Friday, August 28, 2009

Out Hud - S.T.R.E.E.T. D.A.D.

Label: Kranky
Released: 2002
Style: House, Abstract, Indie Rock, Experimental, Disco

"Here it is, the first kranky release aimed at your ass as well as your head. Out Hud deliver the rhythm and the restraint; recalling the dry, brittle funk of early 80s UK post-punk, Sherwood’s beat-mashing across the On-U Sound catalog and even acid house and hip hop. The five piece doesn’t sound hopelessly retro or preciously muso. At the core is an airtight, energetic live band transformed in the mix into a pounding system with a wide melodic range." - Boomkat


1 Story Of The Whole Thing (4:58)
2 Dad, There's A Little Phrase Called Too Much Information (7:30)
3 This Bum's Paid (5:04)
4 Hair Dude, You're Stepping On My Mystique (4:21)
5 The L Train Is A Swell Train And I Don't Want To Hear You Indies Complain (12:19)
6 "My Two Nads" (Dad Reprise) (4:43)


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Chihei Hatakeyama - Saunter

Label: Room40
Released: 2009
Style: Ambient, Acoustic

"Saunter is in some ways an auditory interpretation of the monochromatic Chinese painting style ‘Sansui-Ga’. An approach concerned with the themes of landscape, ‘Sansui-Ga’ seeks to express a sense of philosophical consideration for the form and shape.

Saunter follows this approach, casting out lush layers of texture that seem to sound out the edges of landscape. The sounds dynamic fluctuations suggesting structures, trees, fields and other aspects dotting the landscape in which Hatakeyama finds himself.

Focused particularly on the transition from Fall to Winter, this record is a graceful and considered work. Elegantly crafted with an attention to subtle melodic variation and harmonic richness Saunter is a ‘visionary’ collection from one of Japan’s finest composers." - Label


1 Treads Echoing Far Away From Sea Coast (7:17)
2 The Room In Past (9:27)
3 Images Of Broken Light (8:29)
4 A Stone Inside The Box (5:06)
5 Small Pond (4:22)
6 Landscape On A Hill (8:32)


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Klaus Schulze - Moondawn

Label: Brain
Released: 1976
Style: Electro, Experimental, Ambient

"Klaus Schulze is one of the most legendary e-musicians of all time. He is also one of the best and most original. Moondawn is one of the true classics of the genre. For many serious listeners, this was the first and/or most important electronic music purchase. There is good reason for such sentiment — this is a great album. It is definitely hardcore Berlin school electronica and much more. Like his contemporaries, Schulze added some extra flair to his style. This album has loads of ambient atmospheres accompanying the deep sequences. While the original album is an analog creation, it still holds its own with new millennium digitalia and is uniquely old school. This CD bears comparisons only to Schulze's peers of its era: Jean Michel Jarre, Tangerine Dream, Edgar Froese, T.O.N.T.O.'s Expanding Head Band, and Mother Mallard's Portable Masterpiece Company." - Allmusic


1 Floating (27:15)
2 Mindphaser (25:22)


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Scott Tuma & Mike Weis - Taradiddle

Label: Digitalis Recordings
Released: 2009
Style: Abstract, Drone, Folk, Experimental, Ambient

"Weis is the drummer in Zelienople, and since Zelienople never had much cause for a proper drummer, Weis manages to be super creative behind the kit, or maybe more accurately, with an arsenal of cymbals and gongs and chimes, creating textures and layers more than rhythms. Which is precisely what he brings to this collaboration. Tuma is of course doing what he does best, weaving lush landscapes of sound, his guitar keening and moaning, drifting and twanging, sounding underwater one minute, weightless and spacey the next, those sounds are given a whole new context when paired with Weis's unique percussion. The drums here seem to consist mostly of a sort of soft cacophony, manic skitter, clouds of tinkling chimes, bowed cymbals, the deep tones of BIG cymbals or gongs, plenty of clatter and clang, but all sort of smeared into a living backdrop, reacting and interacting with Tuma's guitar, the result is often like a strange Souled American free jazz mashup, which might not sound good, but actually is, although elsewhere the results are a bit more subtle than that.

The guitars slip from hazy and underwater sounding, to gently shimmering, acoustic guitars unfurl woozy Appalachia, bits of twang, soft strums, all gently laid over a sea of skitter and thump, the deep shimmer of reverberating metals, the result is gorgeously murky and indistinct, less like two players playing off of each other, and more like two people contributing to the same sprawling sound. The first side plays out like the two getting acquainted, a delicate dance, their unique sounds quickly finding common ground and melting seamlessly into each other, culminating in a gorgeous track of hushed minimalism, introducing piano, Weis's percussion kept to a whispered thrum, everything wreathed in lush reverb and delay, so lovely.

The second side, features several longish tracks, where Tuma gets to try something a little more distorted and aggressive, the duo creating extended bouts of deep ominous dronemusic and thick caustic buzz, each player's contributions still distinct, at least with close listening, but step back, and the various parts take on surprising shapes, long stretches of heaving, droning, mesmerizingly meditative and surprisingly fluid drones, that manage to be warm and melodic as well as darkly mysterious. " - Aquarius Records


1 Dropsy (3:39)
2 Soire (2:25)
3 On Cox (2:20)
4 Off Bellows (1:34)
5 Tried (4:00)
6 Rubadub (6:00)
7 (Dub) (2:21)
8 Enearthed (7:05)


Friday, August 14, 2009

Laraaji - Ambient 3: Day Of Radiance

Label: Editions EG
Released: 1987
Style: Ambient

"Laraaji uses an open-tuned instrument with some degree of electrification (and, presumably, with studio enhancements courtesy of Eno), which creates a brilliant, full sound. The first three pieces, "The Dance, Nos. 1-3," are rhythmically charged and propulsive, with tinges of Irish hammered dulcimer music mixed with a dash of Arabic influence. The layered production gives them a hypnotically captivating quality and an echoing vastness, inducing a dreamlike state in which the listener happily bathes. The two parts of "Meditation" are arrhythmic, ethereal wanderings, still effective if less immediately riveting. Day of Radiance is considered an early new age masterpiece and, while it shares certain aspects with the genre (including a heady mystical aura), it has far more rigor, inventiveness, and sheer joy of playing than the great majority of its supposed descendents. It possesses a sense of timelessness that has enabled it to quite ably hold up over the years." - Allmusic


1 The Dance #1 (9:04)
2 The Dance #2 (9:46)
3 The Dance #3 (3:18)
4 Meditation #1 (18:38)
5 Meditation #2 (7:58)


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Gustavo Lamas - Mañana

Label: Kompakt
Released: 2000
Style: Ambient, Techno

"What is beautiful? Flowers, butterflies, diamonds, fluffy clouds, sunset, Kylie Minogue.... and Pop Ambient! Especially if it comes from Buenos Aires' finest: Gustavo Lamas. Already known for his fantastic releases on Traum and Fragil Discos (Argentina) he now presents his guest performance for Kompakt. Amazing dreamy textures layered around a subliminal groove. "Manana' means 'tomorrow'. It seems like there's a vision of a better one on the other side of this planet. Hi-tech-kitsch for all people that are sick of depressive IDM stuff." - Label


1 Mañana (4:16)
2 Jovenes (10:39)
3 Resbala (11:16)


Various - A Brief History Of Ambient Volume 1

Label: Virgin
Released: 1993
Style: Leftfield, Abstract, Space Rock, Ambient

"Although it seemed to arrive out of nowhere in the early '90s, ambient music actually has a long and varied history, leading back to Brian Eno and Kraftwerk's electronic experiments in the 1970s, right up to Aphex Twin's textural techno soundscapes. As an introduction and history lesson, the two-disc A Brief History of Ambient Music can't be beat; it shows that the ambient-techno trend has roots that most fans wouldn't even realize existed." - Allmusic


1-01 Harold Budd - Flowered Knife Shadows (7:05)
1-02 Tangerine Dream - Thru Metamorphic Rock (Edit) (9:46)
1-03 Robert Fripp / Brian Eno - Evening Star (7:30)
1-04 Amorphous Androgynous - Mountain Goat (4:28)
1-05 Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan - Sea Of Vapours (3:49)
1-06 Hawkwind - The Forge Of Vulcan (3:01)
1-07 Killing Joke - Requiem (A Floating Leaf Always Reaches The Sea Dub Mix) (10:35)
1-08 Brian Eno - An Ending (Ascent) (4:11)
1-09 Richard Horowitz - Marnia's Tent (2:58)
1-10 Irmin Schmidt & Bruno Spoerri - Rapido De Noir (6:32)
1-11 Ashra - Kazoo (5:36)
1-12 Harold Budd & Brian Eno - Their Memories (2:38)
1-13 The Grid - Leave Your Body (4:46)
1-14 Christopher Franke - Electric Becomes Eclectic (3:39)

2-01 Tangerine Dream - Phaedra (Edit) (10:25)
2-02 Jon Hassell & Brian Eno - Delta Rain Dream (3:20)
2-03 William Orbit - The Monkey King (4:49)
2-04 Gong - Castle In The Clouds (1:02)
2-05 Hawkwind - Lifeform (1:40)
2-06 Laraaji - The Dance #2 (9:04)
2-07 Sheila Chandra - Sacred Stones (5:26)
2-08 Michael Brook - Earth Floor (4:44)
2-09 Faust - Läuft...Heisst Das Es Läuft Oder Es Kommt Bald...Läuft (3:19)
2-10 Jon Hassell - Gift Of Fire (4:41)
2-11 Material - The End Of Words (3:46)
2-12 Edgar Froese - Panorphelia (9:35)
2-13 Roger Eno - Voices (2:15)
2-14 Holger Czukay - Träum Mal Weider (7:21)
2-15 David Sylvian - Home (4:14)

Disc 1
Disc 2

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