Amazing dark electronic LP from 1982.320
The long-standing Dutch anarchist punk group's magnum opus double album in many ways recall the extended collages of the Crass albums, whereby the sessions were not strictly performed by the entire group, but were in fact collections of solo tapes, ad-hoc collaborations, and improvised sketches. There are plenty of full-throttle Ex avant-punk tracks, however, and collaborators include numerous players from the free improvisation world, as well as members of Sonic Youth, who contribute their parts by tape and even apparently via telephone on one piece featuring Kim Gordon. Joggers and Smoggers marks a tuning point in the group's sound; from this point they would embrace more fully the aesthetics and methods of avant-garde jazz, free improvisation, and delicate European folk. Over the four sides, this is an excellent introduction to the labyrinthine world of one of the most inspired and inventive groups in European post punk. Highly recommended release from their expansive catalog, along with their collaborations with Tom Cora and the more strictly avant-rock album Mudbird Shivers, this is among their most focused and courageous work.
Readily available, but a perennial favorite. Brooding and gorgeous.
A masterpiece of unrivalled beauty and complexity, Bark Psychosis' Hex channels the experimentation of the group's prior singles into a more controlled setting; a series of atmospheric set pieces, the songs find a common ground between accepted musical formulas and avant innovation -- at first glance, tracks like "Big Shot" and "Eyes & Smiles" appear tightly structured, yet they avoid the dynamics of conventional songcraft like choruses and solos with remarkable dexterity. Similarly, both "The Loom" and "Fingerspit" are too melodic and finely honed to pass as mere ambient soundscapes, leaving the record best ascribed to a force not unlike alchemy -- Hex begins with base musical materials, but transforms them into something mysterious, haunting, and breathtakingly visionary.
With 32 strictly vinyl-only releases in its amazing history, they have maintained a strong and essential element of Berlin's technoid underground movement since 2001. Pom Pom reflects the monotone and hypnotic essence of techno. Pom Pom created a distinctive style larded with playful, bizarre and dreamy elements over the last years. The bass drum drives always majestic through our consciousness within our galactic journey through time and space. From cold space-beats to warm and exotic planetary rebel storms to heartbreaking melodies, the traveler can find everything in the Pom Pom space. Pom Pom doesn`t need titles or calculated design. Pom Pom always uses the black and undiscovered matter from outer space and puts the shiny stars and cosmic adventures into the sound storage medium in order to let you find the magic place we call space.
An album from the seminal highlife artist Prince Nico Mbarga. Here, he shows in all its glory his panco style, borrowing bits and pieces from reggae and funk and depending heavily on the basic soukous guitar and highlife rhythms. The basis of it all is still highlife. The album collects a number of his works from the African Onitsa label. The highlight is almost inarguably "Sweet Mother," his first (and maybe only major) hit from a relatively long career. Many of the songs sound somewhat similar to one another, but all retain the necessary groove consistently to make it a dance record. Pick it up as a fan of Prince Nico or as a general highlife fanatic. Looking for a display of the diversity of African music shouldn't lead you to this album, but it might make for an enjoyable ambient album at any given party.
Fats Navarro - The Complete Blue Note and Capitol Recordings of Fats Navarro and Tadd Dameron (1947-48)
One of the greatest jazz trumpeters of all time, Fats Navarro had a tragically brief career yet his influence is still being felt. His fat sound combined aspects of Howard McGhee, Roy Eldridge, and Dizzy Gillespie, became the main inspiration for Clifford Brown, and through Brownie greatly affected the tones and styles of Lee Morgan, Freddie Hubbard, and Woody Shaw.
Many valuable performances from the height of the bop era are included on this double CD. Subtitled "The Complete Blue Note and Capitol Recordings" and comprised of 23 songs and 13 alternate takes, the reissue features the great trumpeter Fats Navarro in peak form with three groups headed by pianist/arranger Tadd Dameron, in trumpet battles with one of his major influences, Howard McGhee, and on a remarkable all-star quintet with pianist Bud Powell and the young tenor Sonny Rollins; among the other sidemen are altoist Ernie Henry; tenors Charlie Rouse, Allen Eager, Wardell Gray, and Dexter Gordon; and vibraphonist Milt Jackson. In addition to such gems as "Our Delight," "Lady Bird," "Double Talk," "Bouncing With Bud," "Dance of the Infidels," and "52nd Street Theme," Fats is heard with the 1948 Benny Goodman septet ("Stealin' Apples") and Dameron leads a group with the 22-year-old Miles Davis. On a whole, this double CD has more than its share of essential music that belongs in all historical jazz collections.320.1
Lubomyr Melnyk's music sounds like nothing else. Melnyk acknowledges his debt to minimalism, and it's easy to see its influence -- rhythmic regularity, a steady pulse, and repeated patterns within a massive wall of sound that evolve over time, somewhat reminiscent of the effect of Reich's Eighteen Musicians and Eight Lines. Melnyk's music could never be mistaken for Reich's, however. One of its most striking attributes is its rhythmic complexity, which makes playing it a major feat of virtuosity; polyrhythmic patterns of three and four and seven and eight, for instance, going on simultaneously create an enormously rich contrapuntal texture, out of which new melodies are constantly emerging. The rhythmic patterns undergo continuous metamorphoses, so the contrapuntal relationships are in an ongoing state of flux. Melnyk's harmonies are nothing like Reich's, either. They range from multiple overlaid tonalities to the richly chromatic language of late Romanticism. The music has a feeling of a basic tonality, but a tonality that's so heavily ornamented with other tonalities that it's sometimes all but submerged. There are clearly defined modulatory shifts, and they keep the music fresh in spite of its relentlessly dense textures. The piece has a large-scale harmonic purposefulness in its movement from varieties of harmonic complexity toward a more conventional, sometimes ecstatic tonal clarity at widely spaced cadential points and at the end.Melnyk's performance boggles the imagination -- this is the kind of contrapuntal complexity characteristic of Nancarrow's Studies for player piano, yet he manages to keep the multiple melodic lines distinct and regular. His website claims he is on record for being the world's fastest pianist, sustaining patterns of 13.5 notes per second in each hand, and his performance of KMH makes that claim seem credible. (Unseen Worlds' release doesn't include the first 10 minutes of the piece; it begins with a gradual fade-in, which leaves the listener wondering how Melnyk gets his monumental opus off the ground. Bandura's release of the same performance is complete.) Audio Review called the original 1979 release of KMH "one of the ten most important albums of modern music." Any fans of minimalism and maverick experimentalism with an immensely attractive sound should check out Melnyk's phenomenal performance of his unique music.
The definitive recording of the guitar works of little known Haitian composer Frantz Casseus. Beautiful stuff.
Marc Ribot Plays Solo Guitar Works of Frantz Casseus is a 1993 album of solo guitar works by Frantz Casseus recorded by Marc Ribot and released on the Belgian label, Les Disques du Crepuscule. Ribot studied classical guitar under Casseus who fused the European classical tradition with his native Haitian folk elements. The album was recorded in New York City in 1989 and 1993.
American experimental music's foremost performer, pianist David Tudor remains as inextricably linked to many of the most groundbreaking pieces in the modern canon as their respective composers; long John Cage's most intimate associate, he also delivered virtuoso early performances of landmark works by Pierre Boulez, Earle Brown, Sylvano Bussotti, Morton Feldman, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and La Monte Young, many of them written expressly with Tudor in mind.
About the album:
A re-issue on CD of this classic. One of the great and wild "live electronic" pieces with sounds that Tudor once described as sounding to him like dinosaur howls echoing in pre-historic caves to timid, sweet calls of unidentifiable creatures.The original circuitry was designed by Tudor and Gordon Mumma.