Music Reviews



Cooly G: Hold Me

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Mar 01 2014
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Artist: Cooly G
Title: Hold Me
Format: 12"
Label: Hyperdub (@)
Rated: *****
The sensuality of Brixton-based singer, rapper, producer and dj (and semi-professional footballer!) Merrisa Campbell aka Cooly G emanates from her external appearance, her voice, but above all (...and this is what really matters) her stylistical make-up. It exploded on her recent album "Playin' Me" and seems to gush from this tidbit as well: even if it sounds less vocal focused, "Hold Me" keeps Cooly G's followers hot by three amazing tracks, where her voice got agglutinated to very captivating sonic solutions. The smoky atmosphere of the title track rest on subcutaneous basslines, soft electronic scalding, elegant dubbed rhythmical patterns; the following "Oi Dirty", where Scratcha DVA's wonky imprint sounds quite clear, focuses on amazing smidgens of flexible basslines and minor percussive surgery on sizzling breaks, while "Molly" - the only one with no vocals at all - gradually browns a seemingly static house grid by rising saturations of acid-synths, swishing discharges and a one-note bass kick. Great bass-driven hocus-pocus!

Lagowski: Redesine +

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Feb 27 2014
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Artist: Lagowski
Title: Redesine +
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
This new album from Andrew Lagowski marks the return, after more ambient-oriented projects, to territories admittedly related to 90s IDM and techno. So the classic form related to well known warp artist like Autechre or LFO resonate in the tracks of this album. Esthetically speaking, it's not something new but, in this case, the important question is if the form is well constructed and enjoyable from the club perspective and the goal is achieved.
The album is divided in two parts: the first one is the proper 'Redesine' album where all tracks are constructed in an almost classical IDM mode: the juxtaposition of a complex dance beat, a bass line, a soundscape and a sort of loop in synch with the beat. From the lyric intro of 'Skylanes V.8' to the rhythm driven samples of 'Binary Wave Rider', from the warp-influenced tunes like 'Carpenter V.9' and 'Urxeye' to more techno oriented tracks like 'They Follow You Everywhere (Vanilla Mix)' or 'Vocal Impulse Test' this part is enjoyable as it's carefully produced and it escapes the cliches of the genre.
The second part '+' is the reissue bonus and is composed by four tracks: 'Carpenter V.1' constructed as a long synth introduction to a final part constructed upon a drum'n bass pattern. 'SL6' based upon a rhythmic synth line. 'From Without V.13' an almost synth pop track without vocals and 'Raj Deep (3rd Level)' revealing EBM influences.
Even if the first part is perhaps more catchy for the dance floor, the second is more courageous in search for a path untaken i.e, a personal musical form. Almost recommended for EAI fans and nice for everyone else.
Feb 26 2014
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Artist: Atom™
Title: Ich Bin Meine Maschine
Format: 12"
Label: Raster-Noton (@)
Rated: *****
If you try to break a block of diamond into small pieces, you cannot modify its intrinsic preciousness, and little sonic pearl could be considered as a brilliant, which has been cut by masterful chiseler from a giant diamond, the excellent album "HD", a (post-modern? retro-futuristic) magmatic flowe over modernity and a sort of bittersweet parody of mktg-pop logics that Uwe Schmidt aka Atom HD recently flung on an increasingly conforming music market. The sublty kraftwerkian tribute-track "Ich bin meine maschine", whose title is an adjustment of Kraftwerk's "Ich bin eine maschine" inspired by a statement of the cybernetician Heinz Von Foerster, is undoubtedly one of the most representative track of the underlying "policy" of "HD" as well as of the irriverent flair of its author. This little masterpiece got remixed by three talented techno chiseler: the remix coming from techno legend Dave Sumner aka Function is maybe the most mechanical one (it's not a chance that the original vocal line has been reduced to one obsessively repeated word, "maschine"...), even if he gradually phases in by means of mesmerizing smoots and frozen air particles, while the most "club-fitted" version is maybe the opening one from Hamburg dj and producer Alexander Rhida aka Boys Noize, who mostly overlaps the crescendo of the original version, but the most attractive for my eardrums (and maybe the one which is less "danceable") is the reinterpretation of Uwe himself in the guise of Linear (another camouflage!), who manages to mould a sinuous groove from a fistful of almost ethereal sonic murmurs!

Marek X. Marchoff: Funeral Musik fur Jenny Marchoff

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 23 2014
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Artist: Marek X. Marchoff
Title: Funeral Musik fur Jenny Marchoff
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
This release from Marek Marchoff has a personal reason: after his grandmother passed, he spent a couple of hours in studio and recorded this tracks. After 15 years, the result is published and all track titles are related to some places so perhaps it's a suggestion that memories are triggered by them. The musical result are clearly influenced by Coil as it shares a couple of characteristic: his project related content and lack of over-production.
The atmospheric synth 'Thorpe Lea Road' introduces the listener to an hypnotic loop slowly creating a sad mood. The longest track of this album, 'Egham', is opened by a child's voice and a loop above some sparse noises that constitute the first part of the track, after a quiet soundscape the third part is based upon a metallic beat. 'Orylska' is quiet introduction to 'Brixton', a track reminiscent of sci-fi influences. The Coil-esque synth of '27th Street' drowns the listener in moving memories. 'Broadway' is track based upon a deep and sad melodic line. 'Amityville' sounds like a cover of 'Amethyst Deceivers' while 'Chrysler Benz-New Yorker 86', with his noise infrastructure, takes the listener to the void that closes this album.
Evaluating this album is unseparable from the consideration of how the result met his intentions so there's only one thing to say: this is moon musick. Almost recommended.

Marsen Jules: Beautyfear

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Feb 19 2014
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Artist: Marsen Jules (@)
Title: Beautyfear
Format: CD
Label: Oktaf (@)
Rated: *****
A mixture of spleen and vague anxiety sounds like swimming towards intangible depths and anaesthetic abstractions on this new record by Marsen Jules, as if he managed to decode thoughts and worries by a wendersian angel before gushing them into a resounding bucket, whose contents became the varnish of the twelve tracks of this "Beautyfear". As the title could let you easily surmise and according to Jules' own words, "it's an album on the fragility of beauty", whose birthplace had an influence on its sonorities. Masterfully mastered by 12k label head Taylor Deupree, the sequence of synth strings-driven fragile celestial symphonies, which sometimes sound like a distillation of techno with no percussions, dusky thunders, whose menacing halo could surmise some crepuscolar stuff from darkwave or dark ambient fields, reedy aural wavelets and plush sonic fluctations could let you imagine that Marsen abraded a number of suggestions, which got evoked by the place where he created this album during a week stay, a theatre workplace on the top of one hill of Lisbon, where the ideal proximity to a cloudy sky tied in with the panoramic view over that dusty enchanting city. The strange beauty of "Beautyfear" manages to feed expectations on the announced collaboration with Swedish filmmaker Anders Weberg and a forthcoming release that Marsen made after a residence at GRM studuos in Paris, the temple of electroacoustic music, acousmatics and musique concrete.


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