Archive for July, 2011

AFRICA HITECH: 93 Million Miles (Warp Records)

themilkman on Jul 7th 2011 01:08 am

Africa Hitech: 93 Million Miles

AFRICA HITECH
93 Million Miles
WARPCD199
Warp Records 2011
11 Tracks. 58mins19secs

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

Africa Hitech dropped a substantial first EP of broken dubstep and hip-hop-infused grooves just over a year ago, setting the hype machine in full swing in the process. The project of Mark Pritchard (of Global Communication/Jedi Knights/Harmonic 313 fame) and Steve ‘Spacek’ White, the idea of Africa Hitech came out of a desire to blend Detroit techno, soul and Jamaican dancehall. This was first synthesized into the razor-sharp urban textures of Blen, which was followed a few weeks later by an even more hard-hitting second offering, Hitecherous.

Fast-forward a year, and 93 Million Miles takes the pair’s original template and expands it to full length format. Continue Reading »

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PHILIPPE PETIT: Off To Titan: A Rework Of Gustav Mahler’s Symphonic Poem (Karlrecords)

themilkman on Jul 6th 2011 12:34 am

Philippe Petit: Off To Titan: A Rework Of Gustav Mahler’s Symphonic Poem

PHILIPPE PETIT
Off To Titan: A Rework Of Gustav Mahler’s Symphonic Poem
KR006
Karlrecords 2010
03 Tracks. 59mins34secs

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

Philipe Petit’s Off To Titan is based on Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 1, often referred to as Titan, a piece he composed toward the end of the 1880s when he was in his mid twenties. The work was originally deemed a failure as it showcased some unconventional forms for the time, a view shared by Petit who sees it as a precursor to contemporary music. His reworking of Mahler’s symphony retains much of the original’s orchestral grandeur, but places it in a very different context, and highlights its cosmic perspective with added electronics. Working from a recording of the piece which he re-edits, distorts, stretches to alter its path, Petit applies various brush intensity throughout, at times seemingly restraining his interventions to let the music follow its natural course, at other more openly layering entire sections, adding electronic touches or distorting the source recording to create new musical components. Continue Reading »

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GORAN KAJFEŠ: X/Y (Headspin Recordings)

themilkman on Jul 5th 2011 01:20 am

Goran Kajfeš: X/Y

GORAN KAJFEŠ
X/Y
HEAD013
Headspin Recordings 2011
16 Tracks. 88mins26secs

Amazon UK: CD iTunes: DLD

Goran Kajfeš’s third album, his first released in the UK, is well and truly a game of two halves. On one side, X is a cheerful cinematic jazz album fueled by beautiful Eastern European melodies and instrumentation which stretches all the way to North Africa, the Middle East and beyond. On the other, Y is an introspective cinematic jazz album served by warm electronic textures upon which Kajfeš’s solitary trumpet builds wonderful dreamy sequences.

Born of Croatian parents, both pianists, Kajfeš grew up in Sweden. After developing a taste for classical music and learning the trumpet during his formative years, he turned to jazz as he reached adulthood. Since, he has performed with an impressive number of musicians and artists of international stature, from Lester Bowie or Stina Nordenstram to Eagle-Eye Cherry, Robyn or José Gonzales. He is also a permanent member of jazz quintet Oddjob, with whom he has released five albums in eight years. He first ventured out as a solo performer back in 2001 with his debut album, Home, which was followed three years later with Headspin. Continue Reading »

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GAGARIN: Biophilia (Geo Records)

themilkman on Jul 4th 2011 12:22 am

Gagarin: Geofilia

GAGARIN
Biophilia
GEO019
Geo Recoords 2011
11 Tracks. 50mins11secs

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

Not to be mistaken with Björk current monumental project of the same name, Biophilia is Gagarin’s fifth album, and follows recent K3KA-3/KEDR digital EP, which was released five days after the fiftieth anniversary of Yuri Gagarin becoming the first human being to orbit around the Earth. The two tracks, named after the code number of his spacecraft and his personal call sign respectively, the latter also featuring actual recordings of Gagarin’s flight communication, are also featured on this latest record, with which Gagarin (the musician) returns to his characteristically bare atmospheric electronica and continues in his attempt to establish a connection between nature and urban sprawls.

Gagarin is the solo project of Graham Dowdall, a drummer and percussionist who has played with a number of formations over the years, was a long term collaborator with Nico, and has in recent years been a member of electro-pop outfit Raf & O, who released their debut album last year, and began a collaborative project with Rothko’s Mark Beazley. Continue Reading »

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INTERVIEW: GORAN KAJFEŠ North By South East

themilkman on Jul 3rd 2011 06:32 pm

INTERVIEW: GORAN KAJFEŠ North By South East

Born of Croatian parents, both musicians, and raised in Sweden, trumpet player Goran Kajfeš has played with an impressive number of musicians and artists of international stature. As a solo musician, he has released two albums and his third, X/Y, a double album presenting two very different sides of his work, has just been published. We took the opportunity to talk with him about how his Balkan roots and Scandinavian upbringing influence his work, working with megastars, and how the two distinct sides of his new album are in fact complimentary. Continue Reading »

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BIOSPHERE: N-Plants (Touch)

themilkman on Jul 1st 2011 01:17 am

Biosphere: N-Plants

BIOSPHERE
N-Plant
TO84
Touch 2011
09 Tracks. 49mins49secs

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

What would happen if a nuclear power plant, located close to the sea, was hit by an earthquake or a tsunami? The story behind this album is nothing short of puzzling. In late 20101, whilst researching Japan in the optic of recording an album about the country’s post-Second World War economic miracle, Geir Jenssen stumbled upon a picture of the Mihama nuclear power plant, situated on a tiny peninsula on the west coast of Japan, just over three hundred kilometers west of Tokyo. The plant was still then the site of the worst nuclear disaster to have taken place in Japan, when, in 2004, hot water leaked from a broken pipe near one of the reactors, killing four people and injuring seven.The plant, situated in an otherwise beautiful spot prompted Jenssen to question exactly how safe such facility would be if it was hit by a quake or a tsunami. Further investigations revealed a number of other nuclear power stations located in earthquake-prone areas. This provided him with the focus for the record, his first in over five years. Continue Reading »

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