Music Reviews



mingo: the once and future world

 Posted by Tongue Muzzle   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Feb 23 2006
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Artist: mingo (@)
Title: the once and future world
Format: CD
Label: Helmet Room Recordings (@)
Rated: *****
"the once and future world" is a brilliant title for an absolutely engaging instrumental release. The music is just as pondering, dark and beautiful as the title of the CD would suggest. Lush textures and melodies accompanied by faint and distance rhythms. The average track length is just long enough to put you into a comfortable trance-like state without over staying it's welcome. The CD packaging is more utilitarian than anything, offering little more than extremely minimalistic (though appropriate) art, a track list, credits and absolutely no information on "mingo" himself. Produced extremely well and an absolute joy to listen to. Stand out track: "time turned new".

AGF.3 + SUE.C: Mini Movies

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Feb 23 2006
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Artist: AGF.3 + SUE.C (@)
Title: Mini Movies
Format: CD
Label: Asphodel (@)
Rated: *****
Agf.3 and Sue.C are two girls, the first one coming from Germany and the latter from USA: AGF aka Antye Greie calls herself e-poetess or powerful poemproducer. She works mainly as a vocalist, musician, producer. Since 1996 permanently based in Berlin she was born and raised in East Germany. She developed an early interest for music and poetry and philosophy and recently she is been exploring speech and spoken word into electronic music. Sue Costabile is a video artist/photographer and she works mainly in live improvisational settings. In the past she collaborated with Joshua Kit Clayton, Wobbly, Sutekh, Luc Ferrari, Morton Subotnick, Vladislav Delay, Naut Humon and many other people. MINI MOVIES is their latest project that is divided in two parts: visual (with the release of a DVD) and audio (with the release of the CD I'm reviewing). The DVD contains a collection of shorts, alternate soundtracks, subtitles, an interview and making of. Filmed in New York, Long Island, Berlin, London, San Francisco and elsewhere, it is a travel diary that explore connections, within humans and within facts. The CD contains nineteen electro poems which represent a little story of two people. Each track is a little moment that describe the feelings of the characters. See for example an excerpt of the writing that tells their story: "he continues traveling and departing and the optimistic dreaming of white marzipan and then as soon as he steps off the train starts to feel suddenly unconfident (disaster) expecting the worst and scary things to happen (presentiment) and when he arrives in geneva and his girl friend doesn't hang out with him and is real mean...". The tracks linked to the writing excerpt are "Everybody is a disaster" and the following, "Presentiment". Musically the duo take inspiration from ambient, jazz and experimental minimal electronic. In this way the nineteen tracks sound like little personal moments where the ambience sound take form and tell a story. It's like the walls of a room would be capable of talking about everything they saw: about all the human desperation and about all the human weaknesses. The recitative vocals duet with complex sound structures song shaped, creating sound sculptures that sometimes need a visual counterpart to be fully appreciated.

FEU FOLLET : toi et le son

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 22 2006
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Artist: FEU FOLLET
Title: toi et le son
Format: CD
Label: Einzeleinheit (@)
Rated: *****
Tobias Fischer (that's the man behind the moniker Feu Follet) put out a two suite cd that should be interesting for all those who love projects out on Taalem or Mystery Sea. "Toi et le son" makes me think to musician like Amon, Cria Cuervos and above all Asmus Tietchens even if Feu Follet is more melodic and...can i say "new age"? (and above all less dark than the the musician I've mentioned), but that's the picture. the front cover describes perfectly what you're gonna experience during the half an hour listening of this: sit down, relax your muscles and close your eyes. The music of Tobias Fisher is really crepuscolar but not yet dark, it evokes icy landscape beaten by the weak light of the northern sun. I imagine that many of you will be complaining about the "new age" definition, but it's mainly referred to the biological evolution of the sounds and to the fact it's a relaxing listning but don't take it too litterally. Feu Follet is a good cd that probably sticks to tight to the sound you would expect from a record like that, but after all that's the problem of many artist of the genre. I've listened to this record while working and while reding and the effect is damn relazing, everything becomes slow and you sink in it turns into an amniotic bath. Softest Nurse With Wund are behind the door.

HAWAII8 : self-titled

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Feb 22 2006
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Artist: HAWAII8 (@)
Title: self-titled
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Stuprobrucio (@)
Rated: *****
A good two song release with an early isolationist approach, this project coming from Italy respects strictly the idea of the early isolationist-post-shoegaze musicians. The sounds emerging from the fog made of distant reverbs and wide renge delays are not dark and not even obsessive, the idea is much closer to the music of Main, Aura and also to the Kranky's cult combo Stars of the lid. Speaking about the last comparison I'd say the taste for that avant texan psychedelia married with shoegazing reverbed pools of harmony is more or less similar to that of mr McBride. While listening this two tracks I got the impression it tends to get a bit boring but honestly it's the same impression I've had with some Windy and Carl relases and also with Dead Texan or Growing; Hawaii8 is definitely good above all considering that's a self produced cdr. I think the next step for many musicians obsessed with that sort of Kranky-sound is to go beyond the mere melodic-drone concept and to start working on structures and arrangements (Godpseed You Black Emperor) or with a "concretization" (what a neologism...I hope you get it) of the sound (like in many field recording -melodic releases). Good.

BIAS!: bias!

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Feb 21 2006
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Artist: BIAS!
Title: bias!
Format: 3" MiniCD
Label: Wallace (@)
Rated: *****
I think that's the last chapter of the 3" mailin' series of Wallace and features again Xabier Iriondo from Afterhours, A Short Apnea, Uncode Duello and Olivier Manchion from Permanent Fatal Error and Ulan Bator. What should you expect from such an pair? Yes, the answer is: some psychedelia with an eye looking at the past while the other is watching straight at the twilight. The most of the track are fragmented but yet melodical trippy ballads. The acoustic guitar is the main weapon, but you can bet there's a "controlled" friendly fire of other instruments from keyboards to electronics. The oniric element is strong as fuck but that's something I was expecting since at last all of the projects involving these two guys have this basic seventies-melodic-trance aura. While some songs drives you gently to a comfortable landing in the dreamland (profumo di un aria), some other compositions have a weird krautesque style that may leave you dazzled and confused (solitaire duo). If it was not for the consistent differences I'd recommend this 3" mcd to those who loved Thuston Moore, Lee Ranaldo and co. while crossing their "we're freak-heads but yet melodic" period. This work's not so far from that of Mattia Coletti just came out on the same label, above all the atmosphere idea is similar but this one's much more "deviated". Bias! Doesn't betray the expectations: stony but yet melodic.


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