential of the duo when going for a post-jazz dialogue, as I've said I think the most interesting episodes are those where the dynamic duo don't recede into some sort of autistic electro-acoustic solipsism but where they put together what looks like a track, "Gringlion" could be a good example. A dry, simple and good recording help developing a good sound profile thanks to which you can taste the real essence of this pair.
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Artist: MIKE MAJKOWSKI
Title: ink on paper
Format: CD
Label: Creative Sources (@)
Rated: *****
Don't ask me why but during the last years I've made and experience in solo double bass works, this probably the third or fourth release performed with this great instrument I review from the last September. Mike Majkowsky like the other double bass players I've been reviewing so far has the technical skill to caress his instrument right to find its G-spot and following this metaphor now and then they reach the aural orgasm they're looking for. Five different track for many different lengths and techniques, from the finger picked up and down of "pizzicato" to the bowed breaths of "foam and straw", from the stuttering of "ink and paper" to the quasi-contemporary classic structure of "current". Despite the many colors and tones thrown in the oven by Majkowski I have the impression there's a predominance of high pitched notes and for non-continuative playing, with the last thing I don't mean the tracks are full of stops and goes, I simply wonna say most of the times he opts for fragmented notes played like he's using a sort of morse code even when doing slow rides like in "current". Definitely an interesting release.

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Artist: FATHER MURPHY
Title: no room for the weak
Format: CD
Label: Boring Machines (@)
Rated: *****
Father Murphy were an indie folk band from Italy, now while the years have passed by, the transition is complete, they gradually passed from playing a good and essential American indie rock with reminiscences of Violent Femmes to this dark mixture of lo-fi rock and crepuscular psychedelia. Strange kind of blend as you can imagine and you have to consider they have some really chaotic experimental interludes in the middle of the song that bring you down in this spectral Seventies' atmosphere which characterizes the whole productions. What did they do to complete this metamorphosis? They worked so much on the shape of their sound, they add more reverb, more acoustic noises (bells and cowbells for examples), they reduced structures and some riffs to the minimum it took to give the shape to a song and they painted the whole canvas of black melodies. Sometimes it also of the darkest Doors, Sonics and Stooges amputated of their rock element and obscured by a black cloud. I think if I say it has a strange "garage" aura many may think to garage rock, but it's closer to some of these bands when following some bad trip it's not even that far from some nightly Fuzztones ballads. Sure despite the aesthetic is easy to perceive this band is not just a clone of heroes from the past, but sure they follow the ranks of vintage music. Believe me, they were a really good band but I would have never imagined they could take such a direction. A really nice surprise.
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anymore
Artist: Archon Orchestra
Title: Pong
Format: CD
Label: Shadowplay/ Muzyka Voln/ Monopoly (@)
Rated: *****
The song are constructed using a minimalistic structure: one line is a repetitive motif, the other is a meditative tune for organ. The result is an album beneath religious and videogames aims. The reference for the classic game is relevant for the comprehension of this album.
"Orpheus" is a sort of manifest for this record: a lovely loop for synth and a calm structure for organ, thinking of Terry Riley. "Golconda" is more reminiscent of the renaissance paintings of the cover, a baroque theme for synth. "A stone among stone" is a classic minimalistic tune. "Counterpoint", for converse, looks at the sounds of the pong game because is a repetitive (or dull) theme for synth. "Adagio" is a wonderful theme for piano developed with a clear process in mind and is the best track of the album, worth of a listen. "Canto" is the specular for the synth and "Fantasie" a curious mix of videogames soundtrack and classic music for harp. The last track "Pong" is the titletrack and the most disappointing track an extremely long track that take a videogame motif repeatedly for minutes, boring.
The life of man is short yet purposeless. Full of delusive hopes, yet true sorrows.
This words are written on the rear cover, and are probably humorous in regards of videogames and take another confusion for an album that stay between a good record and a prank. While is repetitive is sometimes disappointing, but when it develops his tunes this album is worth a listen for all minimalistic fans.
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