30 September 2010

The Morning Paper - making you up (2007, Cloudberry)

A trio from Stockholm, Sweden, two boys, one girl. Two songs plus an instrumental for a limited CDR release on the twee label Cloudberry Records. In fact mostly the solo project of David Kyhlberg, brain, soul and songwriter behind this mind-blowing and wonderful EP.

29 September 2010

Memoryhouse - the years EP (2010, Arcade Sound)

Borrowing their name from a Max Richter album, this Canadian duo (Denise Nouvion - vocals ; Evan Abeele - music) from Guelph, Ontario, is along their compatriot Foxes in Fiction, one of the very few interesting bands to emerge from this octopus scene that is chillwave, with a myriad of bands, blogs and videos serving an actual ebullience from which only a few will be retained, as always.

28 September 2010

Sublamp - wickerships (2010, Ahora Eterno)

Sublamp is project of Ryan Connor, living in Los Angeles and born in 1979, his parents are scientists working in national parks, so he developed a connection with nature which can be felt through his music.

27 September 2010

:take: / White/Lichens (2009, Three Four)

Having enjoyed & reviewed the :take: EP recently released on Three Four Records, I was curious to discover where he was coming from musically and so listening to his debut release, a split 10" with White/Lichens was the obvious next step. It is also the first release for the Parisian label.

26 September 2010

Moscow Olympics - beko 12 (2009, Beko Dsl)

These last years, South East Asia became unexpectedly from European eyes, the treasure island for everything about melancholic twee pop. With bands like Sunny Summer Day, Annemarie or Leach Me Lemonade seemed to have the regional leadership but with Moscow Olympics, now the Philippines make a strong impression too.

25 September 2010

Good Night & Good Morning - ep (2009, Orchid Collective / 2010 Own Records)

Good Night & Good Morning is an ambient indie duo from Champaign, Illinois, formed by Ryan Brewer and Pat Elifritz with the occasional help of a few other musicians.

This is, apparently, their third ep and the closest reference I might think of is Coastal. They share this same type of melancholic softness and kindness. It is also possible to relate them to the quietest and more intimate pieces of music Gregor Samsa, L'Altra or Khale released on their albums.

24 September 2010

This Invitation - sunless / ellipses, lapses, and collapses (2010, Distinct Mirror)

"This Invitation is an experimental duo based in Brooklyn, NY, comprised of Warren Ng and Casey Farnum that combines aspects of abstracted slowcore song structures with elements of minimalism, drone, free improvisation and noise." 

I discovered This Invitation in 2005 with their great debut album "Skin of Light". It took them five years to come back and their second full length is an impressive achievement. Impressive in all the senses of the term as it lasts a monumental 2 hours and 14 minutes. Even if they haven't changed their sensitivity and style, the final result is much more refined.

23 September 2010

Sawako - bitter sweet (2008, 12k)

Sawako continues to explore on “Bitter Sweet” what she opened on “Hum” and “Madoromi”. She is not inventing new forms but mostly filling a gap between ambient music and melancholic ethereal songwriting.

There are scraps of songs, ghosts of melodic lines, fragments of atmospheres floating slowly with quiet moving textures. The way she exchanges with invited contributing musicians is perfect, they never invade her universe, she mostly uses their output as a sensitive and subtle ingredient for her own music. 

22 September 2010

Opitope - hau (2007, Spekk)

This is the first Opitope album, a Japanese duo formed by Chihei Hatakeyama and Tomoyoshi Date in 2002. At the time of this release in 2007, Chihei Hatakaeyama's discography was limited to his "Minima Moralia" (2006) album on Kranky and Tomoyoshi had only released a track on the "Small Melodies" (2005) compilation of Spekk.

21 September 2010

Hood - the hood tapes (2005)

This is probably the most rare album of the Hood discography, a CDR release, only available at gigs and briefly on one or another mail-order. It features recordings from 2004-2005. The sound quality is mainly lo-fi, closer to their beginnings than their late discography.

20 September 2010

Finglebone - 23 (2010, Rural Colours)

Adam Varney learned to play guitar in the early nineties, the glorious lo-fi era of tapelabels and four tracks tape recorders which is long gone now. But instead of falling into nostalgia he moved his instrumental expression towards the field of ambient music with a profusion of field recordings with an emphasis given to guitar atmospheres.

19 September 2010

Rameses III - for josé maria (2010, Under The Spire)

"For José Maria" is a requiem composed by the UK trio Rameses III to the memory of Jose Maria Bellido, a Catalan athlete and musician who died of the consequences of diabetes.

Coming from Rameses III, such a composition is a kind of natural development, as they are always keen to confront themselves with a realist perspective and a refreshing open mind about the various potentialities of their music, never fixing themselves in a single category.

18 September 2010

:take: - ep (2010, Three Four)

:take: is the solo project of Jérôme Boutinot, a French musician from Paris. This self-titled EP is his second release as a split-EP with White/Lichens was released last year on the same label.

If Jérôme started his career as a member of a very typical and average post-rock band called Stereogrammes between 2003 and 2006, his solo compositions are a totally different aesthetic expression much more subtle and sensitive.

17 September 2010

Deep Waters - two songs ep (2010)

David Spalvieri-Kruse. David Spalvieri-Kruse. David Spalvieri-Kruse. I try to memorize his name. It's just that his ep puts me in such a state of chock that I presume I better write his name in my mind directly.

21 years old, from Kalamazoo, Michigan and studying at Machias, Maine (information found thanks to the lack of privacy of social networks). And touched by grace.

16 September 2010

Sketches For Albinos - days of being wild and kind (2010, Nothings66)

Based at Reykjavik, Matthew Collings releases music as Sketches for Albinos and this his is fourth release under this alias.

The use of references around the release of this album or older ones is somehow excessive as you can read things like "if Kevin Shields was a one-man band playing Steve Reich" or " resemblance to the works of veterans such as Godspeed You Black Emperor, Sigur Rós and Tortoise".

15 September 2010

M. Ostermeier - percolate (2010, Parvoart)

Marc Ostermeier is with his brother Eric behind the Maryland-based indie label Words on Music, with a focus on shoegaze & dreampop and my favorite band on this label was a stylistically exception, the slowcore band Coastal. The two brothers were also playing, with Tanya Maus, as Should. 

14 September 2010

The Number Eight - do something nice for someone you don't know (2010)

The Number Eight is an indie band from Kalamazoo, MI, with vocalist/guitarist Tim Tapper and guitarist/vocalist/singing saw player Carman Goodrich. They have regular indie U.S. influences but with a certain predisposition towards slowcore, which is the reason one  they caught my attention. Their music is still pretty lo-fi, usual and minimal and they remind me of bands like Bunkbed, Jim Yoshii Pile-Up, and at times even to Duster or Pedro The Lion.

13 September 2010

 - fr:om harmed weather to stark, micro, climates. (2009, Highpoint Lowlife)

Alpine. is the solo project of Alex Smalley, half of Pausal  and half of Olan Mill too. "Fr:om Harmed Weather To Stark, Micro, Climates.", a digital only release with a strange title, lists, in fact, in order, the names of the six tracks.

12 September 2010

Ghost To Falco - exotic believers (2010, Cape and Chalice/Infinite Front)

"Exotic Believers" burns, burns the fingers, burns the ears, burns your tongue. It's too hot, too spicy, too acid at times, and the contact with the first track is particularly harsh.

11 September 2010

Takuma Itoi - quietude (2005, Karate Joe)

Belonging to the Japanese ambient electronic scene, Takuma Itoi reminds me of Sawako, minus most of the organic side. “Quietude” is much more about digital sounds, but without sounding artificial, following narrative paths and evocative of depth and melancholic feelings, of loneliness and quietude.

10 September 2010

Squares On Both Sides - salt meadows (2010, Own)

If "Croquet" and "Dunaj" (his two first albums) were his caterpillar phase, "Indication" was more a type of chrysalis state where Daniel Bürkner's songwriting was in a process of transformation and still for some aspects with an unfinished status. "Salt Meadows" sees him now as both butterfly and moth.

09 September 2010

Pausal - pausal ep (2009, Highpoint Lowlife)

Originally released in 2007 as a three track web EP, written, played and recorded between 2005 and 2007, re-edited with a bonus track in 2009, this EP is the first release of Pausal (their first album, "Lapses", is now out too).

trailer : "Sin Nombre" by Cary Fukunaga

08 September 2010

Wentworth Kersey - ((O)) (2010, Plastic Sound Supply)

Recently I reviewed and album of George & Caplin, from Denver, Colorado. Wentworth Kersey is a side project of this band featuring Jeffrey Wentworth Stevens (soundscapes & synths) from George & Caplin, with songwriter Joe Kersey Sampson (guitars & vocals).

video : new live song from Talons'

07 September 2010

Fabio Orsi - audio for lovers (2008, Last Visible Dog)

Fabio Orsi is a prolific electronic musician from Taranto (Southern Italy) exploring the world of atmospheric drone/ ambient music.

"Audio for Lovers" is a double album released in 2008 on Last Visible Dog but his other records can be found on various labels like A silent Place, Digitalis, Preservation, Low Point, Ruralfaune and many others.

video : new live song from Carissa's Wierd

06 September 2010

Jupitter Goes Quattrocento - belo abismo (2010, PERKuNowA)

Time passes and nothing changes, a track on a compilation in 1999, a few self-released demos and CDR, mp3eps on Sundays in Spring (2007) and Beatismurder (2008) and now on PERKuNowA, "Belo Abismo".

video: "Sulfur" by Acetate Zero

05 September 2010

Warmth Terminal - getting closer (2010, Hibernate)

Sometimes, "influences" and "sounds like" names can give a clear idea of what a musician is trying to do, offering a spectrum in which he tries to place himself.

video : "Live at AD&A gallery" by Daisuke Miyatani

04 September 2010

Squares On Both Sides - indication (2009, Own)

Third album for Daniel Buerkner, with a cleaner, richer production for his minimalist introspective songwriting. But if it's still his voice, his intonation, vocals are more in front here and with a kind of studio plasticity and gloss which leaves me sometimes hesitant as a listener.

video : "Something's lost" by Piana

03 September 2010

Clem Leek – holly lane (2010, Hibernate)

Clem Leek is a young musician & composer from the South East of UK who completed his MA in Music Composition. So it's not surprising to find an academic or a least a classical grandeur (I mean strong emotions) to his ambient works and obvious references or influences from major vintage artists of the genre (I almost can feel relation with the works of artist like Brian Eno, David Sylvian, Michael Brook & Pieter Nooten, Philip Glass or Peter Gabriel).

video : "Unter" by Nils Frahm

Nils Frahm – Unter (Official Music Video) from Erased Tapes on Vimeo.

02 September 2010

Chris Watson & BJ Nilsen - storm (2006, Touch)

The starting point of this collaboration was of pure meteorological substance : during December 2000 several significant storm fronts had developed across the North Sea and Scandinavia and BJ Nilson (in Sweden) had made field recordings of those on the Baltic Coast and submit the idea to Chris Watson (in UK).

video : "Whispering in the Leaves" by Chris Watson

Chris Watson - Whispering in the Leaves from Whispering in the Leaves on Vimeo.

01 September 2010

Loïc B.O. - million dreams (2010, 62TV)

I love the intentions, I love the thematics, I love the position, I love the guitar sounds, I enjoy the lemon sweetness & the spleen of the vocals, but “Millions Dreams” is made to displease me for several reasons. Hopefully not totally.

trailer : "Premature" by Rashaad Enersto Green

Premature Trailer from Rashaad Ernesto Green on Vimeo.