Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mark McGuire - Amethyst Waves (2008)

ARTIST`````Mark McGuire
Amethyst Waves
GENRE`````Electronic, Ambient, Krautrock



Yet another new tape from Mark McGuire of Emeralds. And again - absolutely gorgeous. This time more kraut-inspired, psychedelic echoed synths versus melodic guitar loops, slowly expanding layers of mesmerizing sound.

Recorded live to cassette. Edition of 50 copies in Norelco style cases, second edition of 75 in round-corner cases. About 10 copies contain a vocal sample at the end of the A side.


Thursday, February 4, 2010

25 Most popular albums on bleeding panda blog

Here are 25 most popular albums from this blog. I am surprised that one of my earliest compilations is by far the most downloaded item here. I am not particularly happy with the Before Sleep compilation because when I listen it now it seems at some moments a bit cheesy (Landscapes is my dearest) but people seem to like it a lot. Also, a surprising entry is the Black Devil Disco Club album. It definitely seems now that it is gaining huge popularity as more people discover and stick to it.

01 V.A. Before Sleep
02 Gonzales - Solo Piano
03 Black Devil Disco Club
04 Iron & Wine - Our Endless Numbered Days
05 Dan Deacon - Spiderman of the Rings
06 Max Tundra - Mastered By The Guy At The Exchange
07 White Noise - An Electric Storm
08 Konono No1 - Congotronic
09 Dr. John - Gris-Gris
10 Andrew Bird's Bowl Of Fire - Oh! The Grandeur
11 V.A. Shadow Music of Thailand
12 I-F - V.A. Mixed Up In The Hague
13 Morphine - Cure For Pain
14 V.A. Disco Not Disco
15 Senor Coconut And His Orchestra - Yellow Fever
16 Astro Can Caravan - 21st Century Drifting Episode
17 Murcof - Martes
18 Tom Waits - 60 Raindogs Compilation
19 Ethiopiques - Ethiopia Bleeding
21 Eden Ahbez - Eden's Island
22 Clara Rockmore - Art of Theremin
23 V.A. Bleeding Africa
24 Ricardo Villalobos - Fabric 36
25 Monstruoso Instrumentale Vol. 01

Monday, February 1, 2010

Clark - Totems Flare (2009)

Totems Flare


ALBUM REVIEW by Brian Howe:

Think about the basic properties of beat-oriented electronic music. It emphasizes dynamic action, feelings of speed, impressions of light-- extremes and intricacies of sensation. It tweaks your senses with creative deformations of time and space, with strictly engineered frameworks lurking beneath sleek or gaudy facades. And as Simon Reynolds credibly argued in Energy Flash/Generation Ecstasy, it strives to create experiences instead of describing them. Doesn't it sound a lot like the state fair, and make it seem crazy that tinny speakers still blast mostly rock, rap, and country hits across the rides? Imagine Lindstrøm's slopes and plunges on your roller coaster; the Field's nested spins on the Tilt-A-Whirl.

In an obscure corner of the midway, Chris Clark mans the funhouse. He lays out certain conditions-- dark twisty passageways, treacherous stairs, and moving platforms-- but doesn't suggest that you experience them in any particular way. His songs are divided into bizarre chambers of clashing design. He's the rare case where a heavy-handedly metaphorical approach like this seems defensible. In interviews, Clark holds forth at length on process and ideas while neatly sidestepping taxonomical points. He has his go-to tricks: His specialty is the cataclysmic anthem, cobbled together from homemade break beats, glitchy jags of Euro- and acid-house, pockets of concussive noise, honeycombed synth lines, and contoured masses of distortion, all piled up in lunging heaps of coarse texture. He really doesn't seem to make any type of music, which means that there's no background proposition or guideline, and metaphor might be the only way to talk about it. As in the funhouse, you have to make your own way through.

Clark's voice works best when he uses it like just another sound source; say, as a stuttering, FX-laden pulse in "Look Into the Heart Now". Your attention is drawn to details like this because the compositions often feel under-imagined as songs. The aforementioned tracks make the first half of the album feel jumbled and cluttered. The fizzy syncopation of opener "Outside Plume" is enticing, but its lumbering synths and beat-dropping tangents thwart its momentum. Things do start coming together after the utilitarian vamp "Luxman Furs": "Totem Crackerjack" uses gusts of noise to enhance, not derail, its cadence, and has a confidently measured stride that carries it intelligibly from breakneck drums to delicate arpeggios. The home stretch has a satisfying continuity-- the revved-up but beatific "Future Daniel" runs into the rewinding ambiance of "Primary Balloon Landing"; the dark drive of "Talis" and "Suns of Temper" dissolves into the gentle guitar whorls of closer "Absence". That's how funhouses are supposed to work-- we know the chaos is an illusion, designed for our enjoyment by an orderly hand. Otherwise, they're just confusing and enervating.

Read the full review:

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