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VITAL WEEKLY
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number 798
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week 38
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Vital Weekly, the webcast: 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!
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TALVIHORROS - DESCENT INTO DELTA (CD by Hibernate Recordings) *
SPLICE - LAB  (CD by Loop Records)
ADAM BOHMAN & IF, BWANA - ADHEISVES AND GROUT (CD by Korm Plastics) *
SPOOKY ATTRACTION FROM A DISTANCE - SUNFLOWER SUTRA (CD by Staubgold)
SYNAPSCAPE - TRAITS (CD by Ant-Zen)
LINGOUF - DOŠME (CD by Ant-Zen)
HECQ - AVENGER (CD by Hymen Records)
LUIGI TURRA - KI (3CD by And/Oar) *
AUSTIN BUCKETT - STUTTERSHINE (CD by HellosQuare Recordings) *
CANDLESNUFFER & LUKAS SIMONIS - NATURE STANDS ASIDE (CD by HellosQuare Recordings) *
PIERRE GERARD - ENVIRONMENT & GESTURE (CD by 3Leaves) *
LARS LEONHARD - 1549 (CD by Bine Music) *
TOMUTONTTU - ELAVANA PLANEETALLA (12" by New Images)
TOMUTONTTU (one sided LP by Beniffer Editions)
SINDRE BJERGA/NILS ROSTAD - LIVE AT MOVING FURNITURE RECORDS HQ (CDR by Moving Furniture Records) *
MATTHEW ATKINS - AN ABANDONED LANDSCAPE (CDR by Minimal Resource Manipulation) *
SHADED MONOCLE - LIT BY TALONS (CDR by Minimal Resource Manipulation) *
PROMUTE - SAM UHO (CDR by Full Spectrum Records) *
KIRTAN CHOIR - SAME RIVER TWICE (cassette by Full Spectrum Records)
JOHN FLANNELLY - SPACED (cassette by Auris Apothecary)
ROB FUNKHOUSER - GRANULAR MOMENTUM EXCHANGE (cassette by Auris Apothecary)
AURIS APOTHECARY SAMPLER #2 (cassette by Auris Apothecary)


TALVIHORROS - DESCENT INTO DELTA (CD by Hibernate Recordings)
Back in Vital Weekly 731 I reviewed the first CD by Talvihorros, also known as Ben Chatwin, a man with a guitar and effect pedals. He has had a couple of other releases, which I didn't hear. Up until this album there was a separation between live concerts and studio work. In his studio he would be using whatever sounds he could produce from whatever instrument, but live he was restricted to guitar plus effects. For this new studio album he took many hours of live playing into the studio and then started to edit and arrange this. Of his previous release on Hibernate I thought it was all quite ambient, but on this new one, things are less strictly defined. The guitar is overall a dominant factor for this, and its played at times in a more improvised way, feeding through bundles of sound effects. That results at times in menacing walls of sound such as in 'Beta', in which it reaches for the ambient doom of Nadja. Darkness is anyway something that lingers in all five pieces here, even in its more introspective and quiet moments, such as the very beautiful 'Delta', which has a nice viola to it. One could say that with this album Talvihorros found more a voice of his own than on the previous. Blending ambient with the improvised textures of ambient doom/metal into five fine tapestries of sound is very nice, though not unheard before, but a fine move indeed. (FdW)
Address: http://www.hibernate-recs.co.uk

SPLICE - LAB  (CD by Loop Records)
Splice is Robin Fincker (tenor sax, clarinet), Alex Bonney (trumpet, electronics), Pierre-Alexandre Tremblay  (bass, electronics) and Dave Smith (drums). 'Loop' is their debut and it was launched at the 2011 Loop Festival in London. This festival  is an initiative of the Loop Collective, a collective of artists that decided to create a platform for their activities. Splice is one of the projects that emerged from this collective enterprise.  Their work is influenced by a wide range of musical styles. Clearly improvised music and jazz, but also electronic and ambient music and - in contrast - noisy and punk approaches as well. A piece as 'Cortege'  sounded as an updated version of Henry Cow. Other pieces are very open structures that often miss a clear face.  A piece as 'Sillon FermÈ' is more close to ambient-like soundsculptures, whereas 'Ballade Fortuite'  taps from improvised music and jazz vocabulary. But in both cases the music is often very introspective and developing in a slow pace. In the closing piece 'Luna Verde' however the music reaches an intensity that gradually pulls you in the music. But in all in all it is difficult to get absorbed by this music. (DM)
Address: http://www.loopcollective.org

ADAM BOHMAN & IF, BWANA - ADHEISVES AND GROUT (CD by Korm Plastics)
With  'Adhesives and Grout' Brombron is up to it's 18th release already. It  started in 2000 as a collaboration between Extrapool and Staalplaat, but nowadays it is supervised by Frans de Waard. The formula is that two or more musicians are invited  to work out their ideas in just a few days at the studio at Extrapool, an arts initiative in the Netherlands. Both If Bwana and Adam Bohman  are veterans in their field. If, Bwana is american Al Margolis working under that name since the 80s. They know and appreciate each other already for a long time. Adam Bohman is known for his work as a member of Morphogenesis, and makes a duo with his brother, not surprisingly called The Bohman Brothers. Their new CD contains 14 pieces making up one hour. Pieces can be divided in two categories. On the one hand vocal pieces where  Adam and Al simultaneously perform a text that somehow becomes  interconnected. Sound poetry if you want. On the other hand the instrumental soundsculptures. The sound poetry pieces did not appeal to me, but the more did these fine soundsculptures. For me far more poetry is in these beautiful soundsculptures. Bohman plays prepared violin, home-made eleven stringed instrument, objects including wine and beer glasses, metal fork, wood, plastic, glass etc., voice. Al Margolis plays clarinet, voice, glockenspiel, guitar. With some minor additions supplied by Adrian Northover and Dan Andreana. (DM)
Address: http://www.kormplastics.nl

SPOOKY ATTRACTION FROM A DISTANCE - SUNFLOWER SUTRA (CD by Staubgold)
A very inventive and satisfying release! Basically the work of south african singer Juliana Venter and german guitarist Joseph Suchy, delivering here their first collaboration. Most pieces are folk-inspired songs, but they are so unconventionally arranged and performed, that they transcend the song-format. In this respect comparisons can be made with the early work of Van Dyke Parks or that of Vincent Bergerond. Juliana Venter is a singer, songwriter and actress with a background in film, television and stage productions. She is also co-founder of the legendary avant garde group Mud Ensemble that played an important role in the south African underground scene. Nowadays Venter lives in Europe, in Berlin, composing filmmusic, etc. Innovator Suchy was co-founder of the Grob-label and produced recordings by Franz Hautzinger, Ekkerhart Ehlers, Hugh Davis, a.o. As a performer his output is rather limited up till now. All music on this new release is composed, arranged and played by Venter, Suchy and Ramsay Mackay. And not unimportant for this release Suchy did the production and mixing. Suchy plays acoustic and prepared guitars. Mackay plays piano and keyboards, and Venter reversed mandolin, tambourin and cello. A piece like 'Wajunga Red Dog' is an abstract but still  very bluesy song. 'Ende des Herbstes' has effective but sparse guitar playing and is beautifully sung by Venter. Other pieces are folk-oriented or just ethereal and angelic soundclouds. The music is rich and has many sides and dimensions. Unpredictable and delicate. Very sensitive and communicative with very far out arrangements. A very successful example of where the combination of two ingredients - folk and experiment in this case- results in something that is far more than the sum of both elements. For sure an important and moving album! (DM)
Address: http://www.staubgold.com

SYNAPSCAPE - TRAITS (CD by Ant-Zen)
LINGOUF - DOŠME (CD by Ant-Zen)
The machine called Synapscape works brutally well, even sixteen years after the self-titled debut released back in 1995. This time the two machinists behind Synapscape, Philipp M¸nch and Tim Kniep, seems like momentarily slowing the tempo slightly down in comparison to earlier efforts but the expression is still as crushing and destructive as we know them. Being one of the pioneering acts of the power noise-style, the twosome knows exactly how to combine grinding noise textures with catchable rhythm textures. Tim Kniep's processed voice into pure
cynicism adds a perfect addition to the atmosphere. Many great moments on the album, however one of the trippier ones is the dark instrumental drone-piece "Conditio sine qua non" reminiscent of the amazing track "Cracked brain" from Seekness on the legendary "Teknoir"-compilation (Hymen records, 1999). In contrast to the introvert aforementioned track comes the experimental-club track
"Commute" built on cool electro-beats and voice-over samples. The track develops and moves in extremely effective manners like an ongoing train. Also the claustrophobic instrumental track of ghostly sounds and buzzing drones is outstanding. Another remarkable moment is the ten minutes long and beautiful deep ambient track, that stylishly shows a new quite interesting talent of the German duo. Awesome new album from Synapscape.
Next album is certainly some kind of unique listening experience. Roughly it could best be described as a classical music-take on power noise or breakcore. The project behind is French and carries the name Lingouf. The album titled "DoÈme" is an interesting blend of upfront electronics and classical chamber music. Thus the listener can enjoy the sounds of string instruments in the world of noisy grinding breakcore-noise. Imagine the breakcore-scene's answer to the 80's pop-scene's "Hooked On Classics", and you might know what this is all about. Very interesting. (NM)
Address: http://www.ant-zen.com

HECQ - AVENGER (CD by Hymen Records)
Taking his starting point in the intelligent dance music scene known as IDM, German sound talent Ben Lukas Boysen takes a new step on this latest release as Hecq. No wonder that Hecq became a respected sound artist with masterworks released from 2004 forward. The artist's ability of creating sonic spheres built on ambient-textures is unique and has lead him to create soundtracks for a large number of visual works. On this new album titled "Avenger", Hecq draws a thick line into the growing dubstep-scene but with his own personal footprint to it. Quite a few tracks on the album implements slow and heavily aggressive rhythm textures connected to the dubstep-scene but with additions of the atmospheric textures characterizing the style of Hecq. What is also interesting about this latest release is the trance-like textures saturating quite a few pieces of the album, such as "Pulverized" and "Nihilum" still with dubstep elements hiding underneath. The ending piece of the album shows the original nature of Hecq with a beautiful ambient-piece closing the mainwork in a perfect manner. However the album continues with five remixes of tracks from the album executed by the artists Septic Insurgent, Trifonic, Anxst, Architect and Deadfader. Awesome new call from one Europe's most interesting electronic music artists, if you ask me. (NM)
Address: http://www.hymen-records.com

LUIGI TURRA - KI (3CD by And/Oar)
Over the years I have reviewed a whole bunch of releases by Luigi Turra, various of them in collaboration with others, such as Shinkei and Christopher McFall. Here we have a trilogy of works, each around 45 to 48 minutes. The first one, 'Enso', was previously released by Small Voices, but not mastered properly, the second, 'Ancient Silence' as a very limited CDR EP and now in its full version, while the third, 'Shasekishu' is a previously unreleased work. That's about the extension of the information we have on this trilogy. From Turra's website we learn not a more: "Luigi Turra (b. 1975) is a musique concrËte composer and graphic designer. His main interest is in the aural balance between silence and tactile perception of sound. His work is published from the labels such as non visual objects (austria), and/OAR (usa), koyuki (italy), white line (uk)". For these works he uses instruments, objects and field recordings, but the instruments are not really specified. I hear voices, maybe guitar, maybe percussion, the shakuhachi. Its quite interesting to go this deep with someone's music, 120 or so minutes of that gives a pretty good idea of what someone does - although perhaps a bit long to play all at once. It sheds a light on how Turra composes, which is in a rather 'loose' way. He collates various events together and layers them, and makes a mix that reveals a constant flow of these events. Now we could call this ambient music, but its very much music without much use of synthesizers, but rather very loosely based sound events of processed field recordings, processed instruments, sound effects and silence thrown in, at seemingly random times. This is the kind of ambient music we don't hear a lot these, and I was thinking of the old band Sema, especially at 'Notes From Underground', although with Turra its harder to know what the instruments are, save perhaps for the shakuhachi which can be recognized throughout. An excellent work here all around - for those early autumn nights. (FdW)
Address: http://www.and-oar.org

AUSTIN BUCKETT - STUTTERSHINE (CD by HellosQuare Recordings)
CANDLESNUFFER & LUKAS SIMONIS - NATURE STANDS ASIDE (CD by HellosQuare Recordings)
Perhaps known for his work with Pollen Trio and Kasha, Austin Buckett is a piano player who also composes modern classical music. 'Stuttershine' is a forty five minute piece for piano and string quartet, performed here by the Silo String Quartet. Now I spoken out before on the subject of modern classical music: as much as I sometimes (!) like it, I am not really the right sort of person to talk about it, simply because I lack the knowledge about it. I never know the right lingo to describe what I hear. Buckett's piece is very modern, to each ears, with sustaining notes, bending strings and it all sounds, at times, like its all going through some sort of computer processing, which might not be the case, but shows the craftsmanship of these five players - Buckett himself is at the piano. Quite a nice piece, I thought, but a bit out my reference, but as far as I can judge quite alright
Also on the HellosQuare label, but from a totally different angle is the release by Candlesnuffer, also known as David Brown, who is part of the trio of with Anthony Pateras and Sean Baxter (see also Sean Baxter solo album this week). Together with Lukas Simonis he recorded an album in 2009, which is now released, no doubt in conjunction with mister Simonis' recent visit to a land down under. Although the cover doesn't specify this, I assume both Brown and Simonis play guitar and perhaps (no: surely) a whole bunch of effects. In his solo work Brown uses also bandoura, banjo and ukelele, but perhaps not here. This is all improvised music, as can be expected from Lukas Simonis, who has a long history in that field, including a recent album with Anne LeBerge. This is wild stuff, with lots of strong plucking, hitting and preparing, or rather, torturing the six strings. Lots of violent abuse of the guitar, but occasionally also coming alive into fine small melody or even a carefully constructed piece such as 'Hottentot Venus'. It never leaps into the world of true noise, which is a good thing. It has the raw power of punk, combined with its energy and the sheer musical experimentation of improvised music. A great work with a nice cover: printed at Extrapool, which unlike what the website says, is not really based in Amsterdam, but in sunny, lovely Nijmegen. (FdW)
Address: http://hellosquare.wordpress.com/

PIERRE GERARD - ENVIRONMENT & GESTURE (CD by 3Leaves)
After a couple of CDRs and download only releases, Pierre Gerard now moves into releasing his first real CD, thanks to the advantages some pressing plants offer to do smaller editions. This one is limited to 250 copies. Gerard is a computer musician of the more minimal kind - perhaps: the most minimal kind. He has three pieces here, all improvisations of which he says "i would like to improvise with the most minimal element, which shares our everyday life each minute when we are there. this improvisation does come in a domination of the one on the other, but in an integration. hoping that the sound which I produce would have been able to be without my participation". I left in the lowercase, so that you have an idea. The english could have used some work (but then: usually mine too), but its clear: Gerard works with a limited amount of sound. Objects in the first piece, and instruments in the second and third piece. The 'objects' are the drips of water, perhaps on a small variety of surfaces. Instruments are even harder to define here. In the third piece - the 'fullest' sound-wise - we hear also rain and/or static hiss and the water is now in a constant downfall, which started out in the second piece, but then its very hard to recognize many instruments at all. Quite a strange release, quite conceptual I think and also at the same time quite a beautiful release, very contemplative. Play loud or play soft - this is very much grounded in the work of microsound, and perhaps as such as not the most original one, but it's all done with great care. (FdW)
Address: http://www.3leaves-label.com/

LARS LEONHARD - 1549 (CD by Bine Music)
After an afternoon and an evening of Main, Zoviet*France and Lustmord, I have time to think a few things over. About ambient music, about live music, and meanwhile I play this CD by a guy I never heard of, Lars Leonhard. Obviously I don't use the same volume at home as they do in concerts, but somehow I play this a bit louder. Maybe I am getting deaf, or maybe I want to repeat last night's concert experience? The ambient music that is part of Leonhard's world is a somewhat different than that of Main, Zoviet*France and Lustmord, although there was a time when Zoviet*France played this kind of music too: ambient house. Lots of synthesizers, clicky, glitchy dance rhythms and field recordings from airports. The title of this release comes from US Airways Flight 1549 which crashed into the Hudson river in 2009. Leonhard studied his history quite closely. This CD could have been as easily released by Silent Records in 1996 at the peak of ambient house, when Silent was one of the best labels in that field with a more experimental edge than many of the more well-known ones. Leonhard's music bounces among the arpeggio's, with the rhythm ticking away nicely, elements from dub thrown in here and there (in the use of delay, rather than with a thumping bass) and throughout a most enjoyable release. Like I said: the next return will that be of ambient house: once we are all fed up with cosmic music and need a bit of more rhythm we will be chilling out again. Bine Music taps in right on time. (FdW)
Address: http://www.binemusic.de

TOMUTONTTU - ELAVANA PLANEETALLA (12" by New Images)
TOMUTONTTU (one sided LP by Beniffer Editions)
Although there is no indication on the first record, I'm told this is to be played at 45 rpm. I'm told by the musician when I handed him the keys to my workspace and let him go to work for concert/recording he's preparing. Dangerous business. Suppose I don't like this record? What will say tomorrow when I see him again? Get out of my workspace? Why the hell did you write that? And so on. Tomutonttu is the project of Jan Anderzen from Finland and its not easy to 'label' his music, which I guess is a good thing, right? Not easy for the reviewer of course, but then music is not made to make reviewer's jobs easy. The word that came to my mind, listening to this 12" and one sided LP is psychedelic music of an electronic nature. Lots of samples are thrown into a mega-blender and layered together, in seemingly a random mess/mesh up of sound. Is that my record player spinning out of control, or is the music of Tomutonttu? Hard to tell, actually. The 12" is a more bouncing affair of sorts, skipping back and forth between what seems to be a large pool of sound.
The one-sided record was commissioned by the Aanen Lumo Festival For New Sounds in Helsinki, and takes a bit more time to shift from one piece to another. Whereas the 12" dwells heavily on the use of samples, the LP uses percussion bits, guitar sounds, field recordings, and splits the stereo spectrum to add to that crazy psychedelic vibe. Two quite different records, although it doesn't need rocket science to tell they were made by the same person. With quite a bit of confidence I look forward to some weirdness on saturday! (FdW)
Address: http://www.kemiallisetystavat.com/tomutonttu/

SINDRE BJERGA/NILS ROSTAD - LIVE AT MOVING FURNITURE RECORDS HQ (CDR by Moving Furniture Records)
The living room is your stage: in this day and age its more and more difficult to get a place to perform your music, so sometimes you may end up with somebody's living room, which are temporarily called HQ of a record label. At least I assume Moving Furniture doesn't have a formal HQ (studio in the basement, A&R first floor, design second floor, canteen on the third, accounting on top floor) but more or less a living room space big enough to present small concerts. He has done a few already and on March 8th of this year he hosted two Norwegian's. First we have Sindre Bjerga playing a twenty-six some minute piece of music which I assume has some pre-recorded sounds - drones if you will - but maybe they were generated on the spot. On the label's website there is a short film for both, and especially the Bjerga film is quite dark, so its unclear. Bjerga uses contact microphones to 'scratch the surface' and builds quite a nice piece of introspective drone music. Intimacy dictated by the surroundings perhaps, but towards the end with a nice menacing undercurrent.
Rostad, it seems to me at least, does all live without questions (check film again) and plays the acoustic guitar for fifteen minutes in a highly improvised way. This has a great intimacy also around this piece, almost John Fahey like at times, melodic, detuned acoustic guitar with one or two objects in between the strings. Two excellent pieces, limited edition of 50 copies only - to further work on the intimacy theme. (FdW)
Address: http://www.movingfurniturerecords.com/

MATTHEW ATKINS - AN ABANDONED LANDSCAPE (CDR by Minimal Resource Manipulation)
SHADED MONOCLE - LIT BY TALONS (CDR by Minimal Resource Manipulation)
The man behind Minimal Resource Manipulation, Matthew Atkins, is also the man to fill pretty much every release in his catalogue, now up to release number 17 and 18. Now you could all too easily think that it would be a lot of the same thing, but surprisingly this ain't so. As Platform he explores the more rhythmic end of music, but under his own name he creates more an ambient kind of music. This new release under his own name is a follow-up to 'Hiatus' (see Vital Weekly 738). It uses a lot of field recordings from around London, hardly an abandoned landscape I would think, but those field recordings are starters for more extended pieces of 'empty' music, with lots sustaining synthesizer like sounds in the first piece 'Roadside Picnic' or in 'The Voice Of Ghosts', evoking indeed a sense of abandoned landscapes. Field recordings flicker away into an endless sustaining delay (which someone once described 'are we listening to the sea again?'), but here it is used effectively. 'Absence' seems almost absent of any soundmaterial, while 'Only Sadness Remains' has a deep melancholic feel to it - just as the title promises. Five highly varied pieces of music making one very excellent album.
The musical qualities of Atkins solo are usually to be found in electronic music, but he also is active in the world of improvised music, having already recorded two albums with Paul May, a drummer and player of percussive textures. They extended their duo playing into a group called Shaded Monocle, in which they play with others. Here, on 'Lit By Talons', they play with Carolyn Hume on piano and Simon Kobayashi on guitar, while Atkins takes credit for electronics and field recordings. Its not so much a quartet recording, as well as using recordings by Hume and Kobayashi, which are cut, looped, processed and used in a duo recording of May and Atkins. Five pieces of that, and if you wouldn't know better, you could as easily think that this is indeed a playing together for four persons, with perhaps someone live altering the sounds of the other three. Quite jazzy at times, reminding me of some of the stuff played by Spartak, but perhaps all a bit more electronic. More or less conventionally improvised, but no doubt a very recording as such. Five pieces, twenty minutes, which I think is probably the right length of such a thing, at least for me it is. (FdW)
Address: http://www.minimalresourcemanipulation.co.uk

PROMUTE - SAM UHO (CDR by Full Spectrum Records)
KIRTAN CHOIR - SAME RIVER TWICE (cassette by Full Spectrum Records)
Behind Promute is Shaun Sandor, from Chapel Hill, NC, of whom I know nothing else. There is just print on the CDR - a bit difficult when writing a review - but on the website I found that he uses synthesizers, homemade electronics and field recordings to create his own variation to theme called 'drone music'. Yet, despite his electronic set-up, this music sounds a bit more acoustic than would expect. Maybe it has to do with the field recordings used, maybe there is something else at play here, for instance recording his music through microphones rather than through line inputs. Especially the third (all are untitled) piece is a very fine one, maybe a bit long, but it has that fine acoustic edge to it. The first one is very introspective with flute like sounds and an empty room sounding alive, while second has a more dissonant clock like sound as the background theme for this. The fourth and last one is a more traditional piece, which seems to be using the most electronic sound approach. I thought this was all pretty interesting music, a somewhat different perspective on the whole notion of drone music.
Back in Vital Weekly 772 I already reviewed a work by CJ Boyd and Andrew Weathers, in which they gave each other instructions to improvise. This is continued on this new tape, so here we have "CJ gave the following obstructions to Andrew: 1. The entire side (of the tape) must be one piece (i.e. have the integrity of one composition), 2. Only 1/3 of the instrumentation used can be guitar, 3. The composition must be generated from someone else's music, 4. A section of the composition must be generated from someone else's music. 5. The composition must include a cover of a song that Andrew very much dislikes, while on the other its Andrew's turn for instructions: 1. All songs must be under five minutes, 2. At least one song must contain no "instruments" (i.e. anything created for making music), 3. No song may contain ostinato (i.e. a short melody or pattern that is constantly repeated), 4. The side must include some upright bass, at least 2/3 of which must be played with a bow, 5. There must be at least one consecutive minute with no tonal center. A bit long here what I plainly copied from the label's website, but I like these instructions since it gives you a fairly good clue what this is all about. Actually more obstructions than instructions. Much of what I wrote before applies here too: I am not sure if only 1/3 involves guitar, or when the bass was played with a bow for 2/3 of the times. That's not really a problem of course, since, however nice an idea is, its the execution of the idea that counts. Boyd and Weathers play their music in an improvised way, using guitars, viola, voice, glockenspiel and banjo. The title, taken from Heraclitus, comes from the fact that they played a tour for two weeks and every night used the same instructions, but never could repeat the same thing, and this tape has various cuts from those concerts. Quite loosely played, this is all rather folk like, but from an experimental point of view, improvised, melancholically. John Fahey in a small ensemble setting. I thought this was a pretty fine tape altogether, quite a leap forward from the previous. (FdW)
Address: http://www.fullspectrumrecords.com/

JOHN FLANNELLY - SPACED (cassette by Auris Apothecary)
ROB FUNKHOUSER - GRANULAR MOMENTUM EXCHANGE (cassette by Auris Apothecary)
AURIS APOTHECARY SAMPLER #2 (cassette by Auris Apothecary)
If you call your release 'Spaced', then we know we have to look in the world of cosmic music, right? I should think so, with the music by John Flannelly. He uses indeed a bit of synthesizer, but the main instrument is the free software editor Audacity, which he uses all the sounds and effects from to create his music. I must admit I thought that was the most interesting aspect, since the cosmic music here, is more a cosmic nightmare. I don't mean this to be negative, but Flannelly's music is hardly what I would call 'go with the spacious flow'. At times a bit harsh and yet the space theme approach is never far away. Sometimes in some nice keyboard like approach, sometimes sounding like laser guns from a space ship. When doing so, Flannelly is more alike modern electronic composers. With the same effort he could have used a more serious electronic avant-garde approach and have the same music going. I thought it was all quite nice, simply because it easily by-passes the well-known paths of regular cosmic music for something more experimental and interesting.
Something different is the music from someone of whom I also never heard. He hails from Bloomington and apparently uses a 'variety of household objects being rhythmically assaulted', but if you would have said it was a 'guitar played to abuse through a variety of distortion stomp boxes' I would have equally believed you. This tape lasts about an hour - twice as long as Flannelly's in case you were wondering - and that seems twice too long for such a noise based excursion. Maybe its because I don't like noise that much, and certainly when it is done without much idea or concept, which seems to me the case here. Music as a form of masturbation. I like music that interacts with the listener, I guess.
I have reviewed a bunch of releases on Auris Apothecary, but today I had a first look at their website and realized there are a lot more releases that I didn't review. The 'Auris Apothecary Sampler #2' sheds more light on what else they release. Lots of bands and people I never heard of like Fair Fjola, The Constants, Morsunda, Sitar Outreach Ministry, Eddy Price, Mike IX Williams, (((O))), The Gentleman's Butcher, Torture Corpse, Semilanccata as well as Funkhouser, Flannelly, Little Orpheus and the Rogue Lyons, Unholy Triforce (with an excerpt from their anti-cassette, curious!) and Dante Augustus Scarlatti. Quite an interesting mixture of electronic music, noise but also rock (which found their way onto vinyl for this label, and which seem very out place for Vital Weekly). Quite a curious label, but a fine mixed sampler of sorts. Grab it for free as a download from their site and investigate - strongly recommended. (FdW)
Address: http://aurisapothecary.org/





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