Thursday, December 20, 2007
LOW-FI SUBTLE ACOUSTIC BEAUTY FROM FLORIDA
ARTIST``````````````IRON & WINE
ALBUM``````````````OUR ENDLESS NUMBERED DAYS
COMPILATION BY VALENTIN
I first heard Iron & Wine on their excellent collaboration album with Calexico called "In The Reins" which i also recommend.
I intentionaly selected this album (not the debut one) because talented songwriter Samuel Beam (the guy with the beard) managed to keep his gorgeous, intimate living room sound while shifting from his home studio production to proffesional studio equipment. While some question this change in sound quality, I only see it as a normal reaction to a massive positive response to his music. Some new band members are added and this can be heard in small enriching details such as sampled Native Indian chants and simple percussion beats in the backround. The most important improvement on this album is Samuel's voice - it is recorded so well that sometimes it seems that he is singing right next to you.
Simple and emotional, this album has that tiny, intimate precision that lots of indie lo-fi bands today search for.
SHORT BIOGRAPHY AND ALBUM INFO:
Iron & Wine is the stage name for one Samuel Beam, a Florida native who made his name by releasing lo-fi tapes in Miami. The name Iron & Wine is taken from a dietary supplement named "Beef Iron & Wine" that he found in a general store while shooting a film.
On Our Endless Numbered Days, the follow-up to 2002's stunningly good Creek Drank the Cradle, the sound of Iron & Wine has changed but the song remains the same. No longer does Sam Beam record his intimate songs in the intimate surroundings of his home. Instead he has made the jump to the recording studio. As a result the record is much cleaner, less cocoon-like, certainly more the product of someone who has become a professional musician and not someone who just records for fun on a four-track. However, all Beam has sacrificed is sound quality. The sound of the record is still very intimate and simple, with very subtle arrangements that leave his voice and lyrics as the focal point. Luckily all the technology in the world can't affect Beam's voice, which still sounds like it comes right from his lips into your ear as if he were an angel perched on your shoulder. His songs are still as strong and memorable as they were on Creek, no drop off whatsoever in quality.
Our Endless Numbered Days is very subdued, thoughtful, melodic, and downright beautiful album and the new sound is more of a progression than a sudden shift in values, production or otherwise. Anyone who found the first album to be wonderful will no doubt feel the same about this one. Heck, you might even like it more.
DOWNLOAD IRON & WINE HERE
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
ONE OF THE MOST TALENTED MULTI-INSTRUMENTALISTS TODAY
ALBUM``````````````A SMALL REPRISE
COMPILATION BY VALENTIN
This is THE ONLY American-patriot-religious-to the heaven and back musican that I like. He is probably one of the most talented younger american musicians today and still has a lot to cover. Enjoy his talent (while it lasts?).
This is my "Best Of" selection. Its not official, just so you dont get confused.
Sufjan Stevens is an American singer-songwriter and musician from Petoskey, Michigan. Many consider Stevens' music to be lyrically focused and instrumentally rich. Lyrically, it often relates to faith and family. Stevens has enjoyed wide critical success in the United States.
He is considered part of the folk revival in indie pop, but his influences are very broad. His music has been likened to electronica and the minimalism of Steve Reich. Stevens originally announced plans to make a concept album for each of the 50 U.S. states, having begun the series with Michigan (2003) and Illinois (2005).
THIS GUY IS ONE OF THE STRANGEST SLEEPTALKERS EVER...
ALBUM````THE DREAM WORLD OF DION McGREGOR
It's sad that a man with such a rare "talent" (curse?) has to be promoted on personal blogs, myspace pages and stupid fan-forums which nobody acctualy visits. In short - Dion McGregor is a very strange man that talks OUTLOUD while asleep.
Dion McGregor dreamt out loud, fully narrating his vivid and often bizarre dreams, which were recorded by his roommate from 1961 to 1967. By his late '30s, McGregor's sleep talking had grown beyond the usual mumblings of somniloquists, he was speaking out loud and clear. McGregor was raised in NYC, but moved to Hollywood after dropping out of college. By 1953, the aspiring song lyricist was back in NYC, collaborating with Bob Cobert (who later scored for the Dark Shadow T.V. series). In 1955, he met Mike Barr, and the two began collaborating exclusively as songwriting partners.
BEAUTIFUL, SLUMBERING COMPOSITIONS
ARTIST``````````````THE DEAD TEXAN
ALBUM``````````````THE DEAD TEXAN
If you like Stars of the Lid as much as I do you should get yourself this fine album. Adam Waltzie (The Dead Texan in question) made only a slight departure from that famous Stars of Lid's drone minimal sound. A bit more guitars here and there and a tiny portion of recognizible voice layers make this album different enough.
A solid, wave riding piece of solo work.
The solo entry from Adam Wiltzie -- best known as one-half of Stars of the Lid -- comes under the nom de rock the Dead Texan and exists as less of a song cycle than an imaginary movie score. Accompanied with a DVD of seven videos made by filmmaker Christina Vantzos only asserts this notion, but Wiltzie's guitar-based art is equally if not better suited to stand on its own. Beautiful, slumbering compositions get peculiar titles like "The 6 Million Dollar Sandwich" and "A Chronicle of Early Failures." If the lush, piano-flushed "La Ballade d'Alain Georges" is the finest of the instrumental tracks, Wiltzie's two intimate vocal pieces (the organ-bolstered "Glenn's Goo" and the ambient shoegazer-ish "The Struggle") are easily the disc's highlights.
ONE OF THE STRANGEST AND MOST BEAUTIFUL ETNO-WORLD RECORDINGS I HAVE
ALBUM``````````````IF I'D BEEN BORN AN EAGLE
One of the strangest world-etno mixes I've heard so far. They sing in their native language (Tuvian) which of course I dont understand but somehow it all sounds warm and familiar. Some people cannot listen to them because at some moments they sound "far out there", somehow "not-human" and "paganistic".
Their themes are uniquely simple but at the same time emotionaly complex experiences of Night and Day, Love and Hate, Human Conversations, Human Desire for Eagle's View of Earth, Surrounding Landscapes and Strange Lights in the Sky (Aurora Borealis).
Instruments and melodies they produce are a mixture of russian, turkish and mongolian folk, buddhist and shamanic throat singing wrapped in the finest western production skills.
The beauty of this album is that there is no avantgarde experimentation (this is straightforward etno music) and yet some songs remind me of some western experimetal-ambient artists. In years after this album, the band started rock-oriented collaborations with a number of western artists and for me - killed everything they made on this epic recording. Fortunately I managed to save this album on some of my oldest mp3 disks so here it is:) This album is probably the most interesting etno-world music on this planet. A must have.
Where they come from:
The republic of Tuva is one of the least known and most curious corners of Russia. The Tuvans are nomadic pastoralists by nature Buddhist and shamanist by religion, Mongolian by cultural heritage, and Turkic by language.
The remote region of Tuva, one of the new countries formed with the dissolution of the U.S.S.R., has produced one of the world's most unusual vocal groups, Huun-Huur-Tu. Masters of the throat singing style of xoomei, in which a vocalist produces two or three notes simultaneously, the group has been warmly by an international following. According to Jazz Times, "a rustic joyousness and unadulterated expresiveness come out of these musicians". Analyzing Huun-Huur-Tu's music, The Chicago Tribune, wrote, 'it is unfamiliar yet very accessible, an other-worldly but deeply spiritual music that is rooted in the sound of nature". Dirty Linen took a similar view, claiming, "this music is both very spiritual and down to earth, grounded in a strong sense of place, yet its appeal is universal." In addition to recording their own albums, the members of Huun-Huur-Tu have contributed their unique vocals to albums and/or performances by Frank Zappa, The Chieftains, Johnny "Guitar" Watson, The Kronos Quartet and L. Shankar and Ry Cooder's soundtrack of the film, Geronimo.
Huun-Huur-Tu's third album shows the group broadening the scope of its music. As the ensemble members themselves point out, there's a great deal more to Tuvan music than throat singing, although it might well be the form that grabs a listener's attention. This is their attempt to show both the historical and contemporary colors of Tuva, with old melodies but also many from the last 30 years that have become a part of the national consciousness. And they also explore the inevitable connections between Russian and Tuvan music. But throughout it all, the rhythm is that of the horse, which is that of Tuva. That's not to say they've made a turn away from their trademark throat singing. It's still here, and still gloriously otherworldly, but at the same time incredibly accessible and completely human, with plenty of passion and all the soul of the best of Memphis.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
KRUSHING BEATS AND SAXOPHONE WASHING. AAARGHHH...
ARTIST`````````````DJ KRUSH & TOSHINORI KONDO
My favourite Krush album and dare I say - his greatest. I consider this to be one of the best and most intimate albums in the entire trip-hop genre (which I generaly disrespect). This is pure instrumental krushingness from Japan's most respected trip-hop duo.
Pure pleasure and a must have.
Anyone who remembers trumpeter Toshinori Kondo's work with such thorny avant-gardists as John Zorn, Derek Bailey, Fred Frith, and Peter Brotzmann's Die Like a Dog Quartet may be a bit taken aback by the extreme accessibility of his collaboration with pioneering turntablist DJ Krush. Much of the music on Ki-OkuKondo's muted trumpet line on "Mu-Getsu" sounds an awful lot like something Chris Botti would play, while the duo's instrumental take on the Bob Marley classic "Sun Is Shining" comes off just a little bit muzak-y. On the other hand, "Ki-Gen" and "Ko-Ku" both find Kondo using synthesized treatments in a way that evokes Jon Hassell's work with Brian Eno, while on the latter DJ Krush layers slightly menacing keyboard washes beneath Kondo's unassuming trumpet lines. This is one of those albums that reveals more with repeated listens; if it sounds too easy at first, listen again -- there's lots of interesting stuff going on beneath what sometimes sounds like a merely pleasant surface.
DOWNLOAD KRUSH HERE
Friday, November 30, 2007
WHAT WE DID ON GRASS...
I agree with this: "XTC was one of the smartest -- and catchiest -- British pop bands to emerge from the punk and new wave explosion of the late '70s. From the tense, jerky riffs of their early singles to the lushly arranged, meticulous pop of their later albums, XTC's music has always been driven by the hook-laden songwriting of guitarist Andy Partridge and bassist Colin Moulding. While popular success has eluded them in both Britain and America, the group has developed a devoted cult following in both countries that remains loyal over two decades after their first records."
Each song is a small gem, marrying sweet, catchy melodies to decidedly adult lyrical themes, from celebrations of love ("Grass") and marriage ("Big Day") to skepticism about maturation ("Earn Enough for Us") and religion ("Dear God"). Moulding's songs complement Partridge's songs better than before, and each writer is at a melodic and lyrical peak, which Rundgren helps convey with his supple production. The result is a pop masterpiece -- an album that has great ambitions and fulfills them with ease. [The initial release of Skylarking didn't feature "Dear God," which was originally the B-side of "Grass." After "Dear God" became an unexpected hit, "Mermaid Smile" was pulled from the album so the hit single could be added.]
DOWNLOAD XTC HERE
NASTY, TRASHED OUT HUSBAND & WIFE
ALBUM`````````````OUT OF BREACH
Angry, bitchy, nasty, freestyle punk-electro husband and wife band spreading hatred and obscene wishes...ummm...tasty.
Unless you're a shady label owner ("Tigerbastard"), an exploitative media land-shark ("Stop Bothering Michael Jackson"), an eBay pirate ("I'm Coming to Get You"), a cowardly DJ ("Like a Little B*tch"), a person who cuts in line at a money-exchange counter ("Extreme"), or a hater ("Haters"), there's no reason to feel truly antagonized by the second album from husband-wife duo Maurice Fulton (instruments, production) and Mutsumi Kanamori (vocals, "body fluids").
DOWNLOAD MU HERE
COVER DESIGN IS BY ME:-) just a little tribute.
YOU WANNA SUPER MOTORIK RIDE?
COMPILATION BY VALENTIN
This band is probably my first aware encounter with the indie post rock fever of the 1990's. I used to listen Stereolab insanely from 1998 till late 2002 - collected all their albums, EP's, singles and live performances and could consider myself being a fan (I hate that word). Many people find them irritating but also - many find them to be brilliant . I find them to be imortant for personal reasons - their "catchiness" and at the same time "alternativness" and "indieness" freed my musical taste (opened my eyes to say it in a kitchy way:) They present a positive, most original underground look on our naive world.
Few days ago I found my long lost Stereolab discography CD and added some missing albums (from 2002 - 2007). Now I present you my personal selection which only I could call "Best of" or "Stereolab's greatest". This selection spans their entire career, except for their first 2 albums which I didnt include because of poor production.
For people who dont know who they are - read the "BASIC BIOGRAPHY" txt below. Enjoy this fine, most influental super-cute and long lasting, seriously independent band.
Called "one of the most fiercely independent and original groups of the Nineties", Stereolab were one of the first bands to be termed "post rock". Their primary musical influence is 1970s krautrock, which they combine with lounge, 1960s pop, and experimental music. They are noted for their heavy use of vintage electronic keyboards, and their sound often overlays a repetitive "motorik" beat with female vocals sung in English or French. Stereolab often incorporate socio-political themes into their lyrics. Some critics say the group's lyrics carry a strong MarxistSurrealist and Situationist cultural and political movements. However, Gane is skeptical of labels such as "Marxist pop", and defends the band against accusations of "sloganeering".
message, and Gane and Sadier admit to being influenced by the
Although many of the band's albums have been underground hits, they have not found larger commercial success. The band were released from their recording contract with Warner Music when Warner's imprint Elektra Records folded. The release was reportedly due to poor record sales, and since then Stereolab's self-owned label, Duophonic Records, has signed a distribution deal with Too Pure. Duophonic holds the copyrights to the band's recordings, and on the label the band have released many limited-edition records.DOWNLOAD STEREOLAB HERE
SHIT. YOU SHOULD BE SCARED
ALBUM`````````````ROCKIN' HORROR DISC
GENRE`````````````EARLY ROCK n' ROLL
This is definetly not the "Ultimate" compilation on this subject but it still carries a lot of fun, romance and most importantly - underground sounds from forgotten artists of that age. Werevolves, zombies, vampires and all sorts of dangerous places and situations are here to scare and entertain your bored ass.
Is Ultimate 50's and 60's Rockin' Horror Disc really the ultimate '50s and '60s rockin' horror disc? No, considering it's missing well-known classics of the genre, like Bobby "Boris" Pickett's "Monster Mash," Screamin' Jay Hawkins' "I Put a Spell on You," and Jumpin' Gene Simmons' "Haunted House." But for a compilation of obscure mid-'50s-to-mid-'60s songs that mixed rock & roll with horror novelty lyrics and sounds, it does a pretty good job. And these 20 items are indeed obscure -- LaVern Baker (with "Voodoo Voodoo") is the only famous artist, though avid rock & roll fans will recognize a few of the others, like Bunker Hill and Kip Tyler. As tunes go, they're usually nothing to shout about, often confining themselves to stock basic early rock & roll progressions and arrangements, though sometimes with the ominous minor-key patterns common to monster-movie soundtracks.
Most of the time, though, it's rather wholesomely giddy romps through the lands of monsters, cemeteries, and ghosts, about as scary as a Halloween costume, but about as fun to put on.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
DESTROY GOD, FUCK WHITE MEN, STOP THE WARS, DON'T BE SO STUPID AND GET YOUR GUN
ARTIST``````````````OMAR RODRIGUEZ LOPEZ & LYDIA LUNCH
Albums like this one happen when someone with lots of spare time meets another person with lots of spare time and agrees with that person on these conclusions:
- God was the first cop + the first cock and we should get rid of him
- God is an invented retarded motherfucker that caused devastating wars
- Churches are evil, evil, evil places that spread hatred
- Women should not just marry, have kids and happily go shopping
- Women are opressed and should take weapons in their hands
- White men are guilty for pretty much everything
- America is one fucked up country
- America is guilty for today's wars (God commanded them)
- We should stop being stupid and take matters into our own hands
This album is definetly made for "artcy-horny-leftist-intellectual" masses but after all, it does have a strong message attached to it. I usually dont like musicians that openly want to change the world by simply telling people how stupid they are for believing in God. I am thinking the same way but I'm not shouting about it. BUT - this "artcy" album acctualy has something to offer: it's brutal, simple and has Rodriguez shredding his guitar non-stop. I think this album will not last very long but I recommend it anyway.
THESE SELECTED SAD SONGS ARE MEANT TO BE PLAYED AT MY FUTURE FUNERAL
ALBUM`````````````MUSIC FOR MY FUNERAL
GENRE`````````````SAD MUSIC FOR SAD OCCASION
This selection of various sad songs is a modest soundtrack for my small future funeral, wherever I might end up. From now on, I will always carry a copy of this cd in my inner pocket so if I accidentaly get killed in some strange land, people who find me can play these oddly simple and honest songs.
I also plan to give a copy to all of my best friends and family members. Just in case I die in friendly enviroment.
MUSIC FOR THIS EVENING
SELECTED AND CURATED BY VALENTIN
My personal selection of various indie-rock-pop-xperimental-prog-electronic songs for pleasant my evenings.
01 - Elliott Smith - Our Thing
02 - OP8 featuring Lisa Germano - Sand
03 - Tracy Chapman - I Am Yours.mp3
04 - M. Ward - Eyes on the Prize
05 - Nick Drake - River Man.mp3
06 - Jose Gonzalez - Lovestain.mp3
07 - Isobel Campbell And Mark Lanegan - It's Hard To Kill A Bad Thing.mp3
08 - Simon and Garfunkel - Scarborough Fair / Canticle
09 - Sufjan Stevens - The Upper Peninsula
10 - Sufjan Stevens - Redford (For Yia-Yia & Pappou)
11 - The American Analog Set - III
12 - Midnight Juggernauts - Dystopia
13 - Morphine - Swing It Low.mp3
14 - Labradford - The Cipher.mp3
15 - Múm - Green Grass of Tunnel.mp3
16 - Susumu Yokota - Don't Go Sleep
17 - Stereolab - Prisoner Of Mars
18 - Can - Last Night Sleep
19 - Cocteau Twins & Aphex Twin - Let My Fish Loose
20 - Kraftwerk - Heimatklange (The Bells of Home)
Sunday, November 18, 2007
COCKTAILS FOR EVERYBODY! POSITIVE MUSIC FOR THAT COLD, AWFUL SUNDAY MORNING
Now this is one talented crew. Basically, they transform other people's famous songs into latin-electro-jazzy-spacey-cute super-turbo-positive cover songs. Everybody thought that this band wouldn't last long but their good choices of songs, exotic vocals, great production and super catchy harmonies are still making my butt shake.
Positive music for that awful cold sunday morning.
Continuing on its cockeyed way through genre exercise and radical reinterpretation, Señor Coconut, having redone one set of electronic legends in Kraftwerk years back, takes another turn with the archly titled Yellow Fever. For indeed, it's the Yellow Magic Orchestra that gets the treatment this time out, but unlike the earlier effort, this is done not only with the individual participation of all three YMOTowa Tei to Mouse on Mars. The sheer number of mix-and-match efforts throughout, highlighted by a number of shorter pieces that serve as bridges between the full-on covers, could almost be a hip-hop album in an alternate universe, but the basic consistency at the heart of the album is clear -- Uwe Schmidt in his Señor Coconut guise, with vocalist Argenis Brito appearing throughout, transmogrifying YMO songs into classic Latin pop numbers. Brilliant.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
THIS ALBUM SHOULD BE CALLED "THE BIBLE OF DETROIT TECHNO"
ALBUM``````````````THE ART OF CONNECTING
GENRE```````````````MINIMAL DETROIT TECHNO
The only minimal techno producer/DJ I still like. As far as I am concerned, this album is one of the best minimal techno albums ever published. In terms of Detroit techno style - this was and is groundbreaking stuff from a groundbreaking producer. The song "The Bells" was one of few reason I went to techno parties in years 1999-2001.
Though Jeff Mills compiles previously released tracks for The Art of Connecting, the ten-track CD plays like a traditional album rather than a compilation. These ten tracks are culled from vinyl-only releases on Mills' Axis and Purpose Maker labels, and some of them, such as "The Bells" and "Java," are quite old, originally released in the mid-'90s. Yet, despite the thrown-together nature of The Art of Connecting and its old source material, it sounds surprisingly fresh, even if you're already familiar with these tracks. There's a careful balance of Mills' spacy, cinematic ambient recordings (here represented by album opener "Deckard" and closer "Utopia" as well as elements of "Nepta" and "Cobalt") offset some of his best Purpose Maker-style dancefloor tracks ("The Bells," "Java," "UFO") and his dystopian Axis-style work ("Pacific State of Mind," "Gamma Player," "4art"). The Art of Connecting overall functions well as an accessible sampler for anyone casually interested in Mills' diversity of output. You get a little taste of everything here while many of Mills' other CD releases tend to emphasize a particular style of his work, such as how From the 21st collects his spacy, cinematic ambient techno, Purpose Maker Collection his dancefloor tracks, and The Other Day his dystopian work. More than anything, The Art of Connecting succinctly showcases precisely how ably Mills has mastered all corners of the techno spectrum.
SETTING NEW STANDARDS IN ELECTRO/INDIE SCENE. FRESH. FRESH. FRESH. GREAT MUSIC LABEL.
ALBUM``````````````KITSUNE MAISON VOL. 4
One of my favourite electronic music labels today. I have nothing to say. You should read this great review from Stylus magazine. Its just gorgeous.
The Maison series exists to provide a snapshot of exactly how the label goes about wrecking dancefloors at the moment of its release date, and whether or not it proves as effective in the future probably matters to contemporary party-goers about as much as Blyleven's projected depreciation mattered to the batters who faced him during his no-hitter. The only thing that matters is that this stuff is mowing people down right now.
"But this is something else entirely. Labels such as "ambient" or "modern classical" fit for a few seconds, then the next passage in the song blows away the last, taking any attempt to classify along with it." - Stephen Fortner in Keyboard Magazine
ALBUM``````````````THIS BINARY UNIVERSE
The first track entitled "All That Makes Us Human Continues" was entirely written in Csound, taking roughly 6 months. You can call this man dedicated or you can call him a madman - it doesnt matter, this album is one of electronica's finest.
"This Binary Universe taps into BT's classical side, with expansive arrangements and intricate, albeit minimalist, thematic development. From the opening of "All That Makes Us Human Continues," BT reveals himself as a master of Eno-esque melancholy, as simple melodies evolve through an electro-orchestral instrumental palette. Lounge jazz with solos in the key of abstract, plaintive arpeggiated guitars, electro marches, minimalist hymns, and pastoral dreamscapes drive an album that seeks out joy and redemption, but not without traveling through the dark. The last track, "Good Morning Kaia," is a paean to his newborn daughter, and the most purely anthemic track on the disc.
The album makes extensive usage of a technique called circuit bending, often intentionally miswiring and short-circuiting keyboards, children's toys, and even Furbys to obtain interesting sequences of sounds that are processed and time-corrected, and then incorporated into the songs. Many of the beats and rhythms in the album were created by computer programs Brian Transeau developed himself to produce the effects he wanted.
1960'S IN 2007. CARIBOUS'S FINEST ALBUM.
GENRE``````````````INDIE ELECTRONIC - POP
Caribou's best album so far. It sounds like a beautiful emotional revival of that famous and unique psy-pop 1960's sound. I recommend - listening this album on your mp3 players and iPods while walking alone through crowded streets. Check out their official video for "Melody Day".
These tracks are first and foremost songs -- and not just because Snaith is singing a bit more. There's less of a "programmed" sound, although the productions are dense with tape cut-ups, layered harmonies, and various percussion lines threaded through the mix. And the sheer strength of the material is immediately apparent when the opener, "Melody Day," reveals itself as the best moment in Snaith's career. First of all, it sounds like it was recorded in 1966 by a British band that just missed the cut for the Nuggets, Vol. 2 box set, recalling '60s touchstones like the Move or Soft Machine. Not strictly a throwback, though, its ineffably crisp and kaleidoscopic production style ranks with the best of Dungen or Fiery Furnaces or Animal Collective (which is high praise indeed). Andorra may be a bedroom record, but it certainly doesn't sound like a bedroom record; it has the energy and intensity of group participation, and that makes it Snaith's best yet.
Monday, November 12, 2007
REDISCOVERED YOUNG GENIUS FROM THE 1960's BRITAIN WHO RESHAPED THE PROGRESSIVE SINGER/SONGWRITER GENRE - 30 YEARS AFTER HIS DEATH.
GENRE`````````````VOCAL/ BRITISH PROG-FOLK
RICHIE UNTERBERGER SAID IT BEST:
In the manner of the young Romantic poets of the 19th century who died before their time, Drake is revered by many listeners today, with a following that spans generations. Baby boomers who missed him the first time around found much to revisit once they discovered him, and his pensive loneliness speaks directly to contemporary alternative rockers who share his sense of morose alienation.
It's little wonder why Drake felt frustrated at the lack of commercial success his music initially gathered, considering the help he had on his debut record. Besides fine production from Joe Boyd and assistance from folks like Fairport Convention's Richard Thompson and his unrelated bass counterpart from Pentangle, Danny Thompson, Drake also recruited school friend Robert Kirby to create most of the just-right string and wind arrangements. His own performance itself steered a careful balance between too-easy accessibility and maudlin self-reflection, combining the best of both worlds while avoiding the pitfalls on either side. The result was a fantastic debut appearance, and if the cult of Drake consistently reads more into his work than is perhaps deserved, Five Leaves Left is still a most successful effort.
AN UNEXPECTED BRILLIANT ALBUM
Short story - this guy got bored with the repetative club/dance/electro scene around him and decided to - play his piano. A truly awesome and personal piece of work.
Near the end of the old millennium, someone once rapped, "Being futuristic these days means being futuristic on your own terms," which is entirely fitting when said rapper records an album of solo piano instrumentals. (Perhaps less instructive is what said rapper went on to say: "Being futuristic means loving worms, saving your sperm, wearing your pubes in a perm.") The former Chilly Gonzales has a hint of Gershwin in his playing, an urbane, contemplative take on the blues that sometime turns into a wry smile. He also has a hint of Satie, the spare and haunted sound of a music box turning slowly to a halt as it comes to the end of its wind. But what he also has is entirely his own, which not only makes this the best album of solo piano instrumentals by a rapper extant but also one of the finest solo piano albums not by a jazz or classical performer.
Obviously, there's a duality to any man who lit up stages with Peaches but also played with and produced Jane Birkin and Charles Aznavour, but Solo Piano is a disarmingly wonderful record.
PURE MINIMAL BEAT DRIVEN ENJOYMENT
All I can say is that considering the mainstream electonic music scene in 1997, this album should be praised for its bold ultra-minimal approach. Some songs are based on just one finely crafted loop of music that is literally repeated for 5 min, non-stop, without any breaks or changes and it feels + sounds gooood.
Yet another of prolific Cologne producer Wolfgang Voigt's guises, M:I:5 features his style of minimal bouncy dub bass beat techno that he would later further refine as Studio 1. Unlike the sparse palette of sounds present in his Studio 1 recordings -- strictly beats and nothing else -- Voigt chooses to integrate some colorful synth notes and other playful yet austere high-frequency sounds into the throbbing rhythms and creative structures of M:I:5. Following his debut on the legendary Structure label, Structuralism (later reissued on Auftrieb), Voigt has released his M:I:5 records primarily on his Profan label. In early 1998, he compiled much of his work under this guise on the Maßstab 1:5 album, released on Profan.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
For me, one of the most thrilling horror-thriller movies ever made. Soundtrack that follows the movie perfectly. Includes some selected audio vocal excerpts from the movie. Wendy Carlos is here again but only for the main title. Fierce, devastating themes that fully describe and follow the tension and perfection of Kubrick's filmmaking skills.
ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT EARLY ELECTRONIC SOUNDTRACKS FOR ONE OF THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL MOVIES EVER.
ALBUM`````````````A CLOCKWORK ORANGE
You've all seen the masterpiece movie? Then listen to this masterpiece soundtrack performed by one of the early electronica most important figures - Wendy fucking Carlos on magnificient Moog synthesizers. Cyberpunk-futuristic-classical -ultra-violence social apocalypse. Yes - and watch the movie again. It works fine today.
Wendy Carlos' music from "A Clockwork Orange" has the best effect any film music can have: when you hear it, you remember exactly when in the film it was playing, and you can definitely remember whether or not you felt it all over again. I did with this disc. Although I haven't seen "A Clockwork Orange" in at least eight years, every creepy feeling came back to me. The milk bar, the rape, the Gene Kelly number, the prison, the torture... Jesus. I'm a happy guy....
Friday, October 5, 2007
DEPECHE MODE'S ICONIC SINGER DAVE GAHAN COMES BACK WITH HIS EAGERLY AWAITED SOLO ALBUM
GENRE`````````````ADULT ALTERNATIVE POP/ROCK
RELEASE``````````23 OCT 2007
I really dont like this guy, his voice anymore and his face, oh damn I hate that face... But hell his new "not out yet" solo-side-project album is here so get it.
Dave Gahan makes a dynamic return on 22nd October with 'Hourglass' - his eagerly awaited second solo album. Best known as the iconic frontman of Depeche Mode, he continues his impressive career with a blazing new side-project, which follows his critically acclaimed solo debut 'Paper Monsters'.
Produced by Dave with Christian Eigner & Andrew Phillpott, both members of the Depeche Mode touring band, 'Hourglass' also reflects Gahan's growth as a songwriter. Initially showcased with 2003's 'Paper Monsters', he later wrote 3 stellar tracks for Depeche Mode's recent 2 million selling 'Playing The Angel' - 'I Want It All', 'Suffer Well' & 'Nothing's Impossible'.
Hourglass highlights include the gospel-tinged 'Saw Something', which kick-starts the album with stealth before effortlessly setting the tone for the other 9 tracks. "That was the catalyst that started the idea to write again," Dave recalls, adding that is was also "the first lyric, and the key to open the door to thinking, 'Okay, I can go here.'"
Other standout moments include the exhilarating, tour de force roar of 'Deeper and Deeper', the soaring epic first single 'Kingdom' (out on 8th October) and the addictive pull of 'Use You', where he scathingly lets loose his disgust with people, and specifically, himself. Meanwhile, on 'Down' - perhaps the most confessional song on the record - he confesses "I feel so old, down on the ground is where I'm bound to end up."
Sonically, the record cuts across a range of influences and styles with grace. Decidedly more electronic than his previous solo work, he has seamlessly swapped the guitar of 'Paper Monsters' for the synthesizer he epitomizes so well.
"It doesn't feel so much that the band is my identity anymore, although I owe everything to it. I'm starting to really feel that I have my own voice, and it's definitely coming out in the songs. For me, it's the best possible record I could make at this time. And it's gone well beyond what I expected of myself."