Music Reviews

Dublicator: Singularity

 Posted by Evangelos   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 19 2011
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Artist: Dublicator
Title: Singularity
Format: CD
Label: ZeECc
Rated: *****
"Singularity is a point in space-time at which gravitational forces cause matter to have infinite density and infinitesimal volume and space and time to become infinitely distorted."
This is the 2nd album by hungarian electronic producer Tamas Olejnik under the Dublicator moniker (he also records as MetaComplex, Antendex, Retax Gorgon, Metaxid and a couple of other-secret-aliases). Released last June on the eclectic french label ZeECc, it contains 10 tracks in which Tamas shows once again his incredible skills on dub techno/deep space sounds. I don't consider myself as an expert in these genres, but i am a dedicated fan of Deepchord and i'm also following closely the excellent echospace [detroit] label, so a record like this one is not an unknown territory for me. And "Singularity" is an album reminiscent of the releases by the aforementionted artist and label, though without any suspicion of copying their sounds. What we have here is an excellent collection of minimal hypnotic tracks, full of deep chords that create beautiful soundscapes mostly thanks to the extended use of reverb and delay techniques. The sound is so rich it surrounds you like a cosmic grid and keeps you captivated until the last track fades out; then, ...lost in space, you start looking for more Dublicator sonic trips (and, thank God, there's also "Spectrum", released almost simultaneously with "Singularity", on another fine french label, Entropy Records, while a new release is on the way-preview it here:
Do yourself the favour and grab a copy of this awesome cd, but hurry up because the edition is limited!

Ian Boddy & Parallel Worlds: Exit Strategy

 Posted by Steve Mecca   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 19 2011
Artist: Ian Boddy & Parallel Worlds (@)
Title: Exit Strategy
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: DiN (@)
Distributor: DiN
Rated: *****
Ian Boddy is a name you should already be familiar with; it's Electronic Music 101 going back to the early 1980s. He runs Something Else music and the DiN label in the UK, and has lots of releases. Parallel Worlds is the project moniker for Bakis Sirros from Greece. The project has released a number of albums in the ambient/dark ambient/electronic vein since 2003 with 32 prior releases on the DiN label. It was likely inevitable that Boddy and Parallel Worlds would collaborate together at some point, and that culminates in 'Exit Strategy' now.

Maybe it's odd that I haven't heard much of Boddy's work before, only bits and pieces I may have used for comparative reference points I've used in other reviews. Parallel Worlds is also unfamiliar to me but as they've collaborated with Alio Die previously, that's a 'thumbs up' credential-wise in my book.

'Exit Strategy' is one spacey piece of ambient electronica in 7 tracks. There is plenty of analogue modular synth on the album and it often has quite a huge sound. From what I gather, Bakis initially provided much of the raw material for the album and Ian sculpted and refined it into the finished product, adding his own touches along the way. The often complex multilayered soundscapes make for fascinating listening with a high replay factor. (You won't get bored after a couple of listenings.) The moods vary considerably in a number of different shades of light and dark, and the percussive elements (when present, which is by no means constant) always seem to be well-integrated with the music. Throughout the deep space ambience there is also a fair amount of melodic content. Boddy's glissando keyboard (first introduced on his 'Slide' album) adds quite a bit to the aural richness of these soundscapes. It could even be described as cinematic, in a Vangelis sort of way. Elements explored here may hearken back decades, but there is no doubt this is modern electronic music, not a retro nostalgia trip. If Tangerine Dream had stuck together and taken this direction, I'd probably still be listening to them. A highly recommended album by two electronic composers who are truly craftsmen, not workmen. The CD is limited to 600 copies, so unless you're planning on doing the download version, you might want to grab it before it's gone.

STATIC: Freedom Of Noise

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Sep 13 2011
Artist: STATIC
Title: Freedom Of Noise
Format: CD
Label: Karaoke Kalk
Rated: *****
Hanno Leichtmann is a Berlin musician who's active with different projects such as Center Of Excellence, Dawn, Denseland, Groupshow, Forest Jackson, etc. FREEDOM OF NOISE is the newest Static album and for this one the personnel was: Hanno Leichtmann (drums and electronics), Axel Dorner (trumpet), Tobias Delius (saxophone) and Clare Cooper (harp) with guest appearances by Christof Kurzmann, Ronald Lippok, Stefan Schneider, Valerie Trebeljahr, Martin Siewert and Justine Electra. Released by Karaoke Kalk, the album contains ten movements which presents a varied mixture of electronica, experimental music with ambient intuitions. Since from the opening "Introduction" the listener is projected into the Static sonic world which is made of minimal loops enriched by orchestral arrangements and ends with harp, sax and guitar improvisations. With "Stubby Fingers", we have vocal and piano loops coupled by cool sax melodies and light metallic rhythmical patterns. It sounds like Tuxedomoon on acid. The main track is a mixture noisy synth analog obsessive track with folk blows arrangements and happy melodic vocals (something similar goes for "The Boy Who Run Into The Sun" but this one is more based on drums and blows). The whole album is in balance from jazz influences, ambient sounds and experimental approaches but with a nice use of melody which allows the listener to really enjoy all the tracks.
Sep 12 2011
Artist: Obtane, Giorgio Gigli, Milton Bradley (@)
Title: The Dark Thoughts Of Fate's Manufacturer
Format: 12"
Label: Zooloft (@)
Distributor: Rubadub
Rated: *****
A record entitled The Dark Thoughts of Fate's Manufacturer should necessarily feature a sinister and obscure sound, but this act by Giorgio Gigli and Obtane displays more than just some gloomy sonic shoddy goods. The narrative set evoked by the title could properly stimulate the imagination of some listener who believes in conspirational theories, but manages to sprinkle this release with magic powder, which give the possibility to contextualize it better. The usage of subterranean industrial sounds (giving the illusion of walking inside a thermal nuclear implant) blindstiched to a sort of visceral rumbling by some perfect bass cuts and a propelling step in the initial "You Can't Hide Yourself" and the disquieting ambient Zooloft guys assembled while remixing a track by Milton Bradley (not the famous toy industrialist, but one man behing the small but interesting label Do Not Resist The Beat, together with Dj Zeal, as well as autheor of the project The End Of All Existence), entitled Escaped From The Dark, reminded to me a sort of mixture between the seminal techno-industrial by Riou Tomita, the most experimental side of acid techno and detroit style, with some other casual cross-reference marks, such as that sort of laser beam/siren in the above-mentioned remix, who's quite close to the one Future Sound Of London used in Accelerator. Good musical food for dystopian stomachs and ears.

Terence Fixmer: Le Terrible EP

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 09 2011
Artist: Terence Fixmer (@)
Title: Le Terrible EP
Format: 12"
Label: Electric Deluxe (@)
Distributor: wordandsound
Rated: *****
Another musical knick-knack coming from Electro Deluxe label is this intriguing EP signed by the notorious Terence Fixmer, a master in injecting that acoustic dose inducing cardiopalmus in the listener. It's very difficult that someone cannot act the part of an escaping prey running away from its pitiless hunter or alternatively the one of a hunter pursuing its dangerous quarry (or as the advertising clip seems to suggest the part of a sexy bomb disposal expert, employed for the defusing of a clocking time bomb), in particular for this kind of releases, consistantly different from Comedy of Menace (especially the second part), whereas Terence's style sounded a little bit smoother than before, maybe for seducing different kind of dancers (even if in my opinion he never felt this necessity). The title-track, Le Terrible, is what I really expected Terence Fixmer should keep on sounding, a series of cutting and clicking storms, able to immediately increase level of adrenaline in your dancing body, which is going to move like haunted by some voodoo necromancer on the catching dynamics. The first track on flipside, Concept C, has been marked by some of his fingerprints, in particular his distinctive distorted bass pulses and the hypnotical transmigration from one side to the other of the sonic space of percussive elements, but he prefers to build a sort of drone-like tunnel, unveiling a more experimental side. The remix of Dance Like Paranoid by Marcell Dettmann has been carefully built, especially the rhythmical pattern and the melody, but sounds nothing but a landslip of the original track. On the digital release, you will always find a more skeletal version of Le Terrible, including just the essential sound scapes (without percussive elements) intended for making easier the mixing during dj sets.

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