themilkman on Dec 22nd 2011 12:59 pm

The 2011 Review

As another year folds out, it is time once again to look back and take stock or the highs and lows, before a fresh year rolls in. 2011 has had its moments and has overall been a rather good year, and trying to extract a list of twenty albums from the hundreds, thousands possibly, that I have listened to, loved, hated, reviewed or not, tried to make sense of or misunderstood seems a pretty restrictive effort at best. Still, it is always good to look back and realise that some records have made more of a mark than others, some almost imperceptibly. So, here is, in twenty records, what 2011 was made of…

Jenny Hval: Viscera1.

Rune Grammofon


There is such urgency throughout this record that it is quite astonishing how Hval manages to retain any lightness in her music, but she does, and [Helge] Sten picks up on just enough to bring it all to life in sprightly bright colours and tones. Continue Reading »

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ÆTHENOR: En Form For Blå (VHF Records)

themilkman on Jan 25th 2011 01:38 am

Æthenor: En Form For Blå

En Form For Blå
VHF Records 2011
07 Tracks. 54mins29secs

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

Æthenor is a variable geometry supergroup centred around the nucleus of guitarist Stephen O’Malley (SunnO))), Burning Witch, KTL) and multi-instrumentist Daniel O’Sullivan (Guapo, Monolith, Ulver). Over the years, various musicians have either contributed occasionally or been fairly permanent fixtures, the most regular of these being Vincent De Roguin, who contributed to all three of the band’s studio recordings. He is however absent on En Form For Blå, but O’Malley and O’Sullivan are here joined by drummer Steve Noble (Rip Rig & Panic) and Ulver front man Kristoffer Rygg.

Unlike the formation’s three previous records, which were all the result of studio improvisations, collected in just a handful of compositions, often spanning the best part of ten minutes, this latest offering documents three live performances recorded at Oslo’s seminal jazz and experimental venue BlÃ¥ in April and June last year, yet the band follow here a similar improv-based concept, but add a level of tension which had remained until now fairly guarded. Continue Reading »

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