Music Reviews

Artist: Concise feat. Flaque (@)
Title: Ingénue
Format: CD
Label: Wycombe Music (@)
Distributor: Nova Media
Rated: *****
Another goody I received several months before and which was well hidden under my huge heap of still-not-reviewed releases ' again, I am very sorry for these awful delays. This full-length album is sort of a surprise, as I was eagerly awaiting new stuff to listen from Flaque. This modern-IDM/Electronica-project has been quite too long in hiatus after the excellent debut 'Mindscapes' (also released by Wycombe Music...), which has been one out of three parts of the last Concise box-set release 'Revive'.
Also Concise, featuring the compelling vocal performance by the Austrian female singer Katrin Segert, stands for subtle Electronica music with demanding arrangements and abstract sound designs. Both projects, Flaque and Concise, have additionally collaborated in the past, not only with the 'Revice' ' CD box-set. The mutual course started somewhere in 2006, when Concise released their 'The Power Of Love'-MCD, which included a remix of Flaque of this remarkable Frankie Goes To Hollywood classic hit song.
Now both projects have united again, but there is a strictly separation of the track listing on this new album available. Concise, meanwhile grown to 4 official band members in its formation, are starting here with the first seven tracks providing us an attractive form of Synthpop-Electronica, which picks up here and there glimpses of different influences like House, Jazz and Experimental. The Electronica elements installed here draw intentionally relations to the kind, which can be discovered with the label comrade High Wycombe. That shouldn't wonder you, since the High Wycombe-mastermind Christian Grass is next to Katrin Segert the founding member of Concise and responsible for the Electronica components. Christian's sounds are as expected very mechanical, cold-sounding, but crystal-clear mixed and tasteful installed, so it is quite enjoyable to listen him creating and placing one or another yet unheard sound idea.
Katrin's warm-sounding vocals are of course out of any doubts or discussions; she offers the 'human' factor and provides the optimal contrast in the sound environment of Concise. Best track, because the most accessible, is 'Voyager', which follows a clear song structure and catchy elements to remain into the ear-channel of their audience already after the first listen.
Flaque invades the scenario starting track 8, 'Reflections', and the influence of Florian Ziller is recognizable from the very tone. Flaque's talent fits pretty much to those high prolific artists of the Tympanik Audio label, who are capable to produce compare IDM/Ambient/Electronica-music, such as Geomatic, Candle Nine, or the Swiss Stendeck. Opulent and moody synth-layers, experimental rhythms and subtle environmental/field recordings thrown into the mix are the trademarks of Florian's music. The layered programming of Florian then turns out to be the leading element of the 7 minutes clocking masterpiece 'Reflections', which turns out to be the purest audio entertainment. Florian continues to add his skilful arrangements on the following tracks, maybe a bit lesser accessible than on 'Reflections', but still intensely enough to amaze and satisfy the listener.
If it sounded initially like a contrast, to let these talented musicians unite their shills, works out to be a matured, quality Electronica album. I don't know, if it's allowed to ask for, but: when will they unite again to produce the follow-up album to 'Ingénue'?

John Zorn: Interzone

 Posted by Mike V. (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Jun 17 2011
Artist: John Zorn
Title: Interzone
Format: CD
Label: Tzadik
Distributor: Amazon
Rated: *****
A statement not often heard in regards to Tzadik releases: this is one of the most wholesome musical experiences audible on the label. Even if you aren't a Burroughs devotee but enjoy Zorn, you'll enjoy this one.
The album actually covers a huge array of aesthetic directions, drawing from a portion of the Masada band but also delving into some unprecedented sonic art territories. As to be expected, it's all virtuosic all the time, but one thing to note is how organic and naturally flowing the entire album is. In a seamless way, it crosses the borders of free jazz, ambient, sound design and Zorn's trademark genre "..?" in a single pass.

Featured personnel: Zorn (sax), Medeski (keys), Ribot (guitar), Dunn (basses), Baptista (percussion), Mori (electronics), Wollese (the rest). Stellar performances. And huge friggin props to Chippy for another speechlessly inspiring graphic design package. This alone validates picking up the disc over the mp3s. Words cannot do her work any justice.

A thing to note about reviewing this album. It can't really be captured accurately in less than a 10 minute verbal diatribe at the very least- do yourself a favor and pull up some excerpts online if at all curious. This is a very real journey that is very welcome in this age of single track experiences.

In the meantime, there are three Interzones, each serving a different purpose upon arrival and all of which are musical journeys unto themselves. Tzadik continues to climb the mountain of ingenuity, and I cannot recommend this highly enough.

MANNI DEE: Antidote

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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May 23 2011
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Title: Antidote
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Vermin Street
Rated: *****
Coming from Brighton, UK, Manni Dee is releasing his latest single for Vermin Street. The EP contains two original tunes titled "Antidote" and "Universal symphony". The first one mixes Nintendo games bleeps with nice melodies, breaks and sparse vocal samples. The second ones has a laid back attitude thanks to mid tempo breaks and sci-fi vocal samples. Bleeps and melodies blend nicely creating, as for the first one, a cinematic atmosphere. The EP contains also two remixes of "Antidote" (Alby D Cheecky, Manni Dee's studio partner, turned the original tune into a dub/break number with a bit of experimental attitude and Rotterdam's Halp made of it a bleeping techno atmospheric track) and one of "Universal symphony" (now sounding two step and bouncing thanks to Moscow's Pixelord). Nice...

Mollono.Bass: My Hidden Playground

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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May 22 2011
Artist: Mollono.Bass
Title: My Hidden Playground
Format: CD
Label: Acker Records (@)
Distributor: Kompakt
Rated: *****
The debut-album by Mollono.Bass aka Molle getting the support of many other talented techno producers such as Richie Hawtin, Super Flu, Toni Rios, Stehpan Bozin, Phonique and Afrilounge, his environment-influenced hidden playground, whereas the toys are both digital and instrumental sounds chiseling and embossing malleable and solid tech-house rhythmical lines, smells of wet deadwood, soaked grass, mackintosh spattered with mud, first pollens and even antihistamine nasal spray for allergic rhinites, maybe as some reversed claps in tracks such as the flimsy Beyond The Lake sounds like sneezing, which looks like stifled in the nice experiments on the vocals by Ginger of the initial In The Meadow! Jokes apart, this recording by one of the founder of the quartet Kombinat100, who has chosen his own firstly created imprint, Acker Records, for this nice issue, shows an original approach to electronic dance patterns off, not only through the integration of real instruments (in particular the guitar by Jorg Schwenzer as well saxophones, trumpets and piano resurfacing in more house-loungey tracks such as In The Middle Of The Park or Under The Sun) but mainly by the attempt at enlivening electronic sounds - for instance in the previously mentioned Under The Sun, you could listen to a sort of "pan-fried" blow looking like the slow burning of the skin cells under a tropical sun whereas in tracks such as After The Rain or Deep In the Forest, sounds blended together in an enjoyable togetherness reflecting the dynamic swarming of a natural setting -. The moments when electronic uplifting sounds are played together with guitars, ideally bridging imaginary mental world with the organic one - acting as a a sort of bridoon for excessively parabolic mental trips! - and those ones when you could perceive some gipsy music influences (In The Meadow, The Smiling Shaman and The Owl featuring an owl!) some listeners who already approached to Mollono.Bass releases such as Die Liebe or Brummelhorn intercepted, are definitively my favourite ones. I'd say the wintry spring bursting into Mollono.Bass' sound machines could amplify your desire for summer.

JUPIT3R: Zipperumpazoo

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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May 08 2011
Artist: JUPIT3R
Title: Zipperumpazoo
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Vermin Street
Distributor: Additech
Rated: *****
Inspired by a 1970's children's book, ZIPPERUMPAZOO is the latest Jupit3r's release. The release contains five new tracks and four remixes of the main track reworked by Ruff Hauser (he did a powerful dubstep mix), Stephan Jacobs (dubstep and electro robotic leads are the main elements of his remix), Sugarpill (breakbeat and dubstep with fast arpeggios and some stop and go are his formula), and Quade syncopated breaks and dub bass lines are the core of this remix). The original tune is a great powerful robotic electro track with break vocal samples. "Point of you" is a electro dub tune with apocalyptic atmospheres. "Lumis on the moon" has a dubstep rhythmic section with the add of distorted monster syth samples. "Lazy" sounds like a distorted remix of an hip hop hit. "This is on" closes the EP with a mix of dubstep and cinematic robotic atmospheres. Nice one!

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