Music Reviews



Stefano Panunzi: Timelines

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
 Edit (2451)
Jan 19 2006
cover
Artist: Stefano Panunzi (@)
Title: Timelines
Format: CD
Label: RED (@)
Distributor: S{d (Silenzio distribuzione)
Rated: *****

BUY from  BUY NOW from CD BABY (CDBaby.com)
Italian keyboard player, composer and producer Stefano Panunzi is not one who does things half way: disregarding all the constraints and restraints that a place like Italy puts on musicians' ability to play good music, he put together a great debut record (tracked between Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and Japan and mixed/mastered in Italy) that looks, feels and sounds a lot more mature than what most debut records usually do.The eleven tracks of "Timelines" deliver a thick load of progressive influences blended in with electronica, downtempo, rock and jazz that fans of David Sylvian, Japan, Jansen, Barbieri & Karn, King Crimson, Mark Isham, Porcupine Tree, No Man, Marco Polo, Indigo Falls etc will surely appreciate. What sets this album apart is the fact that for almost every band I just mentioned there is a special guest appearance of one of thier members: Mick Karn (Japan, Rain Three Crow) kicks in the high gear on several songs of the album with his round, funky and remarkeably fusion extraordinary bass playing; Gavin Harrison's (Dizrhytmia, Porcupine Tree, Mick Karn) elegant drumming spices things up and locks in with Karn's performance; Haco (Happines Proof, Hoahio, Kam-pas-nel-la, Mescaline Go-Go, After Dinner, Guigou Chenevier) adds a sweet and soft female touch with her sensual Bjork-ish vocals; Peter Chilvers (No Man, A Marble Calm, Bowness/Chilvers, Henry Fool, Darkroom, Alias Grace) adds his string textures to a dreamy and ethereal track; Mike Applebaum (Randy Brecker, Stan Getz, Gil Evans, Leonard Bernstein, Ennio Morricone, Ivano Fossati) delivers a reverberated, moody, relaxed, rapturing, genuinely british-sounding flugelhorn performance; Sandra O'Neill (Alias Grace, A Marble Calm, Bernard Hoskin) and her vocal qualities take the opening track to the poppiest place the record goes to; Markus Reuter (Centrozoon, Europa String Choir, Pat Mastellotto), who readers of Chain D.L.K. are quite familiar with because of his amazing work with Centrozoon reviewed on these pages, plays his warr guitar (a touch-style instrument that very few play or know how to play). In addition to all the international guests, Panunzi recruited some of the finest locals, such as: Nicola Alesini (Glen Velez, Hans Joachim Roedelius, David Sylvian, Roger Eno, David Thorn, Harold Budd, Steve Jansen, Richard Barbieri), who delivers a deep clarinet (and answering sax) performance that really reaches new heights when coupled with Stefano's intense and nostalgic keyboard playing; Daniele Iacono (Jovanotti, Tiromancino, Ron, Paola Turci, Niccolò Fabi, Aladnah, Daniele Groff) plays drums on a few tracks; and Giacomo Anselmi (Antonello Salis, Dario Deidda, Nuova Tribù Zulù) enriches the opening track with some good old acoustic guitar strumming and electric riffs as well. The list goes on and on: Fabio Fraschini, Nicola Lori (bass); Angelo Strizzi, Giampaolo Rao, Diego Mancini (drums), Giancarlo Erra, Nicola Lori (guitars); Rima (spoken voice); Laura Pierazzuoli (cello).It's very rare to find so much talent in one record, but Stefano Panunzi decidedly and pretty much single-handednly (no pun intended!) delivered a great-sounding, refined, sophisticated and very engaging album, the quality of which is truly amazing and impressive, and will hopefully instantly place Stefano Panunzi in the high-fly zone.

RANT: seumsund / sundseum

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
 Edit (2450)
Jan 19 2006
image not
available
anymore
Artist: RANT
Title: seumsund / sundseum
Format: CD
Label: Schraum (@)
Rated: *****
Judging from the website I've thought that probably Schraum is mainly focused on post(?)-jazzist coming from Berlin and if that's true, Rant fits in the mold. A guitar and a drumkit taking over on the most of the tracks and sure, the acoustic "shape" of the sound design is respected has it requires. It's great since I imagine most of the people reading "jazz" thinks of a cascade of notes, scales played at 300 bpm, but no way! Rant are located somewhere else. This duo works patiently on simple melodies but also on abstract atmospheres (Nur hier nicht is a good example of it). Slowed down and relaxed, if this music was a bit slower I could also dare to say it brings to mind the style of Loren Mazzacane Connors, but as I've said that's not "american music". Melodic, jazzy and abstract, right? I've heard somebody calls it "cool" and why not?! Let's say it can be cool but with a soft indie-rock attitude...hey!?!...Indie-rock? Jazz? Abstract? Ok, I'll try to describe the cocktail by saying Mazzacane Connors has joined the ranks of Bedhead, they all went jazzy and went for a solitary lane that every once in a while gets crossed by Jeff Muller before June of '44 became more fusion. Winter melancholia for winter snapshots.

KOJI ASANO: Rabbit room reservation center

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
 Edit (2443)
Jan 16 2006
image not
available
anymore
Artist: KOJI ASANO (@)
Title: Rabbit room reservation center
Format: CD
Label: Asano productions (@)
Rated: *****
While I'm reviewing this as "the last recording of Koji Asano of the year", a new one is gonna be out by the end of the week, just to say that the brain cells of this japanese probably have no rest!. I know "hyper active" and "hyper prolific" are not always followed by "high standard", but Asano is the midst of his golden age, lately it seems like he has the "Midas' touch" or to quote the dear ol' Bad Brains: "the Supertouch". I think the main instrument manipulated on this recording is a big japanese bell (or something similar), those bell-modulations overwhelming the air during the listening from the very beginning give a religious/meditative atmosphere to the three (long) tracks. An all eastern calm gets twisted and redefined thru electronics and you're warned the state of trance is just behind the door. To say it all I think this one of the most relaxing record I've heard lately, ok, sometimes Asano plays a bit too much on each song, but the serialist/minimalist intention would revive the horniest dreams of Reich and Riley. I still can't understand if this "furious japanese" is getting the attention he deserves, but if the word quality still means something: I'm sure he will.

BELONG: October language

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
 Edit (2441)
Jan 15 2006
image not
available
anymore
Artist: BELONG
Title: October language
Format: CD
Label: Carpark (@)
Rated: *****
His name is Turk Dietrich, he collaborated with Telefon Tel Aviv and with Nine Inch Nail (he remixed "the frail"), therefore I think that's enough to have your attention, isn't it?!. Can you imagine a post-Kranky sound mixed with a big imprint of My Bloody Valentine? C'mon it's not so hard and I think they go pretty well together. Warm pastiches imbued in distortion, but here comes the main shoegaze factor: the music sounds like it's coming from far away. Fading images of fields in a sun bath?! But for it may be contradictory these fields look in the middle of a winter dawn. If you're into quiet droning and soft psychedelia probably Belong "has it!" (whatever it is). Melancholic music for a daydream, can you picture the traffic of a big town moving in slow motion?. Dietrich is without any doubt refined and even while molding the structure of these apparently shapeless tracks, he never stretches everything too much. The shoegaze comparison describes vividly the lowest common denominator of the majority of the tracks. Sometimes I've had the impression I was listening to the droned/electronic reincarnation of Swervedriver (that to me it's enough to justify the order of this cd). Sweet like a sugar cane and diluted like plankton into the depth of the sea: indie-rockers and electronic-elitists it's time to sacrifice your money pigs.

ANDREW COLEMAN: Tony Alva's Hair

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
 Edit (2438)
Jan 12 2006
cover
Artist: ANDREW COLEMAN (@)
Title: Tony Alva's Hair
Format: CD
Label: Cocosolidciti (@)
Rated: *****
Titled after the 70's skateboard legend Tony Alva, the new Andrew Coleman album "Tony Alva's hair" is a mixture of ambient sounds, hip hop / break beat rhythms and modern classical music structure. Also active with the Animals on Wheels’ moniker, Coleman collaborated with Dose One’ of Anticon’ outfit cLOUDDEAD’ on the track "Not a speculation". The result is a particular hip hop track which sees Dose One rapping on the jazzy / ambient / dub background created by Coleman. Each track has got its peculiarity: for example "Finger tip control" starts as a piano suite just to find rhythm thanks to a break beat tempo and recruiting oriental melodies on its way to the end. Even if every track has got a different approach to melody or rhythm there is always a certain melancholic sense created by the atmospheres: it's like there's always something in suspension or like there is something that is still to come and that will break free into the track and it never arrives. My favorite ones are "Rain and dogs" (where you can find a beautiful piano and no rhythms), "Not a speculation" and "Miles won't answer". To my ear sometimes the tracks sound too clean and this could make the album result as a good style exercise while with some wilderness here and there could help emphasize the geniality of the composer.


Search All Reviews:
[ Advanced Search ]

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