Saturday, June 28, 2008
GENRE``````ELECTRO, TECHNO, GODDAMMIT!
I can't say anything better than this: "He’s been hailed as one of the finest techno producers of our time with the release of his debut effort with the Poney EP, fusing the most unthought-about sounds together in a schizophrenic cocktail of sounds that manage to both set dancefloors ablaze or double as the perfect stoner music to relax when tuned into at home. He weaves an intricate tapestry to become the soundtrack to our moods and life, without breaking so much as a sweat."
This was an excerpt from this interview
NICE ALBUM REVIEW:
BY SOUL SEDUCTION
Over the last five years, one man's music has become synonymous with the ultimate euphoric rock'n'roll meltdown. But he doesn't play guitar and he hardly ever listens to rock. Mention the name Vitalic to anyone who's heard his music or witnessed his blistering live show and they'll nod approvingly, hold their hands up and happily concede, "He is the master".
If you know Vitalic's records - the 2005 album ‘OK Cowboy’ and the killer singles ‘La Rock 01’ and ‘My Friend Dario’ spring to mind - then you'll be familiar with the emotional punch this producer can pack. Vitalic's muscular electronic disco powers through techno's canon, snaring the spirit of Giorgio Moroder, Aphex Twin, the Chemical Brothers and Daft Punk as it surges towards some untouched synth-pop nirvana that only Pascal can imagine. Now the master, Pascal Arbez-Nicolas, releases the album thousands of his fans are dying to hear - the first Vitalic live album: In his concerts he revamps his hits, road-tests new tracks, drops the odd cover version, and plays songs that will never make it onto vinyl. Unlike most laptop-prodding dance acts, each Vitalic show is live and unique. ‘V Live’, for example, was recorded at the AB venue in Brussels on October 27, 2006 before 2,000 people. This was Vitalic's first big sold-out show.
There are eight brand new unreleased Vitalic tracks on ‘V Live’. ‘Anatoles’ is a blissful highlight, while ‘Follow The Car’, ‘Rhythm In A Box’ and ‘Fast Lane’ blaze a trail from Dijon to Detroit. And ‘Bambalec’, which Pascal's been playing for some time. Then there are the hits, ‘La Rock 01’, ‘No Fun’, ‘Valletta Fanfares’, ‘My Friend Dario’, let's just flag it up as a major goosebump situation. ‘V Live’ is the finest document yet of France's glorious metal-disco warrior in action.
As live albums go, it's probably the best one that's ever been released in the history of the genre.
ESSENTIAL 60 SONGS
GENRE``````ROCK, EXPERIMENT, BEAT POETRY, ADULT, PROG-FOLK
This is my essential Tom Waits selection spanning his ENTIRE career. 60 songs that I find to be his best ones.
I've been listening to all of his albums I could get my hands on for full 10 years and still I am eager to hear what tricks he has under his filthy hat.
He is one of a few musicians I've listened enough to "know them by heart". If you are starting with Waits (or you already found him), you should check this out because there are no "best of" compilations that are so comprehensive such as this one.
I definetly recommend finding and downloading his entire discography. It does not matter if you like his early beautiful, gentle bluesish-jazzish failed love stories or his latter theatrical screams and shouts about drunken russian soldiers and melting chocolate jesuses - he is one of the most original, self-preserving and independent artists in modern music. And above all, he never had a big media support because he never needed it - the critics and his huge fan-base follow him everywhere he goes.
I intentionaly didnt include some all-time-songs that the critics praised because I wanted to make room for some of his experimentations that are also a solid part of his character as much as his "biggest songs". After all, you can always easily find some of his many official Best of's.
01 1973 - Grapefruit Moon
02 1973 - I Hope That I Don't Fall In Love With You
03 1973 - Little Trip To Heaven
04 1973 - Martha
05 1973 - Ol' '50
06 1974 - San Diego Serenade
07 1974 - The Heart Of The Saturday Night
08 1976 - The Piano Has Been Drinking (Not Me)
09 1976 - Tom Traubert's Blues
10 1977 - Cinny`s Waltz
11 1977 - I Never Talk To Strangers
12 1978 - Christmas Card From A Hooker
13 1978 - Red Shoes By The Drugstore
14 1978 - Sweet Little Bullet From A Pretty Blue Gun
15 1982 - Old Boyfriends (with Crystal Gayle)
16 1983 - Rainbirds (instrumental)
17 1983 - 16 Shells From A 30.06
18 1983 - Shore Leave
19 1983 - Swordfishtrombones
20 1983 - Underground
21 1985 - Big Black Mariah
22 1985 - Anywhere I Lay My Head
23 1985 - Jockey Full Of Bourbon
24 1985 - Clap Hands
25 1985 - Singapore
26 1987 - Straight To The Top (Rhumba)
27 1987 - I'll Be Gone
28 1987 - Innocent When You Dream 78
29 1987 - Cold Cold Ground
30 1987 - Train Song
31 1987 - Blow Wind Blow
32 1987 - Yesterday Is Here
33 1987 - Way Down In The Hole
34 1992 - Earth Died Screaming
35 1992 - Goin' Out West
36 1992 - Such A Scream
37 1992 - I Don't Wanna Grow Up
38 1992 - Who Are You
39 1993 - Russian Dance
40 1993 - Just the Right Bullets
41 1999 - Big In Japan
42 1999 - Chocolate Jesus
43 1999 - Hold On
44 1999 - What's He Building
45 2002 - Everything You Can Think
46 2002 - God's Away on Business
47 2002 - Kommieneyuepadt
48 2002 - Misery is the River of the World
49 2002 - Fawn
50 2004 - Day After Tomorrow
51 2004 - Sins of My Father
52 2006 - Books Of Moses
53 2006 - 219
54 2006 - Lie To Me
55 2006 - Ain't Goin' Down To The Well
56 2006 - Altar Boy
57 2006 - Tell It To Me
58 2006 - Puttin' On The Dog
59 2006 - Never Let Go
60 2006 - Children's Story
My first uploads on mediafire in 3 parts.
DOWNLOAD PART 1
DOWNLOAD PART 2
DOWNLOAD PART 3
Ladies and gentlemen, you are floating in farce. And Chris Morris wouldn't have it any other way. But first, the back-story: After his vicious, satirical television shows The Day Today and Brass Eye were cancelled, BBC's Radio 1 bought up his new series of dark, comedic ambient sketches entitled Blue Jam. This album collects the highlights. So to speak. From skits about evil four-year-olds, knob harmony, and a couple who is so apathetic that their only worry over their kidnapped son is whether or not to cancel the baby sitter -- all wrapped in a fug of electronic accompaniment by the likes of Aphex Twin and Brian Eno -- the jokes here are as black as soot. Think Steven Soderbergh's Schizopolis or those censored skits from The Kids in the Hall. Abhorrent tragi-comedy that would leave absurdists green with envy. Especially with ironic pillow talk like "Push your balls up my nose." Terrifying. Deeply hilarious. Like John Waters, you may often find Morris childish and repellant -- but you're glad he's out there.
01 Blue Jam Intro
02 Doc Phone
03 Lamacq Sting
04 4ft Car
05 Suicide Journalist
07 Bad Sex 2
08 Mayo Sting
09 Unflustered Parents
10 Moyles Sting
11 TV Lizards
12 Doc Cock
13 Hobbs Sting
14 Morton Interview
15 Fixit Girl
17 Kids Party
18 Club News
19 Whiley Sting
20 Little Girl Balls
21 Blue Jam Outro
THE PRINCE OF DARKNESS
This is one of my favourite Bill Hicks performances. It is very rare and this is a bootleg recording, it was never officialy published.
Hicks is in one of his worst states here and this is one of his darkest performances.
01 Human Fellowship
02 The Comedy Of Hate
03 Settle In For This One
04 Willy's Balance
05 It's All A Dream
06 Little Satan Boy
07 A Man Of Taste And Decency
08 Mystery In My Trousers
09 Cancer! Cancer!
10 The Irony Of Pure Hatred.mp3
11 Deep Hole Of Comedic Ineptitude
12 The God Of Comedy
13 I'm Talking to Myself
14 That is Cleverness
Thursday, June 26, 2008
GENRE`````SHIBUYA-KEY, FUSION, ELECTRONIC, POP, NOISE, POST-EVERYTHING, AVANT-GARDE AND A TOUCH OF TRADITIONAL
This is mix of old and new Japanese performers I enjoyed in recent months. As usual, there are no genre limitations. This is mostly for people not familiar with Japanese production.
OOIOO is one of the most progressive bands from Japan in recent years and they can be compared to great acts such as The Knife. Monotrona and YMCK are a beautiful retro takes on Commodore64 and Atari 8-bit sound. Fantastic Plastic Machine were probably the most important band in shibuya-kei genre during the 1990's and so I intentionaly selected their instrumental track because it shows the atmosphere of youngsters shopping for new gadgets in downtown Tokyo. Chocolate Lips are a true rarity, their cassette single Milk & Honey was somewhat a pop radio hit in the 1980's. Petty Booka is a very interesting and popular girl band from Tokyo that sings modern hawaiian music (a must have for me). Magical Power Mako is one of the finest examples of Japan's experimental and avant-garde scene. Satanicpornocultshop is a bizzare mixture of possibly every genre the band could play or sample (including Mc Hammer). Boredoms - screamy noise indie-rock band that has a cult status and everybody is asking why and how? Cornelius are a very popular, talented and established band. Their track Wataridori is one of the most beuatiful abstractions I ever heard. I definetly recommend every record they ever published. Takako Minekawa is a solid singer oftenly collaborating with western musicians. She mostly sings about her personal obssesions like pets, girlfriends, new keboards and shoes. Ikue Mori represents the finest contemporary experiments in New York-Tokyo relations that seem to produce great bands and projects every year. Asa-Chang & Junray are my most recent obssesion and I will upload their EP's and albums soon. Unfortunately, many of their works never got published outside of Japan but some of their songs were included on some respected western compilations. Tokyo Gakuso preserve the oldest style of Japanese performing arts called gagaku so they might not belong on this compilation but they definetly deserve to be mentioned.
If you know some great Japan based acts put some links in comments - I am always interested.
01 OOIOO - Umo
02 Monotrona - Cadillac Fantasy
03 Fantastic Plastic Machine - Theme of Luxury
04 Pizzicato Five and Konishi Yasuharu - Micky Mouse Club March
05 Chocolate lips - Milk & Honey
06 Petty Booka - Let's Talk Dirty In Hawaiian
07 Magical Power Mako - Tsugaru
08 YMCK - Starlight
09 Satanicpornocultshop - U Cant Touch Dis - Mc Frosen Pine And Dj Ugh
10 Satanicpornocultshop - Chopstick Park (Alternative Ver. Feat. Thu Su Youn)
11 Boredoms - Okinawa Rasta Beef (Mockin' Fuzz
12 Cornelius - Wataridori
13 Takako Minekawa & Dymaxion - Brioche
14 Ikue Mori - Glimpse Of The Moon
15 Asa-Chang & Junray - Senaka (Instrumental)
16 Tokyo Gakuso Tadaaki Ohno - Ryoo Ranjo
GUEST MIX 01: ZERAVIV'S BLEEDING PANDA MIXTURE VOLUME 01
MIX``````````MIXTURE VOLUME 01
DESCRIPTION BY ZERAVIV HIMSELF:)
One of my first mix tapes EVER but,
I do listen to all kinds of different shit ever since my father smiled while my mother was screaming like she's in a post-apocalyptic hospital horror movie...
Something like that belly part in the first Alien film series ;)
Thanks for Panda Slayer for letting me slay my way through his entire (ULTRA SOPHISTICATED AND HEARTCORE CD posts) and mix'em like an amateur till they're dead.
Mabruk and big up ya Valentinos
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
SWIRLING EVAPORATION FROM JAPAN
ALBUM`````...AND WATER CYCLES
GENRE`````AVANT-GARDE, AMBIENT, GLITCH
Enjoyable, lush soundscapes with infinite number of glitchy layered beats carefully mixed with piano melodies and violin variations obscured by clouds of white noise and tough pads describing abstract conditions and movements in an orderly fashion. A touch of noise here, a hint of japan-piano-naive-kitch there, a tiny broken-beat inside with some cream production outside and you get this quite enjoyable record.
MOTORO FAAM is hailed from Kanagawa, Japan and is an act made by three 23 years old musicians. Mizukami Ryuta takes care of the electronic side of this unique project (samples and programming) while Kobara Daisuke (violin) and Kato Ayumi (piano) both classical educate have a main input in the musical part.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
AS A CHILD I COULD WALK ON THE CEILING
WHY, HOW AND ALBUM REVIEW:
Damn, it was almost 10 years ago... This album was the biggest discovery of my psychedelic/goa/trance youthful period (1996-2000) along with Prana, Shakta and esspecialy the only good Tsuyoshi Suzuki album - Mix For Issey Miyake Men by Naoki Takizawa (which I might upload sometime). At that time I would just grab some shitty amount of cash, run to the local bootleggers and since I had no musical knowledge or any kind of developed taste, i would just buy records by their covers or simply ask someone for advice. Thats how I got me a nice copy of Scizoeffective.
Psychedelic club scene was utterly underground at that time and trance parties were held occasionaly and mostly in just few clubs or illegaly on open spaces. This genre of electronic music never got any mainstream attention mostly because of heavy drug-use, frequent police raids and I should say without shame - 99,99% of the entire genre simply sucks, has no artistic value and is oftenly musically inferior and stuck in plain and simple esthetics.
Scizoeffective was the first and the last album of dark-minimal-psy-meltdown I swallowed like mom's cherry-pie. I would just play the whole damn thing in horribly long loops that lasted hour after hour into the night. This is the only psy album (in my knowledge) that sounds coherent and has that stillness and coldness that removes most of those weak clubbers from a party. When dj's would start playing some of the more dark-rhytm-based minimal tracks from Scizoeffective (somewhere around morning) most of the maggots would say "Fuck you guys, I'm going home!". Thats when my time for dancing acctualy began.
The only weak and really crappy track is "Dr. Rayman" but the rest is a solid piece of work with some outstanding tracks. "As A Child I Could Walk On The Ceiling" was my personal psy anthem and one of few remaining psychedelic hymns. I remember some guy kept bitting his friends arm while pulling my hair and mumblingly screaming the lyrics of the song. The usual thing for dj's playing this song would be to play the dub instrumental version first (the last song on the album), then blend in and play the original mix without interupting it and then close it by playing the full dub version again. We simply called that "20" because it always lasted for 20 minutes and we pretty much screamed the entire time. Other outstanding tracks include "Pop", the club hit "Travelling At The Speed Of Thought", "Thing" and "Sepercell".
Critics and the public consider the second Delta album "Send In...Send Back..." better, more orchestral and powerful but I say fuck that, this album started it. It is raw, simple, direct and was a mindblowing experience that launched on of the greatest psy songs of all time.
By the way, I was furious because this cult album is almost IMPOSIBBLE to find on psy-blogs, forums, torrents and even on peer-to-peer programs(after few days of hard digging I found it). That tells us quite enough about the awareness of today's psy-maggot-scene.
Friday, June 20, 2008
GREATEST IRISH MUSICIANS REVISITING THE LOST CELTIC LANDS
GENRE`````TRADITIONAL IRISH FOLK
The Chieftains are the only traditional Irish folk band out there (as far as I am concerned) and the only one I can listen on and on for years (to come). Musically, they are absolutely the richest thing that came from Ireland. Their otherworldly traditional music seems warmingly familiar but also it sounds like it was made in a forgotten time that only exists in history books and people's imagination.
Most of their works (except for some commercial shit they did with Jagger, Sting and some other shitfaced famous Irish stars) is brillliant because it has no decorative, atmospheric kitchy "feeling" that most of the bands (that followed them) have and the best example of that is this album which is my favourite Chieftains recording. Some songs on this album (for instance - Dueling Chanters or Tears Of Stone) are so furiously well played that they sound like something that was not played and recorded by musicians but something that always existed and you are just somehow hearing the music.
For instance, the closing song - Dublin In Vigo, sounds like a dream/celebration/party that never began and will never end. It just is and you can just enjoy the celebrating crowd and the enchanting music that melts between their voices and binds them forever in one of the most lively and glorious songs I have ever, and I mean - fucking ever heard.
Read the excellent album review below from allmusic.com
Here the Chieftains have embarked upon an exploration of the "lost Celtic province" of Galicia (the northwest corner of Spain) and areas extending to Portugal, the Basque provinces, and Cuba. They have used the finest musicians from these areas to propel their music with a conviction that staggers the imagination. Santiago catapults the listener into a musical excursion that seamlessly flows through the styles and musics of these different lands, so that a beginning and an end can no more be distinguished than the waters of the Mississippi River can be separated from those rivers that flow into it on its journey from its heart to its mouth. Attempting to find album highlights is virtually impossible due to the incredible musicianship displayed by the guests, too numerous to mention, who populate this work. Nevertheless, the opening five-part suite "Pilgrimage to Santiago" is worthy of singling out, with its use of ancient traditional instruments such as the tralaparta (large wooden planks that are laid on baskets and maize leaves and played with sticks) and the participation, in a different section of the suite, of the Ulteria Choir. Another notable track is "Dueling Chanters" with "seventh Chieftain" Carlos Nunez, a Galician gaita player, who had toured with the group for about two years at the time of this recording. As Paddy Moloney on uilleann pipes and Nunez on gaita trade dazzling licks, it is an absolute delight to hear these two, on their cousins to the bagpipes, playing off each other so beautifully.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
GENRE`````POST ROCK, EXPERIMENTAL, JAPANESE ROCK
This is global underground music steeped in the enchantment of nature, the mystery of drones, the iconoclasm of Kraut and the energy of Yosakoi, driven throughout by a massive percussion workout that only pauses for lonesome trumpet blares and vocal squawks. Just maybe, if Pharaoh Sanders established a school of avant-garde composition in the forests of Finland, the inaugural graduation concert might sound something like this - assuming the mushrooms were potent enough.
“We came down from the North,” is all brother/sister duo The Knife want us to know, while OOIOO are still striving to get there, channelling sound through the tundra, taiga and Nordic forests with all their celestial and shamanistic peculiarities. Both groups are essentially about drums and their ancient purpose of uniting humans in mass ritual: in OOIOO’s case the cumulative ability of slender female Japanese to bash out a rhythm that could topple a mastodon; in The Knife’s case, processed beats lash out to create a euphoric, post-rave Nuremberg. Both groups shun all kinds of celebrity deeds and use video and projection to guard, rather than propagate, their identities. In these two videos for OOIOO and The Knife, Japanese directors spin ecological themes into a hypnotic final product that is as far removed from standard video iconography (band striving to present itself as marketable) as the sound strays from conventional musical forms.
Barely appreciated now, these will be the hipster albums of 2030. Just as some of us now affect to like a soundtrack of early 80s East Village jazz-skronk, a product of the sheer boredom and its partner freedom that have become unknowable to us in our internet age, our children will swim deeply in the ‘boredom and freedom’ of the late 00s.
In Japanese, Taiga means "big river"; in Russian, it's "forest." Both are apt descriptions for the dense, winding, jungle-like music OOIOO craft on this, their fifth album. Not to push the connection too much, but Taiga's multilingual meanings could also allude to the band's magpie-like ability to pick the most vital, interesting sounds from other cultures and fashion them into what feels like world music from an alternate universe. Despite the Japanese and Russian meanings of "taiga," the most prominent influence on Taiga comes from Africa: dense African jazz and lilting African folk-inspired guitar melodies play large roles on most of the album's tracks.
Most importantly, the album is a beautiful demonstration of how OOIOO keep changing and innovating without losing touch with what made them distinctive in the first place. Their inspired, eclectic mix of sounds and textures is always playful, but Taiga's powerful playing and sophisticated arrangements make it OOIOO's most mature album yet.
!WARNING! Track one - "Uma" is not included (shit happens) and you can download it here - OOIOO - Uma
WHAT AND WHERE IS THAT VAGINA?
Pent-R-Books was a cheapo, X-rated publishing outfit based at 120 13th St in Brooklyn, in business from the late-60s (maybe before) through the late-70s. From what I can tell, they published mainly adult fare disguised as how-to books. They published a book version of Sexual Adventures in Marriage (written by one Rudiger Boschmann), as well as other titles such as The Full Color Guide To Sexual Pleasures A-Z, The Picture Book of Sexual Love, and Love's Photo Album.
This is simply put - the funniest and most obscure sex education tape ever and its from the 70's! It mostly sounds like it is written for retards who dont know where women's legs might be but that just makes this a bigger gem. The small company that made this and other similar tapes was closed down long ago and there are just a few tapes people found on flea-markets or in their dad's closet that you can find on the internet. Just check out the tracklist:
03 Sexual Pleasures - Intro
02 Sexual Pleasures - The Vagina
03 SSexual Pleasures - The Breast
04 Sexual Pleasures - The_Buttocks_and_Anus
05 Sexual Pleasures - Douches
06 Sexual Pleasures - Personal_Hygiene
07 Sexual Pleasures - Menstruation
08 Sexual Pleasures - Contraception
09 Sexual Pleasures - Hair
10 Sexual Pleasures - Masturbation
Good luck and enjoy your sex.
Monday, June 16, 2008
CHEEZY-SLIMY-EXOTICA WITH NU-GROOVES.
ALBUM`````BOMBAY THE HARD WAY
GENRE`````FUNK, BOLLYWOOD, FUSION
This collection of tracks comes from the bungalow of legendary Indian masala film director Anandji V. Shah after sitting and rotting for nearly 25 years. The director, along with his brother Kalyanji, not only wrote and directed dozens, perhaps several hundreds of films (no none knows for sure, not even them), and scored them as well throughout the '60s, '70s, and '80s. These were not just any Bollywood movies -- these were masala "mixed spice" films, the Bollywood version of cheap action and blaxploitation movies, B-movies, or James Bond-type thrillers. What is so remarkable about these tracks is how well Kalyanji and Anandji were able to take the old traditional and folk melodies of Rajastan and combine them with the deep grooves prevalent in their American and European, and even Caribbean, counterparts. To that end, these tracks are remarkable, works of groove genius, non-incidental even though they are incidental music that reflects the '60s and '70s movies they came from.
Producer Dan the Automator had DJ Josh Davis and Nana Simopoulos add some nu-groove beats and a few extra sitars to the already drenched in groove and rhythm tracks. It wasn't so much to update them as to celebrate what was already happening in the music. Here is surf music, blues, go-go, discothèque, psychedelia, cheesy R&B, and exotica all wound together with spoken bits from the films that accent the wildness of these pieces.
Tough, freaky, and completely enjoyable, Bombay the Hard way is a celebration of a particular kind of mad genius, the kind it takes to throw everything into a mix and make it work no matter what the circumstances or outcome! This is truly groovy, funky, tripped-out music from the movie capitol of the world, and showcases how the Americans and the Italians may have invented the noir and cheap thrill movie soundtrack, but the Indians took it to a whole different level.
The package is killer, too. I'm telling you, you
GENRE`````EXPERIMENTAL, ALTERNATIVE POP-ROCK
Four years after Disco Volante, Mr. Bungle returns with California, which immediately distinguishes itself from its predecessors -- it's probably their most heavily orchestrated record to date and their most melodic overall, as well as the least dependent on rock styles. That's certainly not to imply that this is a tame or immediately accessible record, nor that Mr. Bungle has suddenly gone sane. There is a stronger lounge-music orientation to the group's trademark rapid-fire genre-hopping; we hear more pop, swing, rockabilly, country & western, bossa nova, Hawaiian and Middle Eastern music, jazz, Zappa-esque doo wop, arty funk, post-rock, space-age pop, spaghetti-Western music, warped circus melodies, and even dramatic pseudo-new age, plus just a smidgen of heavy metal. Sure, some of those sounds have appeared on Mr. Bungle records past, but the difference this time is the focus with which the band deploys its arsenal. California is their most concise album to date, clocking in at around 45 minutes; plus, while the song structures are far from traditional, they're edging more in that direction and that greatly helps the listener in making sense of the often random-sounding juxtapositions of musical genres (assuming, of course, that you're supposed to even try to make sense of them).
As with any Mr. Bungle album, California requires at least a few listens to pull together, but its particular brand of schizophrenia isn't nearly as impenetrable as that of Disco Volante, even if it will still make you marvel at the fact that such a defiantly odd, uncommercial band recorded for Warner Bros.
A brilliant and innovative 12-string guitar player, James Blackshaw was born in 1981 in London, where he continues to make his home. Another in a long string of amazing British acoustic guitar wizards, Blackshaw has been compared at various times to Bert Jansch, Davy Graham, Robbie Basho, John Fahey, Glenn Jones, Jack Rose, and Leo Kottke, among others, but his sound, often modal and based on improvising across set themes, is entirely his own.
James Blackshaw's Sunshrine was originally issued in 2005 by the Digitalis Industries label in an edition of 1,000 CDs. A year later, Bo'Weavil re-released it on vinyl as half of a double album that also included his first recording, Celeste. That pressing was limited to 525 copies and sold out quickly. Blackshaw was garnering a small but very dedicated following to be sure. His earlier recordings had been reviewed in The Wire and in Signal to Noise, and were circulated by word of mouth and on dubbed CD-Rs for two years. Blackshaw was introduced to American shores via the Cloud of Unknowing album in 2007, thanks to the great ears over at New York's Tompkins Square imprint. The label has undertaken a great labor of love in providing the American releases of Blackshaw's back catalog: this is the third and final entry in that series on CD. Sunshrine is the shortest of Blackshaw's early recordings. It is comprised of two tracks; the title piece at 26 and a half minutes and "Skylark Herald's Dawn," a beautiful little sketch that lasts just a bit over three minutes. Call it a mini-album, a long EP, whatever; the title track is perhaps the single most stunning piece of music Blackshaw released up to Cloud of Unknowing.
Blackshaw plays both six- and 12-string guitars on "Sunshrine," and an Indian sarod, harmonium, organ, bells, and bowed cymbals as well. The track is pristinely recorded and is developed, as his previous works had been, by combining modal notions of Indian raga with long drones juxtaposed against various melodies and fluctuating rhythmic pulses and dynamic textures.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
ALBUM```THE ART OF THE THEREMIN
Yesterday, I finally found and watched the excellent documentary - Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey which I absolutely recommend as a must see for anybody interested in music history and American-Russian Cold War relations. It is rather difficult to find on the Internet but I think there are some torrents remaining around.
The movie struck me because it's not just a story about a talented scientist/musician who made a musical revolution that redefined music, it is also a sad, emotionaly rich love story about a man ruined by his homeland's violent politics and Cold War psychological destruction that separated him from his wife and even from his much adored child/instrument.
This album could be the greatest tribute to the revolutionary genius of Leon Theremin.
LEON THEREMIN BIOGRAPHY:
Leon Theremin invented the theremin (also called the thereminvox) in 1919, when his country was in the midst of the Russian Civil War.
Léon Theremin fled to America and set up a laboratory in New York in the 1930s, where he developed the theremin and experimented with other electronic musical instruments and other inventions. These included the Rhythmicon, commissioned by the American composer and theorist Henry Cowell. During the jazzy 1930's Theremin worked closely with fellow Russian émigré and theremin virtuoso Clara Rockmore.
He developed performance locations that could automatically react to dancers' movements with varied patterns of sound and light. After the Soviet consulate had apparently demanded he divorce Katia and while working with the American Negro Ballet, the inventor fell in love with and married the young prima ballerina Lavinia Williams. His marriage to the African-American dancer caused shock and disapproval in his social circles, but the ostracized couple remained together.
Theremin abruptly returned to the Soviet Union in 1938. At the time, the reasons for his return were unclear: some claimed that he had been kidnapped from his studio by the KGB.
While working for the KGB, in 1945 Theremin also invented The Thing, as it was called, an ingenious listening device used during the Cold War for eavesdropping on the American ambassador to the Soviet Union.
After 51 years in the Soviet Union Léon Theremin started travelling, first visiting France in June 1989 and then the United States in 1991, each time accompanied by his daughter Natalia, where he was reunited with Clara Rockmore who performed a number of concerts at this time. He also made a demonstration concert at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague in early 1993 before dying in Moscow in 1993 at the age of 97.
CLARA ROCKMORE BIOGRAPHY:
Clara Rockmore (1911-1998) is generally considered to be the most accomplished performer ever of the theremin instrument.
Clara Reisenberg Rockmore was a child prodigy on the violin and entered the Imperial conservatory of Saint Petersburg at the age of five. She studied violin under the virtuoso Leopold Auer, and remains to this day the youngest student ever to be admitted to the institution. Unfortunately, bone problems due to childhood malnutrition forced her to abandon violin performance past her teen years. That however led her to discover the newborn electronic instrument and arguably become the greatest ever virtuosa of the theremin.
Her classical training gave her an advantage over the many theremin performers who lacked this background. She had extremely precise, rapid control of her movements, important in playing an instrument that depends on the performer's motion and proximity rather than touch. She also had the advantage of working directly with Léon Theremin from the early days of the instrument's commercial development in the United States. Rockmore, as the mature musician she was, saw the limitations of the original instrument and helped to develop the instrument to fulfill her needs, making several suggestions to improve the theremin as a performing instrument. She had a special theremin tailored by Leon Theremin himself to meet her unique requirements.
While many listeners have heard the theremin played poorly or used mostly as a spooky special-effects device, Rockmore used it to perform classical works. Under her control, the theremin sounded like a blend of the cello, violin and human voice.
ABOUT THE THEREMIN:
The theremin is one of the earliest electronic musical instruments, and the first musical instrument played without being touched. The controlling section usually consists of two metal antennas which sense the position of the player's hands and control radio frequency oscillator(s) for frequency with one hand, and volume with the other. The electric signals from the theremin are amplified and sent to a loudspeaker.
The theremin is associated with "alien", surreal, and eerie-sounding portamento, glissando, tremolo, and vibrato sounds, due to its use in soundtracks such as Spellbound, The Lost Weekend, and The Day the Earth Stood Still. Theremins are also used in art music (especially avant-garde and 20th century "new music") and in popular music genres such as rock and pop. John Otway regularly uses a Theremin in his performances, as does Claudio Sanchez of Coheed and Cambria while playing guitar. Jean Michel Jarre also used it on his album Oxygène.
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Tuesday, June 3, 2008
ALBUM`````CHINESE CHILDREN'S SONGS
GENRE`````MUSIC FOR KIDS, PROPAGANDA
I dont know where I got this or how old it is. And yes - it is in Chinese.
Anyway, this is a collection of children's songs from communist China obviously produced by state run propaganda machinery. Just look at some of the titles and you'll get the picture. These songs are standard brainwashing stuff in communist and socialist countries (old Yugoslavia, old Romania, North Korea etc) but what makes Chinese (children) music stand out is the presence of Western influenced production. Well, the songs are simple and mostly sound like a cheap ad from the 80's but it makes an interesting mix, considering the fact that most people think of China as a stiff system that does not allow other influences.
For me, the most interesting songs are the most obvious examples of glorification: We Are So Happy, Our Fields, Green Motherland, Communist Young Pioneers, I Love Bejing Tiananmen, Heroic Little Sisters etc.
01 We Are So Happy
02 Our Fields
03 Green Motherland
04 Little Swallow
05 Wa Ha Ha
06 Communist Young Pioneers
07 I Love Beijing Tiananmen
08 Little Trumpet
09 Heroic Little Sisters
10 Happy Holidays
11 Little White Boat
12 Children From Mountains
13 Robot Atom
14 Kleiner Kinder
15 Two Little Stars
16 Little Florist Girl
17 This Is A Little World
19 Mama Is the Best
20 I Have A Good Papa
21 Good Morning Mama
22 Little Lamb Going Home
23 Mud Doll
24 See You Later
25 QingHai Blue
26 Barking Dog
27 Ding Dong
Monday, June 2, 2008
WORSHIPING THE DANCEFLOOR
GENRE`````DANCE, CLUB, INDIE ELECTRONIC
Santogold, the collaboration between Santi White and former Stiffed bandmate John Hill, first began receiving notice in late 2007, thanks mostly to the release of the single "Creator," which seemed to point White in the direction of an M.I.A. knockoff.
The debut full-length, however, shows Santogold to be a unique group, one that pulls equally from dub, pop-punk, hip-hop, electro, and rock without succumbing to the archetypes of any. These are the exceptions to the overall sound, however (and their very rarity makes them so much more appealing, and evidence of the work of a complete artist, not one trying to follow the coattails of another), because most of Santogold lacks that jagged angularity that drives M.I.A.'s records.
The album is informed by pop and good humor, the importance of melody and structure never overshadowed by rhythm and dancefloor-worthiness. This is music that looks outward at the pan-continental landscape while staying firmly adherent to and respectful of its deeply American roots; it's the emerging -- and hopeful -- face of the new millennium, and an altogether shining accomplishment.