Music Reviews



Taiga Remains: Works For Cassette

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
 Edit (8285)
Jun 29 2014
cover
Artist: Taiga Remains
Title: Works For Cassette
Format: 12"
Label: The Helen Scarsdale Agency (@)
Rated: *****
In the act of decanting the five tracks of this collection from tape to vinyl and digital data, James Plotkin wisely kept the tape hiss of the original versions intact, as he understood that it's an essential element of the fascinating aesthetics by Alex Cobb, the guru of Cincinnati-based Students Of Decay and the man behind the curtains of Taiga Remains. This sonic pouring on San Francisco-based label Helen Scarsdale Agency combines a couple of rare releases by Alex under that guise, which already appeared as strictly limited tape editions in 2008: the first one, "Beneath The Weeping Beeches", came out on Matthew Sullivan's tape label Ekhein, where the sweetly sorrowful resins of the initial "Sup Pralad" and the icy thorns of "There's Nothing" seem to get gelled on the dreamlike plains of the entrancing sonic sprouts of "Skin, Leaves"; the second one is "Thereafter", which got formerly released by Mike "Treetops" Pollard's label Arbor, whose two tracks - named after two types of Taiwanese tea ("Winter Tai-Tung" and "Spring-Shan-Lin-Shi") - shows the masterful way Alex manages to generate emotional convections by means of gently layered processed guitars, which phases their radiant heat out. You won't get nauseated while sipping these two cups of psychedelic tea.

Aeoga: Temple Treye

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
 Edit (8283)
Jun 29 2014
cover
Artist: Aeoga (@)
Title: Temple Treye
Format: CD
Label: Aural Hypnox (@)
Rated: *****
The piercing sound of a theremin on the opening track (or I'd better call refer to tracks as "telemorphic sonic formations", as they call them) "Feast Of The Stance" instantly immerses the listener into the hallucinatory sacredness of the listening experience that Finnish duo Aeoga provides on this entrancing release. Its pealing resonances as well as the sepulchral afterglows on the following "Between The Crescent Hooks" seem to evoke the reawakening of dormant supernatural being, whose first yawning got hailed by hypnotical tribal drums, and could mark the resurgence of this project, even if "Temple Treye" was already recorded and performed on live stage in 2006 and got de-iced after eight years of hibernation by Aural Hypnox, the discographic display of the artists of the Helixes collective and their thelemic entities. The menacing opacity of lo-fi synth murmuring and the crystalline tinkling of "Telemorphic Cuts" draws obscure diagrams around listeners before the spooky roaring, the ominous pace and the other-worldy invocations of "Temple Treye" lets distinguish its appalling lineaments, where the vividly sketched ascetic exaltation of this sort of sonic rite becomes blurred on the magnetic soup of "Transparallel Mist" and reveals unexpected phosphorescences on the final "Feast Of Te Trance", the conclusive phase of an unmissable release for lovers of drone-like dark-ambient sonic substances.

France Jobin: The Illusion Of Infinitesimal

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
 Edit (8281)
Jun 28 2014
cover
Artist: France Jobin (@)
Title: The Illusion Of Infinitesimal
Format: CD
Label: Baskaru (@)
Rated: *****
If some sonic diggers accidentally begin to listen to this album by Montreal-based sound installation/artist and minimalist composer France Jobin aka I8U without knowing anything about its conceptual aspect, I'm pretty sure some of them could surmise that a maladroit nipper foolishly forgot to calibrate input controls on mixer while listening the opening track "1/2" where just some delicate frequencies, high beeps (not so different from pure tones for audiometric tests) and thin piercing sounds cross the microscopic holes left by knitted pad-synths which got intentionally mastered at a very low volume and seem to act like a filter for unnecessary and maybe unwanted sonic intrusions. According to a different way of listening the same track, you could imagine it's like an unobtrusive diaphragm between listeners and surrounding world, that you keep on feeling whether you are wearing headphones or you are listening to it from loudspeakers, where just some delicate sonic entities occasionally detach from the above-mentioned stream of frequencies as if "1/2" tries to render moments of temporary partinf from "outer world". Even the only trace of noise on the second part of the suite doesn't get under your skin as it rather resembles the noise of distant engines (a car, a watercraft, a helicopter o maybe a tractor) when you are on a desolate beach at dawn. A similar route between barely audible loops to resurfacing sonic entities has been followed on the other two long-lasting suites: whereas the central track "0" could evoke a peaceful reverie in a countryside farm, this talented Canadian woman pulls the initial pure tones and bleeps out of the sonic sphere before letting that previously almost silenced drone wrap the listener into a warmer embrace on the final "+1". That's a very good rapture in the fertile plot of minimalist ambient.
Jun 23 2014
image not
available
anymore
Artist: Re-DrUm / b°tong
Title: Hush! / Ascending in the Light of an Alien
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
When I was a teenager a split was one of the most common releases as it acts as a presentation of the bands using one of the best feature of the analog medium: the division in sides. So there was an intermezzo, even with autoreverse, of a bunch of seconds of silence that prepared the listener to the other band. In the digital age this is reduced of a cd package that emulates two distinct release: one from russian RE-DRUM and one from swiss B°TONG.
Hush! is the side from ReDrUm and starts with the gentle guitar notes of 'Mute' suddenly colored by the digital filters and resonances creating the noisy soundscape. 'Death Of The Flame' is, instead, an almost classic dark ambient track. 'Sehr Sehr Weit' starts with a bright drone and slowly evolves in quiet track based on small noises until a gentle drone closes this side with found sounds from perhaps a soap. Without any gap there's the sounds of the second side. 'Ascending in the Light of an Alien Sun' from b°tong, that, with 'Vision Of Ineluctable Destiny', almost immediately shows their sound using heavily reverberated voices upon a dark soundscape and this track alternate static parts with noisier one so resulting in an interesting listen. 'The Hierophant Prepares The Candidate' is, instead, besed on a sort of heavily processed field recordings. The evocative soundscape of 'Into The Schwarzchild Radius' closes this release with a sequence of drones and resonance that act as a mirror of the ones used by Re-DrUm.
The most curious tract that I've found in this release is, even if the musical difference of the two projects, this release sounds as a cohesive, and almost complete, album so it's seems as a question about the nature of split album in this age as it seems closer to the releases branded as '2 lp on 1 cd' than a proper split album. So, even if this bands constructed a good release that would owes a critical acclaim, this release is important as it states as a symbol of this time. Something to think about.

Monty Adkins: Rift Patterns

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
 Edit (8271)
Jun 22 2014
cover
Artist: Monty Adkins
Title: Rift Patterns
Format: Download + iBook
Label: Audiobulb (@)
Rated: *****
A couple of weeks ago, we introduced the enchanting suite "Residual Forms" - you can download it for free on Cronica website - by the appreciated composer Monty Adkins, whose sonic poetics has heavily influenced by the experimental method of investigation around urban environments, known as psychogeography, which was originally developed by Lettrism and precisely defined by Guy Debord as "the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, whether consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behaviour of individuals". On this new album for British label Audiobulb, who seems to prefer the definition that Wisconsin-based freelance writer and musician Joseph Hart gave on an article for Utne Reader ("'a whole toy box full of playful, inventive strategies for exploring cities '¦ just about anything that takes pedestrians off their predictable paths and jolts them into a new awareness of the urban landscape.'), Professor Monty keeps on focusing on "derive" or "drift", the main technique of "psychogeographists", by unrolling deeply emotional clumps of electric interferences, organic clusters, warm and sometimes gloomy piano melodies, tonal dissipations and smudges over eight intense tracks which seem to draw an arc-shaped emotional blueprint from the opening "Tender Light Rising" to the final "Tender Light Falling" where listeners could costrue as a proper soulmapping rather than a psychogeographic implementation. Monty decided to making this album more meaningful by dragging the writer Deborah Templeton, video artist Jason Payne and photographer and graphic designer Stephen Harvey in and their collaborative feedback/back-propagations to Monty's music resulted into an amazing interactive iBook which is going to be sold together with the enhanced 16bit or 24bit digital versions of the release.


Search All Reviews:
[ Advanced Search ]

Chain D.L.K. design by Marc Urselli
Suffusion WordPress theme by Sayontan Sinha