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VITAL WEEKLY
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number 527
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week 21
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Vital Weekly, the webcast: as an experiment for the time being, we offering a weekly webcast, freely to download. This can be regarded as the audio-supplement to Vital Weekly. Presented as a radioprogramm with excerpts of just some of the CDs (no vinyl or MP3) reviewed. It will remain on the site for a limited period (most likely 2-4 weeks). Download the file to your MP3 player and enjoy!
complete tracklist here: http://www.vitalweekly.net/podcast.html
you can subscribe to the weekly broadcast using the following rss feed:
http://www.harmlog.nl/vitalfeed.asp
New broadcasts will be sent directly when uploaded. For more information on
podcasts go here: http://ipodder.sourceforge.net/
* noted are in this week's podcast

 

 

THEME - OUR ANGELS DISLOCATED (CD by Lumberton Trading Company) *
HERVE BOGHOSSIAN/STEPHANE RIVES/MATTHIEU SALADIN - PLATEFORMS (CD by (1.8)sec Records) *
DAWID SZCZESNY - SNOW BEETROOT/STAPES I-III (3"CDR by (1.8)sec Records)
JOCELYN ROBERT - PANDORE - (4CD by Ambiances Magnetiques)
ANDREW DUKE - CONSUMER VS. USER (CD by Phthalo Records)
GODS OF ELECTRICITY - SUNDIVING (CD by Faith Strange) *
BAND OF PAIN - THROUGH THE PAST DARKLY (2CD by Fin de Siecle Media) *
ST.RIDE - PIUME CHE CADONO (CD by Zeit Interference) *
ENORE ZAFFIRI - LA VOCE ED IL SINTETIZZATORE (CD by Rossbin) *
THE GENTLEMAN LOSERS (CD by Büro)
VITAMINSFORYOU - THE LEGEND OF BIRD'S HILL (CD by Intr_Version) *
SNOG - VS THE FAECAL JUGGERNAUT OF MASS CULTURE (CD by Hymen Records)
THIS MORN' OMINA - LES PASSAGES JUMEAUX : LE 25IÈME DEGRÉ ~ LE 33IÈME DEGRÉ (2-CD by Ant-Zen Recordings)
URKUMA - REBUILDING PANTALEONE'S TREE (CD by Baskaru) *
(ETRE) - A POST-FORDIST PARADE IN THE STRIKE OF EVENTS (CD by Baskaru)
DJ OLIVE - SLEEP (CD by Room40) *
KEITH FULLERTON WHITMAN - TRACK 4 (2 WAYS SUPERIMPOSED) (CDEP by Room40)
YOAV GAL & YAEL KANAREK - BIT BY BIT, CELL BY CELL (CD by Innova)
MARK WASTELL - CARESSED ON THE BROW BY UNSEEN HANDS (CDR by L'Innomable) *
HINTERLANDT - NO FIXED ADDRESS (CDR by Neus 318) *
STORMHAT - VINDSPEJL (CDR by Cohort Records) *
FRAG-MIST - TUKUYOMI (CDR by Alienation)
PLEASUREHORSE - TAITSU [TIGHTS] (CDR by Alienation)
ANTHONY SAUNDERS - 102X04 (AS DRIFTING OF NIGHT INTO MORNING) (CDR by Alienation)
DAVID KENDALL - FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE (CDR by Alienation)
SUZY (CDR by Alienation)
THIRDORGAN - LALAHMANIA (CDR by Alienation)
RECONSTRUCTION OF RUINS ((CDR compilation by Alienation)
CADUCEUS - INFLUENCE VOLUME SEVEN (MP3 by Caduceus Music)
CLUB MORAL STOCKLIST (Podcast)

 

 

THEME - OUR ANGELS DISLOCATED (CD by Lumberton Trading Company)
And some people just take their time. A lot of time. And why not? Theme's first album 'On Parallel Shores Removed' was released in 2001 (see Vital Weekly 247) and after that things were mostly quiet, apart from an odd concert around my corner, which I sadly missed. Theme is a trio of Stuart Carter, Richard Johnson and Hassni Malik, formerly part of Splintered, in which they sliced guitar and field recordings together. On this new album, recorded over the course of four years in various places, they play sitar, guitar, piano, indian pipes, violin, keyboard, voices and field recordings. Unlike some (many?) others of the former UK noise/guitar scene, Theme works with an updated sound, taking notice of whatever is 'new' in the world of experimental music, without copying these new genres straight away. Rather they go back to their own instruments and to figure out how to play, say Pan Sonic, with the means they have. In 'Repeat To Fade', they succeed quite well. Theme connects the present and the past, taking their old influences and style figures into the newly found musical interests. Maybe the chanting at the end of 'East Of Now' sounds a bit ridiculous, through this second album Theme knows how to capture a great, dark atmosphere, without falling into the all to easily traps of 'dark ambient' or 'gloomy doomy music', but adding their own finely flavored sounds and interest. Both modern and old are united here in a more than excellent way. (FdW)
Address: http://www.lumbertontrading.com

HERVE BOGHOSSIAN/STEPHANE RIVES/MATTHIEU SALADIN - PLATEFORMS (CD by (1.8)sec Records)
DAWID SZCZESNY - SNOW BEETROOT/STAPES I-III (3"CDR by (1.8)sec Records)
The press release mentions 'Plateforms' to be the title, and the artists being Herve Boghossian (electric guitar), Stephane Rives (soprano saxophone) and Matthieu Saladin (amplified bass clarinet), whereas I though Plateforms was the name of the band. Either way, it's not really important. Boghossian runs also the List label, and has shown us a couple of times on his own label, his own radical sound approach. The label describes this trio in terms of 'free improvisational jazz', which is stretching terms a bit further. The three play around with the notion of feedback, long sustained sounds coming from their instruments, opening with a fiery high end tone, which abruptly, after a while, fades over into something very deep, bass end hum. Over the long course of this recording - a live one from june last year - you may recognize something that can indeed be a saxophone or a clarinet (the guitar keeps humming and is never strummed), moving carefully through all the various possibilities that feedback can offer. In a way the influence of Alvin Lucier is never far away, but what 'Plateforms' does is much less rigid in terms of concept and much more playful and within their self-chosen system of sound, indeed much more musical and open for repeated listening (something that is not always the case with Lucier's work). A fine, delicate woven work.
On the same label a work from the for me unknown Dawid Szczesny from Poland. He works with old LPs, tapes and field recordings. There are four pieces on his 3"CDR. The first is 'Snow Beetrot', which includes the guitar playing of Dawid Bargenda, with whom Dawid Szczesny plays live. The other three tracks are by Dawid Szczesny solo. All four tracks have a neat warm atmosphere about them, even when they are all made in the world of digital music. The guitar in 'Snow Beetrot' tinkles away, with some glitchy loops at the bottom. The other three tracks are based about loops, played live and which is ever changing configurations come by. They appear to be a bit more monochrome than 'Snow Beetrot' but work quite well. The third part of 'Stapes' is very short and seems only to be included as a disc-filler. Szczesny plays micro/glitch music in what that is already widely known, but does it considerably well. (FdW)
Address: http://www.1pt8.com

JOCELYN ROBERT - PANDORE - (4CD by Ambiances Magnetiques)
Robert is a sound artist from Quebec. Originally working as an architect he changed to music in the 80s. First results were released by the label of Chris Cutler, Re Records. In the 90s he founded with Christof Migone the Avatar collective, a center for soundart in Quebec.
Now Ambiances Magnetiques creates a new opportunity for learning more about his work. The box contains four different and extensive works. The set starts with '6 Drawers, 4 Spoons (Souk Souk)'. This work starts with environmental sounds, followed by gentle guitar-playing by Robert and Eric Gagnon, treated orchestral sounds, ethnic recordings, speeded up noisy rock, etc. At the end the guitar-playing returns.
CD two has a forty minute piece called 'Slow Sparks from the Split-voiced Buddha'. It begins and ends with a field recording of traditional singing by workers in Lhasa to and in between we hear what the title indicates 'slow sparks from the split-voiced buddha', in other words long sustained notes and drones that are derived from the field-recordings.
'Les Scaphandres which fills up the third CD is another 40 minute piece divided in 6 parts worked out Robert and Laetitia Sonami. Part one starts with very harsh noises. It deals with a text, but not approached as written language, but as a numerical object.
On CD four Robert cooperates with Louis Ouellet in '24 exercises de parallaxe'. 24 variations all of almost the same length for piano mécanique. Composition and computer programming make up the constitutive elements of this work. Of all four works this is the most 'musical' one in the traditional sense of the word.
No doubt a release of this format, offers a representative introduction to the work of Robert. But it may be a bit risky for the interested listener to start with this expensive release. Anyway, thank you Ambiances Magnétiques for this release. (DM)
Address: http://www.actruellecd.com/

ANDREW DUKE - CONSUMER VS. USER (CD by Phthalo Records)
The career from Andrew Duke started in 1987 and has never been quiet in any way since then: his own releases, his remixes (Aaliyah, Pink Floyd, Chicks On Speed to mention a few) and his concerts, plus the fact that he is 1981 writing about music. It's a vast amount of work that I must admit don't know in every possible detail, but that I off and on follow throughout the years. Here he has a record of rhythm based music. Important to know, since Duke sometimes does also more experimental drone based ones. But it's rhythm here and Duke plays not just one kind of rhythm oriented music, but from several different points of view. Some of the pieces are quite minimal along the lines of Kompakt or Plus8/Plastikman, but also beat stuff that involves a lot more, fucked up rhythm pieces that we found in the past on the Phthalo label itself. I must admit that the minimal pieces were the better ones, but perhaps the more chaotic, somewhat disorganized beats is just not my thing, and minimalism is. Music by Andrew Duke is always well produced, full of sound (perhaps the only thing not minimal!), and perhaps not always full of surprises, but quality is guaranteed. (FdW)
Address: http://www.phthalo.com

GODS OF ELECTRICITY - SUNDIVING (CD by Faith Strange)
Another new name on the desk: Gods Of Electricity arrive with their debut CD and they are a two piece band: Mike Fazio (circuits, wires, meters, frets, white light) and Thomas Hamlin (hands, sticks, skins, swing, white light), and looking at they play it should no doubt be interpreted as music for synthesizers, effects, guitars and percussion. They have been playing together for some twenty years now, solo and together in various disguises, such as Chill Faction Two, Copernicus and Black47. The inspirations are drawn from Coil, Clock Dva to Fripp & Eno, Bill Nelson to Ligeti and Bartok. Fazio and Hamlin know how to play their instruments that is one thing that we can't argue about. But the tracks are a bit long, certainly 'Clouds Of Granite In A Clearing Sky' (thirty eight minutes) and 'Slick-O-Phonic' (ten minutes). Especially the latter seems to be lacking more ideas than a good three minute piece should hold. Gods Of Electricity take the listener on an ambient and ethno rhythm trip, although the rhythms comes from electronic percussion (it seems to me of course) and sometimes bear resemblance with the world of drum & bass and techno. The ambient side reminded me of Jeff Greinke: fat spacious synths that wave in various directions at the same time. It's foremost a solid work, taking cleverly various bits of (semi-) alternative music, produced in an excellent way, but composition wise I am not always convinced. (FdW)
Address: http://www.faithstrange.com

BAND OF PAIN - THROUGH THE PAST DARKLY (2CD by Fin de Siecle Media)
What I like about releases like this is that sums up a career of a band, and finally a possibility to get rid of all those obscure records, which you never play and which are in your way (the disadvantage of an one-room apartment), but what I don't understand is the first CD of this. Band Of Pain, a side project of Steve Pittis, once in Splintered and now of Dirter Promotions, released a couple of albums on his own label, Cold Spring and Iris Light, which were well received at the time and widely, easily available. Much of the first CD contains tracks from these albums, which I assume most fans already have. The previously unreleased cuts, five in total for the two CD package, plus the rare 7"s on CD two are of much more interest to the fans, who couldn't perhaps afford them all. What I didn't notice that much at the time when the original works were released, is that Band Of Pain is much darker and gloomier than I remembered from the last time I hear this music. Darker than life textures, played on synthesizers and sampled guitars, sometimes with taped snippets from radio and television. I knew Band Of Pain wasn't all about fun, but didn't remember this to be that dark. Perhaps this music sounds a bit dated yet, and has my taste moved towards other things too much. But from a historical perspective certainly a most welcome product. (FdW)
Address: http://www.findesieclemedia.com

ST.RIDE - PIUME CHE CADONO (CD by Zeit Interference)
Although around since 1998, this is my first encounter with St.ride, a duo from Genova, Italy: Edo Grandi and Maurizio Gusmerini. Their previous releases were on Snowdonia, and 'Piume Che Cadono' is their latest. On their website, which is sadly in Italian, we see them at work: live in the studio, using two DJ CD players, a computer and a mixer. It's not easy to put them in any sort of category, which of course is not the exact task of the reviewer (but also comes in handy). Part of the problem is that St.ride play short tracks, twenty in total in a time span of just over thirty six minutes. Sometimes a rhythm is the backbone over which the two improvise their way, using a variety of sounds, which are simply hard to define. Guitars? Synths? Voices? Or just plundered stuff from CDs? It's hard to tell. Sometimes the music is rather sketch like, using one or two ideas, but I think they are better when things are more complex. Mostly electronic, however not in any way techno related, mostly improvised, but in any conventional sense of the word. Like said altogether not easy to put in some category, but throughout an enjoyable CD, with a good sense of varying ideas. (FdW)
Address: http://www.lizardrecords.it

ENORE ZAFFIRI - LA VOCE ED IL SINTETIZZATORE (CD by Rossbin)
The name Enore Zaffiri is completely new to me, even when he was in 1928, went to the conservatory and founded the Studio Di Musica Elettronica Di Torino in 1964. If I understood correctly many of his works deal with the relation between 'real' instruments and traditional composition in combination with electronics. In the work presented on this CD, which translates as 'the voice and the synthesizer' he works with was the state of the art synthesizer at that time, the Arp synthesizer and the oldest instrument, the voice. He started composing this work in 1973 and lasted until 1981. The nine parts all deal with texts by people like Eliot, Kerouak, Lamantia, George and Shakespeare. Now, so many years later, this work doesn't sound that radical anymore. It just sounds like a typical work of electronic music from the seventies. Ellen Kapel sings the texts in a fairly traditional modern classical way, bending her voice up and down. It seems to be of more importance that the synthesizer, which is more like an ornament to the voice than a separate instrument on equal part with the voice. It's a work that can't be seen out of the time it was made, and it's a work that is surely great by that day's standard, but sounds a bit dated now. (FdW)
Address: http://www.rossbin.com

THE GENTLEMAN LOSERS (CD by Büro)
Now that Finland is on the map of music for good, by winning the Eurovision Songcontest with an imitation of Kiss, we have the Gentleman Losers, two brothers, Samu and Ville Kuukka. The debut with a CD/LP on Büro, a new label, off-shoot of City Centre Offices. Samu plays keyboards and Ville plays guitars. The keyboards must not be seen as keyboards, but turn out also the rhythms used. The album was already recorded between January and September 2004. The Gentleman Losers play melodic guitar music. Slides play an important role. Rhythms are slow and the whole thing is quite cinematic. Desolated desert music that is deeply melancholic - no wonder from an empty land with a thousand lakes, but it also sounds quite like americana. It's at times a beautiful record, I readily admit. It has the same melancholy that is present on so many electronic records (Highpoint Lowlife, Expanding, Static Caravan), but here entirely played on guitars and keyboards. That's absolute a big advantage. But in the end you could think that perhaps ten of these tracks is a bit much. Some more variation wouldn't harm. For instance by letting one instrument play the main theme of a piece and the other be supportive, and then in the next track reverse these roles. It would make a slightly more varied album. But in terms of mood music, this is certainly an album with some tunes that would perfectly fit a rainy day. (FdW)
Address: http://www.city-centre-offices.de

VITAMINSFORYOU - THE LEGEND OF BIRD'S HILL (CD by Intr_Version)
Apart from bumping in on the odd compilation, this is my second full encounter with Vitaminsforyou, the project of Bryce Kyshnier from Winnipeg, Canada. The first time around was late 2003, when Intr_version released his debut album, 'I'm Sorry For Ever And For Always' (see Vital Weekly 402). Back then I compared it with Radiohead (the singing) in combination with The Books, but things have expanded further on this one. Aided by musical contributions of Ghislain Poirier, Emm Gryner and others from the ever so lively Canadian music scene, Kyshnier now comes up with an album which continues the indie singer-songwriter rock sound from the first album, but also expands with many other styles, just a glitch, techno, scratching and hip-hop. Thus it has become quite a diverse album, but it's the sheer length of the album that makes things alright. It becomes like listening to the radio, except that whenever there is singing, it's the same guy who is singing (and since singing is not always my favorite instrument it's the only weak element in Vitaminsforyou). This is one of the few album that could actually my interest for the full, long seventy three minutes, always wondering what would come next. A major leap forward. (FdW)
Address: http://www.intr-version.com

SNOG - VS THE FAECAL JUGGERNAUT OF MASS CULTURE (CD by Hymen Records)
People interested in electronic music, might have met at least one of the projects by Australian composer David Thrussell during their musical explorations. David Thrussell has been the brain behind a number of the most interesting projects from the Australian experimental scene in almost two decades, spanning from the cinematic ambient-based soundscape-project SOMA, via his most well-known and Industrial-based project Black Lung to Snog, which is the oldest of his projects. Established back in 1988, Snog is the most politically focused project of David Thrussell. Since the debut album "Lies inc." the aim of the project has been to fight against capitalism and western consume culture. As is the case with other releases from Snog, the tracks on this latest attack on the consumption society, titled "Snog vs. the faecal juggernaut of mass culture, are first of all lyrically based with a nice balance between a serious and a humorous approach to the subjects. Musically the album is an eye-opener with its massive use of slide guitar and shuffle beats in one moment and in the next, interventions of full-throttle breakbeats. To understate his ability in treating the acoustic sound world, David Thrussell adds eight mp3-bonus tracks of exclusive acoustic based works including alternative guitar-based versions of tracks from the original part of the album. All said and done, Snog was one of the most fiercely original bands of the 1990s Industrial scene, and it's a great pleasure listening to this eight full-length subversion of Western society. (NMP)
Address: http://www.hymen-records.com

THIS MORN' OMINA - LES PASSAGES JUMEAUX : LE 25IÈME DEGRÉ ~ LE 33IÈME DEGRÉ (2-CD by Ant-Zen Recordings)
If you didn't know better you might have thought that Staalplaat had collected new materials for yet another Muslimgauze-album, when listening to the opening minutes of this third opus from belgium project This Morn Omina. Threatening percussive beats and distorted electronic soundscapes gives me associations towards a track like "Satyajit Eye" from the Muslimgauze' album "Vote Hezbollah" (1993). An effective opening that are soon after overtaken by the well-known spheres of ethnic power Industrial from This Morn' Omina. Being the follow-up to the first chapter of the "Nyan Trilogy" titled "Le serpent blanc / le serpent rouge", it took three years to reach this second chapter of the trilogy. It was definitely worth the wait though! The conceptual approach of "This Morn' Omina" has since the debut album from 1997 titled "Nezeru Enti Sebauem Neterxertet" been a harsh mixture of aggressive industrial and tribal trance, exclusively kept in the electronic sound world. On "Les passages Jumeaux" acoustic elements have found its way into the sound-spheres of heavy beat-driven machinery. The brain behind This Morn' Omina, Mika Goedrijk, has joined forces with percussionist Sal-Olin. Thus "Les passages Jumeaux" represents a remarkable step in the eastern direction of the musical style first of all thanks to the percussions of Sal-Olin but also because of the frequent use of ethnic voice samples as well as the processed sounds of tablas and other exotic musical instruments. With two discs clocking 100+ minutes, "Les passages Jumeaux" is the perfect source for some ongoing physical activity during summer. Highly recommended! (NMP)
Address: http://www.ant-zen.com

URKUMA - REBUILDING PANTALEONE'S TREE (CD by Baskaru)
(ETRE) - A POST-FORDIST PARADE IN THE STRIKE OF EVENTS (CD by Baskaru)
Urkuma means in the home region of Stefano de Santis, aka the man behind Urkuma, the opposite to the Buddhist concept of nirvana. The home region can be found in the south east part of Italy. Originally De Santis was a playwright, but later went to translate his theatre concepts in sound. And this new album is something of a concept album, based on the monk Pantaleone's mosaic floor in the Cathedral of Otranto, which includes, among other things, animals playing instruments. It may suggest that De Santis thinks of himself as an animal, but it's not. He plays laptop, small electronic devices, clarinet, home-built instruments and tapes. That may sound like the usual ingredients for a fine piece (or nine, as in this case) of microsound, but it's actually not really just that. De Santis improvises his music much than he actually composes it, clanging his way through disjointed percussion, plink plonk on guitars and the occasional beep on the clarinet. Much more in y'r face than much of the regular microsound, this is actually a fine meeting of improvised music, some harsher overtones amongst subtle embedded sound tapestries. Quite nice indeed.
(etre) means 'being' and is also from Italy (like Urkuma and ENT, also on Baskaru, a French label) and is one Salvatore Borelli, who also creates sound installations and experimental performance art. 'A Post-Fordist Paradise In The Strike Of Events' is his debut album and Borelli uses vocals, toys, guitars, percussion, field recordings and max/msp patches. Like Urkuma, (etre) moves also about in the world of glitchy sound processing, and again alike Urkuma, the sound is pretty much upfront and direct. Careful crackling hisses and deep-end bass sound are skipped in favor of all sorts of sound manipulation that is immediately present. Perhaps a bit more electronic in approach, it's also of the two the bit of a lesser one, because it sounds less surprising. It moves through textures that are known from people like Fennesz or Tim Hecker, but is sometimes to single minded in approach and not much seems to be happening within a piece. It's OK, but not great. (FdW)
Address: http://www.baskaru.com

DJ OLIVE - SLEEP (CD by Room40)
KEITH FULLERTON WHITMAN - TRACK 4 (2 WAYS SUPERIMPOSED) (CDEP by Room40)
These two releases by Room40 are both about ambient music, each in their own way. DJ Olive's work for some reason went by me, without noticing it. I don't why, but it happened. So it's not easy to compare this with his other work. Apparently DJ Olive did some 'sleep parties' in the nineties, and this CD can be seen as a soundtrack for that. It's a highly ambient record, but it's not an album of one big audio cloud, lulling the listener into dreamland. It starts out with a deep end drone, but as the piece progresses over the next forty-five minutes, it moves through various other textured pieces and becomes more subtle throughout. It can be seen as the various stages of sleep, but perhaps it's also, when played softly enough, the idea to put this one when you go to bed, and the sound dying out slowly on you. Not my favorite way of either listening to music, or going to sleep, but when awake and present, this provides a highly dense listening experience that can also be fully enjoyed when awake.
Keith Fullerton Whitman was recently on tour in Australia and for the occasion he made a limited edition CDEP called 'Track 4 (2 Ways Superimposed)'. Over the course of twenty-one minute, he creates an even more quiet piece of ambient than DJ Olive does. Slowly passing by moving clouds of sound, and some carefully constructed small rhythm section on top. That is about it, but its a gentle flowing piece of music, moving through one shade, rather than DJ Olive's multiple shades, but it creates a likewise sound environment that works well on a lazy sunday afternoon, with a good book and a glass of wine at hand. (FdW)
Address: http://www.room40.org

YOAV GAL & YAEL KANAREK - BIT BY BIT, CELL BY CELL (CD by Innova)
Me not liking the opera genre very much is probably a childhood trauma, with a father liking them very much and occasionally playing them quite loud. So it's with some suspicion that I started playing this, an electronic opera, all played on an Atari 800XL and a female voice - I think these things are called 'chamber opera'. 'The plot revolves around a lone traveler who searches for a lost treasure in a parallel world. Finding a portal in front of 419 East 6th Street and performing a dance right there in the street, the hooded traveler escapes toward sunset/sunrise'. The traveler sends notes about his journey, which is the story. I need to quote that since the singing didn't make that clear to me, even when the libretto (I know my words, see?) is included in the booklet. The music sounds indeed like ancient electronica, which is sometimes quirky, uptempo, almost baroque in the title piece and on other occasions sets in for a more moody playing. I have not much knowledge on the composers of this mini opera, Yoav Gal and Yael Kanarek, but their work is quite nice. Maybe the singing is a bit too much in reference to traditional opera for me, but throughout I quite enjoyed this, perhaps for the strangeness among the rest here this week. (FdW)
Address: http://www.innova.mu

MARK WASTELL - CARESSED ON THE BROW BY UNSEEN HANDS (CDR by L'Innomable)
The front cover of this release just says Mark Wastell, but flip the cover and an impressive list of musicians is shown, a who's who in onkyo and improvised music. Tetuzi Akiyama, Rhodri Davies, Graham Halliwell, Paul Hood, Annette Krebs, Mattin, Andrea Neumann as well as some people that perhaps are lesser known such as Benedict Drew, Michael Duch and Nishide Takehiro. The instruments range from inside piano, guitars, violoncello, harp, double bass, to amplified and feedback saxophone, laptop and gp3 record player. I assume they perform some sort of score of some kind, prepared by Wastell, and that after the recordings it was edited to this almost thirty minute piece of music which is a fine, I'd say very fine, cross-over between classical composition and improvisation. Feedback like sounds swell up and slowly disappear, while the acoustic part of the group devotes themselves to playing pizzicato sounds, but everything happens in a slow fashion. It's a pity it rather ends abruptly, as it could have easily lasted another fifteen or so minutes and bringing the proceedings to a more natural conclusion. But otherwise: a great release! (FdW)
Address: http://www.linnomable.com

HINTERLANDT - NO FIXED ADDRESS (CDR by Neus 318)
Vaguely I follow the world of 'real' music, sometimes, by intent or accident. Occasionally I spot the winners, but sometimes I totally miss out. I know that boys behind piano's are the latest craze in music. I forgot their names, because I wasn't that much interested in a boy behind piano, since seeing Elton John dressed like a parrot when I was twelve years old. But but but, there is something about this new Hinterlandt release that attracts me. Jochen Gutsch is probably the most poppy unpop hero in Vital Weekly. His 'Poprekordt' (see Vital Weekly 404) was a classic, a first landmark to cross from experimental to techno and popmusic. 'No Fixed Address' is the next. Of the seven tracks, five are 'singer-songwriter, boy singing behind a piano' thing, and I must say I don't like it all, but Gutsch does a very fine job. It's very very close to the real thing. Gutsch sings his popsong sitting behind is piano (most likely hidden in a box called the laptop), with guitar arrangements, drums and whatever is needed for a good popsong. But still it's not something that me personally likes. It's excellently made and produced, but not my thing. But hey, there were seven tracks, right? The other two are in length much longer than the total of the other five, and are collages of musique concrete, stretched samples and elements of the popsongs, like cello sounds or orchestral passages. Perhaps a remix of the man himself? It's exactly these two tracks that made me think: wow, this guy is really doing things, changing the menu perhaps into something that I may not like that much, but it's the combination of things that makes this a most remarkable new record. A second landmark in the catalogue of Hinterlandt. (FdW)
Address: http://www.neus318.com

STORMHAT - VINDSPEJL (CDR by Cohort Records)
A stormhat is not a hat you wear during a storm, but means monk's cowl and behind the musical project with that name we find one Peter Bach Nicolaisen from Denmark. He is associated with the Krabbesholm School of Art and Architecture Design, who released a 3"CD from him. What 'Vindspejl' means I don't know, but I assume something like 'wind arrow' and it brings us straight away to the main interest for Nicolaisen, being field recordings. These are widely treated inside the computer and create a work that falls in the microsound world. Carefully cracking about, drones created from stale wind recordings, bass sounds from earthly activities: all the usual suspects are there. As such it's absolutely nothing new under the sun of microsound, but Stormhat does a fine job. None of the eight tracks are weak by any standards, perhaps sometimes a bit interchangeable, but it's produced with care and style. That is sometimes enough. (FdW)
Address: http://cohortrecords.0catch.com

FRAG-MIST - TUKUYOMI (CDR by Alienation)
PLEASUREHORSE - TAITSU [TIGHTS] (CDR by Alienation)
ANTHONY SAUNDERS - 102X04 (AS DRIFTING OF NIGHT INTO MORNING) (CDR by Alienation)
DAVID KENDALL - FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE (CDR by Alienation)
SUZY (CDR by Alienation)
THIRDORGAN - LALAHMANIA (CDR by Alienation)
RECONSTRUCTION OF RUINS ((CDR compilation by Alienation)
Like it stated on the Vital Weekly website, we do intend to review everything we get, but labels are urged to send a few of their releases and not everything. Certainly in the world of CDR and MP3 releases it's easy to release a lot and if one intends to send them all, like Alienation in this case, one is bound to get some shorter review. Certainly when it deals with older releases such as Frag-mist's 'Tukuyomi', which was released in 2004 and of whom no information is available. The five pieces are best described as a take on cosmic music. It could have been played on a bunch of analogue synths, although the opening track hints more towards computer based time stretching. Playing a moody card this release that is not exactly ambient, but more present. Some of the pieces are bit unfocussed, not really going anywhere, but throughout it's pretty enjoyable.
Pleasurehorse is one Shawn Greenlee, who studied music at Brown University in Rhode Island. He works with computer music as we learn from his website, but it's a pretty radical one. It opens with some extreme digital noise, making us fear the worst, but as the disc continues, I must say that his radical computer music had a surprise or two. It wasn't the all full blast of distortion, but also featured some softer moments, which still had that high pitched tone or deep end low sound. Quite a surprise this one.
Also unknown to me is Anthony Saunders, also from the USA, and who has been creating music since 1995, with an increasing list of equipment, and with equipment getting better and better. He describes his music as something that can be "microsound, ambient, concrete/tape music and Japanese-style harsh noise", for which he uses computer, but also guitar effects. His release '102x04 (As Drifting Of Night Into Morning)' is quite sit, as it lasts over seventy-five minutes.
From the musical styles Anthony mentions, the
harsh noise takes up to number seven before it starts. Up until that it's mainly micro glitch field recording crackle that is featured in those pieces. They are quite alright, but it's all a bit too much, since much of it is quite singular in approach. The noise outburst breaks that a bit, but it comes too late. A bit more selective would be an option.
Third new artist (for me at least) is David Kendall, who has four tracks (obviously!) on his CDR. His website doesn't offer much information about who he is. Kendall plays more classical oriented noise along the lines of King Merzbow in some of the pieces (the second an fourth piece) , but the third piece is more a form of powerful drone music than over the top noise, and as such it's the best track of the release. The rest couldn't convince me.
More Kendall can be found on the release as Suzy, which a David Kendall collaboration with Third Organ, the band behind the label. It opens with a classic noise assault, which we heard doing better. The second piece however opens up rhythmically, before blowing to pieces. Its a rather interesting piece to cross rhythm and noise. But for the rest it's the usual noise act, which I must admit falls in the section 'heard it all'.
Something similar can be said of Third Organ's 'Lalahmania', their latest offering to the world of noise. It sounds exactly like one would expect this sound from their previous releases. Loud, distorted, chaotic, feedback like: all the usual suspects of noise are in there, and that's what makes this music so predictable. Time to move on.
Noise is also part of the final release, a nine track remix CDR release of Government Alpha, the well-known Jap noise outfit. Almost everybody does the 'noise + noise = more noise' thing, but there is some nice variation in this lot that makes it quite interesting. Satanicpornocultshop do their cut up plunderphonics thing, which is by far the best track here, but also Marhaug's remix is a good runner up. Also included are Kouhei, Moon (with a very loud cosmic music explosion), Masayuki Akamatsu, Pleasurehorse, Contagious Orgasm (with whom Government Alpha recently did a whole collaboration album, see Vital Weekly 524), Astro and S. Isabella. (FdW)
Address: http://www.ops.dti.ne.jp/~thirdorg/

CADUCEUS - INFLUENCE VOLUME SEVEN (MP3 by Caduceus Music)
In the ongoing MP3 series of remixes of CDs that influenced Caduceus to become what they (a minimal techno duo), it's so far the more unusual acts that hold my best interest. Who would have thought that they were influenced by 'Who Can I Turn To Stereo', Nurse With Wound's more prog/krautrock-rock albums of the recent years? I wouldn't have expected this. Caduceus take the stereo reference in the title quite literal. The first piece is still among the lines of their strict minimal techno music, but in 'Infl0702', the grasp some of the Nurse With Wound cut-up/collage techniques and in 'Infl0703' the krautrock rhythm of the same album. The lengthy fourth piece returns to the minimal field, but without much rhythm. Especially the second and third piece make use of the original and takes it into the field of interest of Caduceus. One of the best so far. (FdW)
Address: http://www.caduceusmusic.net

CLUB MORAL STOCKLIST (Podcast)
Besides our own Vital Weekly podcast, the internet has lots more of this, and surely Vital Weekly could use a reviewer to shed light on these, but for now (for once?) the spotlight goes out to the podcasting done by Club Moral. In the last two years we reviewed several of the latter day releases, but now the group ceased their activities, AMVK and DDV parting ways. But they were around since the early eighties, releasing a long line of cassettes by people like themselves, but also Etat Brut (a personal favorite here), Angst (another long long favorite, can't wait to hear 'Kousen Breien Voor Melaatsen) and the various compilations (such as Propagandum, 19Keys/19Bands). The music is classic power electronics in some cases, or more rhythmic affairs (Etat Brut) or the totally vague, obscured music by Angst. There will be a couple of well-known names, but the majority of the bands are quite unknown and from a historical point of view this is a most important thing if you want to learn about true underground, to learn whatever more there was than Whitehouse. (FdW)
Address: http://clubmoralstocklist.podomatic.com

correction: in the review of Manu Holterbach it is said that he created electronic glasses, but they are 'enharmonic glasses', which are described as such: "the feet of the glasses is hollow, the water is going through it and is connected to a sort of pocket, filled with water. when we press the pocket with our feet, we can control "enharmonicaly" the frequencies produced by finger-bowing the glasses."

 

 

 

 

 

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