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Showing posts from August, 2017

Diagnos – Walking down (Control Freak Kitten Records)

There’s a beautiful rambling psych pop flavour to the latest single from this Swedish band’s debut album.

It would tend to remind you of the pastoral and elegant sounds of Cluster.

Burbling synths make the background while stately guitar lines and serene organ sketch the foreground.

As if Papa M took a detour into kosmische.

It’s gorgeous.

Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra – Vula (Alien Transistor)

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There’s a welcome strain of mad bastard floating around a certain brand of German music lately and a good portion of it seems to emanate from the Alien Transistor label.

AMEO are an 18 piece ensemble lead by Daniel Glatzel based in Berlin and this music could really make you want to move there.

From the blurb:

It arrives gently, with shimmering lights, soft winds, sashaying melodies, and of course, the isotherms and isotheres function just as they should: All of a sudden, lighting strikes amid the concord of instruments, unforeseen energies erupt and upset the rhythmic scenery with elemental force. Making a combined effort to create sheltering patches of harmony within the unfolding drama, leader Daniel Glatzel and his 18-piece “working band” set out to harness album #4...imagine Michel Legrand meeting Maurice Ravel at a Gil Evans gig.

To that I would also add the lightness and sparkle of a Joe Hisaishi Studio Ghibli soundtrack.

And the joyousness frivolity and elegance …

Katie Von Schleicher – Paranoia (from the album Shitty hits, Full Time Hobby)

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There’s a compelling stalking atmosphere to this tune.

And a lovely warped feel to the prismatic guitar.

The voice is a wonderful instrument twisting words out of the side of the mouth making intriguing inflections.

With the blues wrapping around and a hint of the swagger of early Bowie.

It’s a great thing when pop music can be understated and dramatic at the same time.

Wand – Bee Karma (Drag City)

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A lovely loud/soft kinda thing from Cory Hanson and buds.

Again (as on his great solo album from last year) he sounds scarily like Marc Bolan and the loud bits here are not a million miles from the hip swinging boogie that T Rex brought to the world.

But I must say the soft parts take the prize for me.

Winsome.

Twinkling.

Tender even in their vaguely psychedelic demeanour.

When the band crashes in it all crackles with intent.

The Comet Is Coming – Slammin (The Leaf Label)

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TCIC are releasing a special edition of last year’s stirring album Channel the spirits.

This previously unreleased track is part of the expanded package.

You know what to expect at this stage and yet it still gets the blood pumping.

Saxophones.

Jagged bass pulses.

Spacey bleeps.

Groovy breakbeats flirting with jazz.

A savage cosmic stew.

Cool Ghouls – Only grey (from the album Gord’s horse, Melodic Records)

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Bracing new single from the San Francisco band...

...as if John Fogerty was stepping out with The Byrds.

So.

Muscular.

But cosmic in that harmony drift.

Glorious and uplifting pop music to coin a phrase.

Mikael Tariverdiev – Olga Sergeevna OST (Earth Recordings)

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Another great service to humanity by Earth Recordings in reissuing this...

... another sublime soundtrack from the Russian master.

Jazz and orchestral influences.

Piano.

Flute.

Harpsichord.

Vibraphone.

Strings.

Brushed drums.

Absolute bliss in a minor key.

https://tariverdiev.bandcamp.com/

The Clientele – Everyone you meet (from the album Music for the Age of Miracles, Tapete Records)

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Sometimes a plainly gorgeous piece of music is enough.

Other times the softly muted fanfare of brass like the beloved sound of Eric Matthews can make all the difference.

No sense of Mr Matthews’ baroque flourishes here though. More akin to some of The Byrds’ subtler experiments. Around the Younger than yesterday album when David Crosby in particular struck out on a tantalising dreamy limb before heading off into the sunset.

There’s a distinct domestic feel. An idyll. As Alisdair MacLean details a daily routine around Silver Street and singing strings buoy up every word.

It amounts to a kind of soaring chamber pop as poignant as it is uplifting.

Snapped Ankles – Hanging with the moon (The Leaf Label)

Another wonderful clatter from the English duo ahead of the debut album Come play the trees.

Electronics.

Urgent buzzing pulses.

Perfunctory drumming.

Garage rock whoops.

Yes.

Come Play The Trees by Snapped Ankles

Matthew Bourne – Isotach (The Leaf Label)

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Something about the spareness and spaciousness of this music went perfectly with cool breezy nights in the middle of nowhere French countryside lately.

Piano and cello is all that’s involved for the most part...

...well that and the essential element of the room in which it was recorded.

The space.

Long cello bows.

Hanging piano notes.

Plus of course the unbeatable touch of Mr Bourne.

Classical music (if you wish) with a wonderful feel and tons of heart.

A beautiful record.

Isotach by Matthew Bourne