Friday, April 10, 2009

Alva Noto - Xerrox Vol.2

Label: Raster-Noton
Released: 2009
Style: Experimental, Ambient

"Part two of Alva Noto's Xerrox series takes up right where the last one left off, continuing on in a much more buzzy, blissy, droney vein, way more textural and melodic than many of the AN records that have come before. In the review of volume one we mentioned Pop Ambient, and if anything volume 2 is even more washed out and shimmery, right out of the gate, AN offers up a warm wash of muted buzz, and thick gristly whir, softly pulsating, layered and warm, seemingly gone are the harsh tones and glitchy clicks and pops found on most Raster-Noton releases. Could be that Xerrox is just a concept record, but we have to say, as much as we loved the clipped minimalism of other Alva Noto records, the sounds here are quite divine. But this is an Alva Noto record, so even these warm whirls of drifting ambience, are laced with bits of static and hiss, super high end sine waves, but they're woven deftly into the sound, and serve to simply add more texture. There's a brief bit of super minimal beep and rumble, but then it's right back into that gorgeous drifty haze, that could just as soon be a Tim Hecker record.

"Xerrox Meta Phaser" follows suit, at least in the beginning, a soft whirring soundscape, that quickly escalates into an almost Sunn like dirge before exploding into a squall of blown out white noise. And then we're back to the dreamy dronemusic, this time, stretched out strings, smeared into soft summery swells, laced with a patina of gritty hiss, and so it goes, the whole record is a dark swirling expanse of muted minimal melodies, warm textures, mysterious drones, and delicate hazy drifts, the usual glitch and buzz, relegated to accents and filigree, rarely interfering in the rest of the record's blissy sprawl. Any one of these tracks would be right at home on the newest, more Kranky-fied Pop Ambient comp, and thus, this might be the first Raster-Noton record that might just appeal to all the drone and dirge folks as much as the glitch and pop people." - Aquarius Records


1 Xerrox Phaser Acat 1 (12:11)
2 Xerrox Rin (0:51)
3 Xerrox Soma (7:11)
4 Xerrox Meta Phaser (6:23)
5 Xerrox Sora (6:54)
6 Xerrox Monophaser 1 (8:04)
7 Xerrox Monophaser 2 (5:31)
8 Xerrox Teion (2:03)
9 Xerrox Teion Acat (5:26)
10 Xerrox Tek Part 1 (5:28)
11 Xerrox Monophaser 3 (6:14)


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O. - 41st Century Splendid Man Returns

Label: Essence Music
Released: 2007
Style: Noise, Psychedelic Rock

"Motorik krautrock rhythms work side by side with interstellar signals, ghostly female voices and analog synths. Bursts of damaged psych brilliance and free guitars open and seal the album, healing the aural wounds for/from the mammoth droney, mysterious and transcendental ambient experience of the title track, built with the aid of a non traditional array of instruments, like sarangi, sitar, zurna and tibetan trumpet. Definately not of this world.

This is one of the many incarnations of the band, a combo also featuring, at the time of the recordings, the beautiful vocals of Cotton Casino and the appearance of Tatsuya Yoshida from Ruins as one of the special guests. As always, monster guitarist and mastermind Kawabata Makoto leads the troup to ensure a safer trip." - Label


1 Ruck Zuck (7:08)
2 41st Century Splendid Man (14:49)
3 Genesis Of Humanity (Amoebae - Volcanoes - Dinosaurs - Humanity - Civilization - War - Extinction - Robots) (9:15)
4 Dalai Gama (4:40)
5 Hello Eskimo Or Polyhedral Mu (14:21)


Kode 9 - Black Sun / 2 Far Gone

Label: Hyperdub
Released: 2009
Style: Dubstep

"Steve Goodman continues to shift his style towards the Funky light wih two more brilliant cuts for Hyperdub further removed from his previous dread bass dubstep explorations. 'Black Sun' is quite the shocker, sounding like the mutant basschild of Drexciya and 4 Hero with rippling junglist/dubstep subbass wrapped around a bobbling square-wave bassline and tucked under the tidiest rhythm syncopations this side of Anthony Shakir. That's not to mention the unruly synthline that just owns the whole thing, sounding like James Stinson jamming with Quartta 330 with a seriously ear-worming effect that will hold any audience captive for it's duration. It's seriously smart gear. The dread vibes of his previous work rears it's darkened head on flipside track '2 Far Gone', leaning heavily on the synthline vibes with murkily resonant pads building the tension before skip-swinging patterns find their groove and suck you into some irresistable dance inducing polyrhythms. The dislocated vocal intoning "'s too far gone" sets a severely ominous tone for the whole thing, balancing out the feminine and floor friendly rhythms with a skunked out paranoia dense and lush enough to fall madly in love with. This is a mindblowingly good single and we'd even say it outstrips its predecessor '2 Bad' quite easily. Obviously, if you like Burial, 4 Hero or Drexciya you really need to pick this up. Awesome." - Boomkat


1 Black Sun (5:25)
2 2 Far Gone (6:10)


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