Archive for March, 2011

HAUSCHKA: Salon Des Amateurs (130701/Fat-Cat Records)

themilkman on Mar 29th 2011 10:05 pm

Hauschka: Salon Des Amateurs

Salon Des Amateurs
130701/Fat Cat Records 2011
10 Tracks. 42mins19secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP Boomkat: CD | LP iTunes: DLD

Tangents are weird and wonderful things, drifting away from a main idea to explore another, with often only the slightest of common ground between them. Salon Des Amateurs is one such tangent for Volker Bertelmann. Barely a few months after he unleashed Foreign Landscapes, an album on which he abandoned the solitary prepared piano work he had until then been largely associated with to venture into more orchestral forms, Bertelmann returns with Salon Des Amateurs, an album on which he confronts contemporary classical music with dance references and occasional electronic brushes.

At the heart of this is Hauschka’s prepared piano, which is given an additional layer of oddity with the use of loops, which capture and repeat peripheral sounds (a recurring bouncing ping pong ball on Ping for instance), and electronic treatments, which allow Bertelmann to distort his sound further. Continue Reading »

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FRIEDMAN & LIEBEZEIT: Secret Rhythms 4 (Nonplace Records)

themilkman on Mar 29th 2011 01:20 am

Friedman & Liebezeit: Secret Rhythms 4

Secret Rhythms 4
Nonplace Records 2011
06 Tracks. 56mins36secs

Amazon UK: CD US: CD

The partnership between German electronic musician Burnt Friedman and legendary Can drummer Jaki Liebezeit, established almost ten years ago, is back in action once more, following the 5 7 EP released last year. This fourth instalment in the Secret Rhythms series continues on a similar path to its predecessors by bringing together rich rhythmic tones and rarefied electronic formations. More than ever centered around Liebezeit’s hypnotic drumming, Secret Rhythms 4 sees the pair move into more minimal, stripped down terrains, the rhythmic patterns forever more cyclical, repetitive and fluid, layered with fragments of electronics and guitars, themselves set into loops of varying intensity and length.

Four of the six tracks here go over the ten minute mark, with 182-11 clocking at just under sixteen minutes. This leaves the pair plenty of time to set their rhythmic structures in motion and work on the trance-like aspect of the groove of each track until it starts distorting the perception of its very nature. Continue Reading »

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VARIOUS ARTISTS: SMM: Context (Ghostly International)

themilkman on Mar 25th 2011 01:49 am

Various Artists: SMM: Context

SMM: Context
Ghostly International 2011
11 Tracks. 64mins52secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD

Anchored in Ann Arbor, a stone throw away from the Mecca of techno, Detroit, Ghostly International has, in the twelve years it has been operating, continuously ventured in and out of the dance culture and reached out into pop, ambient, hip-hop or experimental works by expanding its roster to include the likes of Schools Of Seven Bells, Syntaks, Tycho, Lusine, Dabrye, The Sight Below, Twine or Christopher Willits. While still very much an enigmatic acronym, the term SMM was apparently coined in 2004 by Ghostly to define the then emerging breed of music mixing classical forms with contemporary ambient electronica, a genre which has since been the forte of Miasmah in Norway, and less exclusively, Type in the UK.

The first in a new yearly compilation series from Ghostly, SMM: Context gathers a number of familiar names and attempts to chart a genre which boundaries are, almost by definition, somewhat hazy. Continue Reading »

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FABRIC: A Sort Of Radiance / BEE MASK: Laboratorio Del Silenzio Cosmico (Spectrum Spools)

themilkman on Mar 24th 2011 12:54 am

Fabric: A Sort Of Radiance Bee Mask: Laboratorio Del Silenzio Cosmico

A Sort Of Radiance
Spectrum Spools 2011
09 Tracks. 32mins59secs

Canzoni Dal Laboratorio Del Silenzio Cosmico
Spectrum Spools 2011
02 Tracks. 28mins45secs

A Sort Of Radiance
Amazon UK: LP | DLD US: LP | DLD Boomkat: LP | DLD
Canzoni Dal Laboratorio Del Silenzio Cosmico
Amazon UK: LP | DLD US: LP | DLD Boomkat: LP | DLD

Set up in collaboration with Editions Mego, Spectrum Spools is a new imprint from Emeralds’ John Elliott dedicated to ‘current, past and future electronic music works of the highest quality’, presented in glorious vinyl-only releases. With an inaugural set of releases counting the most recent efforts from Chicago-based musician Matthew Mullane, who, while best known as a guitarist, is also regularly found toying with electronics, and the latest installment from Chris Madak’s Bee Mask, Spectrum Spools positions itself as an imprint with a taste for sprawling electronic works. Both demonstrate an undeniable affinity with experimental electronic music as it was in its early days, when mavericks such as Pierre Schaeffer, Pierre Henry or Karlheinz Stockhausen were pioneering new forms of music in the fifties, sixties and seventies, or when the following generation was bringing it to the masses through the kosmische movement of the seventies. But it is what Matthew Mullane and Chris Madak do with these influences which is remarkable, each using vintage electronic forms into very contemporary settings. Continue Reading »

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PHAEDRA: The Sea (Rune Grammofon)

themilkman on Mar 22nd 2011 01:34 am

Phaedra: The Sea

The Sea
Rune Grammofon 2011
08 Tracks. 38mins48secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Norman Records: CD | LP iTunes: DLD

Beside the challenging experimental work that they have been gathering for over ten years, Rune Grammofon have, on occasions, opened their doors to female songstresses, of which Susanna Wallumrød, with or without her Magical Orchestra, is undoubtedly the best known. Now joining Wallumrød and Hilde Marie Kjersem, who released her second album, A Killer For That Ache, on the label in 2008, is Phaedra, with a stunning debut album, The Sea, a collection of gentle aerial psychedelic folk-infused songs.

Phaedra is the solo project of Norwegian singer songwriter Ingvild LanggÃ¥rd. A former student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Oslo, LanggÃ¥rd has worked with a number of media over the years, from films and photography to art installations and vocal work. Continue Reading »

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AUTECHRE: EPS 1992-2002 (Warp Records)

themilkman on Mar 18th 2011 01:22 am

Autechre: EPs 1992-2002

EPS 1991-2002
Warp Records 2011
47 Tracks. 339mins59secs

Amazon UK: CD US: CD iTunes: DLD

For years, Autechre alternated albums and EPs with extreme regularity, the latter often acting as experimental playgrounds for Sean Booth and Rob Brown to try out new ideas. This release documents the first ten years of the band, from their very first, pre-Warp, outting to Gantz Graf. While Autechre have continued to release occasional EPs after that, they have been less prolific with that format in recent years, only two, Quaristice.Quadrange and Move Of Ten, having materialised, the former solely made available as a digital release, both counting too many tracks to be considered proper EPs. Continue Reading »

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STIMMING: Liquorice (Diynamic Music)

themilkman on Mar 16th 2011 12:29 am

Stimming: Liquorice

Diynamic Music 2011
13 Tracks. 42mins17secs

Amazon UK: CD US: CD Boomkat: CD

Hailing from Hamburg, Germany, Martin Stimming first appeared in 2006 as one half of Gebrüder Ton, a duo also formed of Alexander Kübler, with whom he released a number of EPs, then later as part of Orli & Martie, with Oliver Brusch, before eventually going it alone. In the last four years Stimming has published a number of EPs, mostly for Diynamic, which showed a taste for classic linear laid back techno grooves and stripped down soundscapes. These were further developed on his debut album, Reflections (2009).

There is almost nothing of his usual clean cut minimal techno on his latest offering. Instead, he adopts a much looser set up based around extremely diverse sound sources and field recordings. Continue Reading »

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LUCIANO MAGGIORE & FRANCESCO ‘FUZZ’ BRASSINI: Chàsm’ Achanès (Huge Abyss) (Boring Machines)

themilkman on Mar 11th 2011 01:33 am

Luciano Maggiore & Francesco 'fuzz' Brasini: Chàsm’ Achanès (Huge Abyss)

Chàsm’ Achanès (Huge Abyss)
Boring Machines 2011
01 Track. 35mins46secs

Amazon UK: CD

Foghorns are not a usual source of inspiration in music, yet it seems to be exactly what Italian experimental musicians Luciano Maggiore and Francesco ‘fuzz’ Brasini had in mind for the base concept for this collaborative effort.

Recorded in one take, with Maggiore on electronics and tape recorders, and Brasini on guitars, of the home made variety, in Cesena, a small town on the north-east coast of Italy, Chàsm’ Achanés counts just one thirty five minute track over which hangs the sombre rumbling tone of a loud recurring drone, drenched in reverbs, akin to a foghorn warning ships of an invisible hazard. Continue Reading »

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LYDIA LUNCH & PHILIPPE PETIT: Twist Of Fate (Monotype Records) / PHILIPPE PETIT: Philippe Petit Scores Henry: The Iron Man (Aagoo Records)

themilkman on Mar 10th 2011 08:47 pm

Lydia Lunch & Philippe Petit: Twist Of Fate Philippe Petit: Philippe Petit Scores Henry: The Iron Man

Twist Of Fate
Monotype Records 2011
08 Tracks. 47mins34secs / 06 Chapters. 43mins01secs

Philippe Petit Scores Henry: The Iron Man
Aagoo Records 2011
03 Tracks. 40mins17secs

Amazon UK: DLD US: DLD Boomkat: CD + DVD iTunes: DLD
PHILIPPE PETIT: Philippe Petit Scores Henry: The Iron Man
Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | DLD iTunes: DLD

Twist Of Fate documents the creative partnership between American songstress, poet, writer and actress Lydia Lunch and French experimental sound artist and turntablist Philippe Petit across an album and a DVD. Lunch emerged in the mid-seventies as part of No Wave combo Teenage Jesus And The Jerks, which formed in New York in 1976, and has maintained the same fiercely individual and independent spirit for over thirty years. Her considerable body of work spans countless solo records, collaborations with anyone from Einstürzende Neubauten, Henry Rollins or Sonic Youth to Oxbow and Omar Rodríguez-López, as well as numerous films, books and plays.

A journalist, record label owner and musician, Philippe Petit has been a figure of the underground music scene for over twenty five years, yet his first solo release, Henry: The Iron Man, only came out in 2009. Since though, he has delivered a number of essential records on labels such as Boring Machines, Aagoo, Sub Rosa or Trace Recordings, collaborating with numerous artists and musicians often operating as Philippe Petit & Friends. He his also one of the masterminds behind Strings Of Consciousness, a loose collective counting some twenty more or less regular members.

On Twist Of Fate, the pair bring together their respective sonic universe into a bleak and disturbing soundtrack. Continue Reading »

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EMANUELE ERRANTE: Time Elapsing Handheld (Karaoke Kalk)

themilkman on Mar 9th 2011 01:20 am

Emanuele Errante: Time Elapsing Handheld

Time Elapsing Handheld
Karaoke Kalk 2011
07 Tracks. 44mins10secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD

The boundary between leftfield atmospheric electronica and modern classical is forever getting more blurred as musicians cross-pollinate each genre with elements borrowed from the other. Composers such as Max Richter, Jóhann Jóhannsson or Ólafur Arnalds have done a lot to democratise the use of electronic textures and field recordings in classical music through their respective work, while on the other side, the likes of Murcof, Deaf Center or much of the Miasmah roster have incorporated classical forms and instruments into their electronic set up. One such musician is Italian experimental sound artist Emanuele Errante, whose previous two albums, Migrations (Apegenine, 2006) and Humus (Somnia, 2008), treaded the line between electronica and classical rather convincingly, drawing comparison to Deaf Center, Marsen Jules and Rafael Anton Irisarri amongst others. Continue Reading »

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JUV: Juv (Miasmah Recordings)

themilkman on Mar 8th 2011 01:12 am

Juv: Juv

Miasmah Recordings 2011
13 Tracks. 73mins08secs

Amazon UK: CD | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | DLD iTunes: DLD

The story behind this record is as odd and unusual as its content. Toward the end of the nineties, two Norwegian teenagers, Are Mokkelbost and Marius von der Fehr, were experimenting with dense guitar textures and bleak drones, but for one reason or another, the relationship collapsed before any music could be released, leaving the recordings they had gathered in the couple of years they worked together unfinished and abandoned, bound to never be heard. Fast-forward to 2009, when Mokkelbost, now a firmly established musician, happened to come across these long lost tapes and, having realised the potential of the music documented, decided to get back in touch with von der Fehr and the pair got down to work, editing down the wealth of material into an album, finally completing the work.

The particularly dark abrasive textures and bleakscapes collected here feel very much at home on Miasmah. Continue Reading »

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themilkman on Mar 7th 2011 09:49 pm


Arandel goes a long way to protect his identity, from performing behind a sheet to posing for publicity shot whilst wearing a mask. With his first album, In D, released last year on InFiné, he aimed to create a techno-infused record using only sounds of real instruments which he had sampled himself. Followed a string of remix digital EPs which are now about to be collected onto an album, due to be released in the coming weeks. Here, he talks about the need to remain anonymous, the challenges of working with real instruments, his influences and what Arandel could be like as a live formation. Continue Reading »

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