themilkman on Jan 4th 2010 12:17 am

10 years in 20 records

The noughties have seen probably the most radical changes in the music industries since the advent of the record. Consumption habits have dramatically moved from traditional to digital formats, music has been increasingly seen as something to steal rather than to buy, and listening habits means that nowadays, the album is becoming increasingly redundant. Or is it? Whereas it had, at least in some circles, become totally acceptable to fill records with substandard music, it is now essential for artists to create consistent pieces of work if they want to retain the attention of their audience. The last ten years have delivered their fair share of hits and misses, and this list doesn’t pretend to be in any way shape or form exhaustive. This is just, in no particular order, the definitive list of the 20 albums that have defined the noughties at themilkfactory.

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GERRY MITCHELL/VARIOUS PRODUCTION: The Invisible Lodger (Fire Records)

themilkman on Mar 10th 2009 10:56 pm

Gerry Mitchell/Various Production: The Invisible Lodger

The Invisible Lodger
Fire Records 2009
17 Tracks. 38mins41secs

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Some years ago, before The Black Dog became a three-headed entity again, Ken Downie teamed up with Scottish poet Black Sifichi on Unsavoury Products, weaving a densely layered electronic web around Sifichi’s haunting, claustrophobic or plain surreal poems, and his equally dense vocal inputs, for what remains his most uncompromising record to date. The secretive Various Production unit embarked on a very similar project when enlisting the services of another Scottish poet and artist, Gerry Mitchell, whose voice and texts sign-post the whole of this album, while VP warp their usual urban-flavoured electronic textures, tinted by occasional sweeping folk undercurrents, to soundtrack his contributions. Continue Reading »

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VARIOUS PRODUCTION: The World Is Gone (XL Recordings)

themilkman on Jul 11th 2006 03:01 pm

Various: The World Is Gone

The World Is Gone
XL Recordings 2006
12 Tracks. 46mins52secs

Difficult to find more vague a name for a band than Various. One can only imagine the headache of finding anything relevant on Amazon or Google. That is however the disconcerting choice that have made this enigmatic act. Having released three impeccable singles in the last few months, Various found themselves amidst a battle of A&Rs and labels, including Leaf, Warp and Planet Mu apparently, all fighting for the privilege of bringing them to a wider audience. Having finally signed with XL Recordings, the band are now unleashing their magnificent debut album. Continue Reading »

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