31 March 2011

Blithe Field - beautiful wave '74 (2010, Messy Life)

The names of artists such as The Books, Foxes in Fiction, Black Moth Super Rainbow or American Analog Set are used to describe the musical universe of Blithe Field, the mostly solo project of Athens, Ohio, based Spencer Radcliffe, apparently sometimes helped by one or another friend.

And such band names come on purpose for one of the very few really interesting artists to emerge from the "chillwave" scene of last year.

30 March 2011

TOMO – Butterfly Dream and Other Guitar Works (2010, Subvalent)

Seventy minutes of music for this solo project. Behind the alias TOMO (Transcendental Organic Magical Objective) we find a Japanese musician, living in Tokyo, who spent a few years at Missouri, discovering blues, country, bluegrass, ragtime, jazz, and learning to play guitar picking styles.

25 March 2011

Hisato Higuchi - henzai (2010, Family Vineyard)

Living in Tokyo, Hisato Higuchi is a Japanese musician who released a few albums since the early 00's, and "Henzai" is his third one for Family Vineyard.

It's and extreme and very ascetic release, with hummed fragments of songs, drifting guitar notes with a whispering voice of no decipherable words. The influence of Loren Connors is huge but a parallelism can also be tempted with Ilyas Ahmed.

22 March 2011

Hammock - longest year (2010, Redeye)

Six years after their debut album "Kenotic", Marc Byrd, Andrew Thompson, with their now regular collaborator Matt Slocum on cello, are still exploring similar areas of opulent and bright, peaceful and delicate ambient music.

17 March 2011

Mombi - the wounded beat (2011, Own)

After Bear vs. Larger Bear (his first band under, among others, Death Cab For Cutie / Appleseed Cast influences), next solo as Sun Cancelled (something like an intimate ethereal version of Owen), then again in a four people band, Khale, and finally as Mombi, each new release by Kael Smith, solidly paired with Matt Heron since Khale, is a new transformation and erase the past like chalk on a blackboard, leaving just traces before redrawing the frame.

10 March 2011

Sane Masayuki - myrtle (2010, Bunkaikei)

Not much info available on Sane Masayuki and if there are some it's in Japanese.

"Myrtle" seems to be his debut ep and the third release on the netlabel Bunkaikei. We are very close to the kind of records usually promoted by labels such as Schole (Japan) or Kitchen (Singapore), an close to a more traditional version of what Daisuke Miyatani or Sawako are exploring. If we trust the quality of this ep he is promised to an at least similar achievements. 

09 March 2011

Desertshore - drifting your majesty (2010, Caldo Verde)

My reason to enjoy this record is not the best one and can only be resumed to one song, "Mojave Mirage" which could be easily mixed up with a potential lost unreleased instrumental from the Red House Painters or from Sun Kil Moon.

08 March 2011

The Oo-ray - winterbone ep (2011, Waveguide)

The Oo-ray is the solo ambient drone project of Ted Laderas, from Portland, OR, who claims an indefeasible love for My Bloody Valentine but just pretends using almost exclusively a cello in order to compose his own music, processing intensively certain layers and adding some guitar and tambourine.

Martin Herterich - estonia (2009, Under The Spire)

After "recordings 070401-070521" (2007) and "Silent Fields" (2009), "Estonia" is the third release of Martin Herterich I discover.

The whole EP seems referenced to the works of the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt, with the last track dedicated to him.

07 March 2011

Úrsula - hasta que la soledad nos separe (2010, Foehn)

A surprise. For their fifth album, the duo from Sevilla, Spain, formed by David Cordero and Juan Luis Castro, removed the vocals, the melodies and beats and moved towards something purely instrumental, between ambient and minimalism, with neoclassicism and contemporary references.

My Autumn Empire - the village compass (2010, Wayside And Woodland / Thomason Sounds)

First official solo album for Benjamin Thomas Holton, from  Staffordshire, UK, also member of epic45 and occasional collaborator of Antohny Harding (July Skies).

"The Village Compass" is a collection of intimate indie folk pastoral songwriting, recorded between 2005 and 2008, under the obvious influence of artists such as Hood, Empress, Appendix Out or Movietone, all of them have probably haunted his adolescence, but turned here into a more direct, à fleur de peau, personal & solo expression, which you could also link to works of recent artists such as Talons' or Vio/Miré, as all of them combine stripped-back folk songs, with sparse electronics and field recordings.

04 March 2011

Sail A Whale - a documentation (2010, Sincerely Yours, Acéphale)

If the project name is new, it took me just half a minute to identify Sail A Whale as a new alias of David Kyhlberg, up to now active as Morning Paper ("It's getting clearer" 2008 ; "Making you up" 2007).

If Morning Paper is his solo project with the occasional participation of The Bridal Shop members, Sail a Whale is presented as a duo with Sebastien Rozenberg - probably behind the videos - helping David Kyhlberg who still seems the main author of this record.

03 March 2011

In Sepia - incandescent 7" (2010, Creekside Train)

This emo(core) quartet from Brisbane, started in 2007, meets exactly the nineties midwest archetype of the genre, with tutelary figures such as Mineral, American Football, but fails at giving something original to this norm.

02 March 2011

Marcus Fischer - monocoastal (2010, 12k)

"Monocoastal" fits perfectly in the 12k catalogue as a perfect disciple of some explorations and areas previously opened by Taylor Deupree.

You could sleep peacefully while this record is played, with no risk to be suddenly wakened, a patient morning walk, on your way to work, under heavy fog. 

Last Days Of April - gooey (2010, Bad Taste)

Since their third album "Angel Youth" (200), Last Days of April, which could be resumed now to Karl Larsson and occasional contributors, try to reproduce the same indie pop album.