Archive for October, 2008

LUOMO: Convivial (Huume Recordings)

themilkman on Oct 30th 2008 01:44 am

Luomo: Convivial

Huume Recordings 2008
09 Tracks. 66mins47secs

Alongside running his own label, Huume Recordings, and crafting some of the finest minimal textural electronic music around as Vladislav Delay, Berlin-based Finnish musician Sasu Ripatti has also been busy on countless other fronts over the years, from the club-orientated Uusitalo and collaborations with the likes of AGF and Craig Armstrong (The Dolls) or with Mika Vainio, Derek Shirley and Lucio Capece as Vladislav Delay Quartet. As Luomo, his focus is on space-age pop/dance music infused with razor-sharp grooves and wonderfully warm melodies. The resulting disco-tech was first showcased on the album Vocalcity in 2000, which featured six minimal epic pieces, all clocking at around ten minutes or more and appear to combine the edgy touches of underground dance music and the density of his Vladislav Delay records. Subsequent released refined this original template, bringing the songs back to more common time frames and softening the stark techno grooves a tad. On The Present Lover, released in 2003, and Paper Tigers (2006), Ripatti opted for a more atmospheric sound which, while still relying on club forms, presented a more subtle angle, at times close to his work as Vladislav Delay. Continue Reading »

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SQUAREPUSHER: Just A Souvenir (Warp Records)

themilkman on Oct 28th 2008 01:15 am

Squarepusher: Just A Souvenir

Just A Souvenir
Warp Records 2008
14 Tracks. 44mins24secs

The godfather of drill’n’bass is back once more, with his twelfth album, Just A Souvenir. Since he first appeared, in the mid nineties, with a series of EPs for Spymania, amongst others, and his debut album, Feed Me Weird Things, released on Richard D. James’s Rephlex, Tom Jenkinson has continuously remained close to his manic junglistic roots while exploring a variety of sonic spaces, at times digging toward funkier or more rave-infused sources, and at others sticking to jazzier and more improvised forms. His last album however, Hello Everything, published over two years ago, denoted quite a change of tone, with the melody becoming much more of a fundamental element of the compositions.

Just A Souvenir is said to have been inspired by a dream Jenkinson had earlier this year about a rock band playing an ‘ultra-gig’, whatever that is. The album was then recorded in just two weeks, and sees Jenkinson injecting a big dollop of psychedelic rock and eighties electro into his usual jazz-infused electronica. Continue Reading »

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OUR BROTHER THE NATIVE: Parting Marrows (Fat-Cat Records)

themilkman on Oct 23rd 2008 12:51 am

Our Brother The Native: Parting Marrow

Parting Marrows
Fat-Cat Records 2008
05 Tracks. 21mins28secs
Format: Digital

Close in essence to CocoRosie and Animal Collective, the first output from Our Brother The Native, Tooth & Claw, released over two years ago, already showed strong signs of creative flair, especially for a band formed by three teenagers scattered around the US, who only met in the flesh for their first live set, shortly after the album was released. They returned earlier this year with the much darker and challenging Make Amends For We Are Merely Vessels, which swapped the glittering broken folk of their previous effort for slices of tortured spaced-out post rock.

With Parting Marrows, Joshua Bertram, John-Michael Foss and Chaz Knapp return to more purely pastoral tones, but this digital-only EP marks yet another departure, this time toward slightly bohemian moods. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Oct 22nd 2008 12:39 am

Dark Captain Light Captain: Miracle Kicker

Miracle Kicker
LOAF/Lo Recordings 2008
10 Tracks. 43mins38secs

With just three singles under their belt, London-based Dark Captain Light Captain have rapidly established themselves as one of the best new bands the capital has produced recently, gaining praises and accolades from the likes of Zane Lowe (Radio 1), Mark Radcliffe (Radio 2) and John Kennedy (XFM) amongst others, and their recent single Circles was described by Pete Tong as being ‘a thing of aural beauty’.

Originally the project of guitarist and vocalist Dan Carney and multi-instrumentist Neil Kleiner, DCLC now also count the talents of Giles Littleford (guitar, voice), Chin Of Britain (drums), Mike Cranny (bass, voice) and Laura Copsey (brass, voice). On their debut album, Miracle Kicker, the band weave a rich patchwork of lightly psychedelic vocal harmonies, swirling melodies and swiping acoustic arrangements, peppered with discreet electronic brushes. Continue Reading »

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B12: Last Days Of Silence: Remixes (B12 Records)

themilkman on Oct 16th 2008 12:11 am

B12: Last Days Of Silence Remixes

Last Days Of Silence: Remixes
B12 Records 2008
08 Tracks. 40mins13secs

After years of silence, Mike Golding and Steve Rutter returned three years ago, initially to play a handful of live dates. Last year, they delivered their first new material since their 1998 3EP, and, a few months later, the release of Last Days Of Silence cemented their come back. In the early nineties, the pair, operating under a variety of guises, spearheaded the so-called intelligent dance music scene by bringing flavours from Detroit and giving them a British twist. Originally released on their own B12 imprint, their work was consequently incorporated in Warp’s seminal Artificial Intelligence series with their debut album, Electro-Soma, released in 1993.

As they gear up to release the entire B12 Records back catalogue for the first time on CD, B12 present six reworked tracks from Last Days Of Silence and two previously unreleased compositions on this remix album, also released as a limited edition 4-track picture disc twelve inch EP. Continue Reading »

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YOSHIO MACHIDA: Hypernatural #3 (Baskaru)

themilkman on Oct 14th 2008 12:34 am

Yoshio Machida: Hypernatural #3

Hypernatural #3
Baskaru 2008
08 Tracks. 53mins42secs

Yoshio Machida began working on his Hypernatural series in 1997. The first volume in the series was self-released two years later, and the second came out in 2001, on German label Softl Music. Since the Tokyo-based artist has been busy with other experimental projects and has released a handful of records on his own imprint, Amorfon, but this year sees the third and final part of the series.

The first Hypernatural release focused on memory in Eastern Asia, while the second investigated the concepts of transparency, unconsciousness and invisible existence. With Hypernatural #3, Machida turns his attention to oblivion as a one of the many processes of life. Creating sonic pieces from field recordings, electronics and acoustic instruments, Machida presents a captivating journey through tightly held organic sound formations which incorporate essentially natural elements, which, although heavily processed, retain some elements of their original aspect. Continue Reading »

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ADVENTURE: Adventure (Carpark Records)

David Abravanel on Oct 12th 2008 10:42 pm

Adventure: Adventure

Carpark 2008
11 Tracks. 37mins19secs

Carpark Records artists are kind of like games for a Nintendo Wii.  There’s more than enough cuteness to go around, some hipsters stuck in kidulthood, and lots of far-out nonlethal weaponry (read: lo-fi and chip tune synths).  There’s even a Mario figure, in the form of mascot / oddity / unsettling manchild Dan Deacon.  If this metaphor is to be carried even further (and guess what – it is!) then someone needs to be Link, the little questing elfin hero from the Zelda series.  So, why the hell not, how about Benny Boeldt?

Right off the bat, Boeldt fits into the mode of the dungeon scourer – he’s chosen the moniker “Adventure” for his musical forays. Continue Reading »

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HENNING SCHMIEDT: Klavierraum (Flau)

Max Schaefer on Oct 10th 2008 12:25 am

Flau 2008
15 Tracks.  61mins01secs

As his wife’s belly bloomed, pianist Henning Schmiedt similarly filled her room with chirruping meander-melodies that alternated with low-end frequencies like the earth’s crust fissuring and climaxing with seesawing hypno-patterns.

Schmiedt is an accomplished pianist, composer, and arranger, having studied music in Rostock, and having since scored works for several films and theatre productions. Continue Reading »

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JUANA MOLINA: Un Día (Domino Recording Co.)

themilkman on Oct 10th 2008 12:06 am

Juana Molina: Un Día

Un Día
Domino Recording Co. 2008
08 Tracks. 50mins25secs

Juana Molina’s musical career is light years away from Juana Y Su Hermanas, an early nineties hit TV series in Latin America and Spain in which she held the main part and which made of her a household name in her native land. Since, Molina has taken a very different path, turned her back on popular stardom to reach a much more selective audience with delicate atmospheric pop/folk songs, tainted with occasional electronics and experimental brushes. With each of her four albums, released within a period of ten years, three of which on the excellent Domino imprint, she has continued to carved an utterly individual and personal niche for herself, and her latest offering, Un Día, sits almost perfectly in line with its predecessors. Continue Reading »

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EIVIND OPSVIK: Overseas III (Loyal Label)

themilkman on Oct 7th 2008 12:20 am

Eivind Opsvik: Overseas III

Overseas III
Loyal Label 2008
07 Tracks. 53mins08secs

With his first two albums as leader, Overseas, published on Fresh Sound New Talent in 2003, and its follow-up, Overseas II (FSNT, 2005), Norwegian-born jazz bassist Eivind Opsvik created a unique sonic universe which, although firmly set within contemporary jazz grounds, freely fed on rock, pop to ambient. Since, Opsvik has been involved in a variety of projects, of which perhaps the most prominent is his collaboration with guitarist Aaron Jennings, with whom he has released two albums to date.

Now returning with the full Overseas formation for a third slice of fine contemporary jazz like only Scandinavians musician can create. But, having lived in New York for ten years, Opsvik’s work is tainted with unique flavours. Continue Reading »

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HAUSCHKA: Ferndorf (Fat-Cat Records/130701)

themilkman on Oct 2nd 2008 12:45 am

Hauschka: Fendorf

Fat-Cat Records/130701 2008
12 Tracks. 46mins11secs

The project of German composer and pianist Volker Bertelmann, Hauschka provides a space for him to explore the piano in all its prepared glory and go beyond the boundaries of classical music, which still serves as the basis for his work. Indeed, Bertelmann spent over ten years studying classical piano before embarking on a much more challenging and experimental journey. As Hauschka, he combines his academic expertise with a playful approach, which has led him to place cork crown on the string of his piano, wrapping the hammers with aluminium paper or sticking rubber or felt between the strings to draw all sorts of unusual sounds from his instrument of predilection. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Oct 1st 2008 12:36 am

Near The Parenthesis: L'eixample

n5MD 2008
09 Tracks. 53mins02secs

For his third album, San Francisco-based electronic musician Tim Amdt, who has been officiating under the strange pseudonym of Near The Parenthesis for a few years now, sought inspiration during a trip to Barcelona, and more particularly to the nineteenth century district of L’Eixample, renowned for its modernist architecture, including some of Gaudi’s best known buildings.

Having spent years in various formations through the years, Amdt finally established himself as a solo artist toward the beginning of the decade. His first album, Go Out And See, was published in 2006 on Canadian imprint Music Made By People, and was followed by an EP on Duotone that same year. Signed to n5MD shortly after, the second NTP album, Of Soft Construction, was released in 2007.

With L’Eixample, Amdt returns to the gentle atmospheric postcards that defined his previous outputs and expands on the already rich soundscapes and textures that served them. Continue Reading »

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