Saturday, April 30, 2011

Same Road - Sensem przekaźnika jest przekaz

Quite possibly the BEST psychedelic rock band in Poland right now. Especially after this album. Mind-melting fuzzed out stoner slooooow-burners. "This is how we really sound". Highly recommended. Check out Same Road's previous albums in this post.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Skullorian

Truly trippy and murky sound collages by Cologne, Germany based Thomas Gerendás, co-founder of Ghetto Naturalist Series label. Mangled tape loops, found sound, field recordings, synths bleeps and noisez create a thick psychedelic soup in the style of the Skaters, but more cohesive (but still fucking weird!). Check out Thomas' blog, too!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Electroluminescent - Bleeds Light 1998​-​2011

A wonderful compilation spanning 13 years of Hamilton, Canada's Ryan Ferguson's career in 13 tracks. Calm guitar workouts drenched in droning ambience, Teutonic synth excavations and Cluster-like ambient pop gems. Highly recommended.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Kyle Landstra

Bedroom lo-fi drone. Nothing revolutionary, but still very nice selection of moods, ranging from bleak, cold, almost nightmarish soundscapes to slow, somewhat melancholic bliss. Apparently the dude has a tape coming up on Sacred Phrases this summer. Rad! In the meantime, listen and download his first two albums from his Bandcamp.


Review: Reedbeds - G'Morning Gomorrah (Self released, 2011)

Sacramento, CA's mysterious Carter Mullin released his album in an insanely-limited run of 15 copies. Each one of them is completely DIY - from the cover, which is ornamented with a squid-like object drawn with a pencil with something that looks like lipstick. The CD-R, which is not labeled in any way, is housed inside an envelope made of toilet paper. On the other side of the package there is a handwritten project and album name: "Reedbeds - G'Morning Gomorrah". Inside the package, together with the CD-R, is a neatly written piece of paper saying which copy this is (mine was 9 out of 15), and the time of recording.
G’Morning Gomorrah, together being about 50 minutes long, is a sort of a “fundraiser” album, released to collect money to record another, “proper” Reedbeds album. And what a fundraiser it is! The six untitled tracks oscillate between pastoral lo-fi guitar improvisations (with field recordings) in the style of Jewelled Antler roster (especially Loren Chasse) or the slow jams of Thoughts on Air and slowly evolving synthesizer-based drone pieces in the style of early Jeff Witscher (think Marble Sky at its most dronish). The fourth track gives a slightly creepy rendition of musique concrete with old song samples mangled beyond recognition, reduced to a set of droning ghost choirs, suddenly coming into existence and fading just as abrubtly. The last, longest track embodies the albums “ear to the ground” approach, enveloping the gentle synth notes with quiet hum, like a quiet wind going through the forest.
Reedbeds’ album, although extremely limited and not as “official” as other releases offers a relaxing journey through a variety of aesthetics and might be an interesting (if extremely obscure) link between the guitar-based improvisational ambience and the synth drone scene.

Apparently, the last copies of the albums are STILL available at http://dreamfieldeditions.blogspot.com ! Grab them, because I think they will be gone any moment now.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Kplr, Outer Spacist & Worker

Three nice tapes from Canadian label Prairie Fire Tapes and it's subsidiary Dub Ditch Picnic. Kplr is an abstract, glitched-out journey in the vein of recent KFW releases, Outer Spacist offers a one-sided tape of fun psychedelic rock and Worker is a heavy, heavy drone doom tape.



Wednesday, April 20, 2011

4/20 special post

Hello everyone! In commemoration of the 20th of April, I'm gonna post some of my favorite psychedelic/experimental albums. Some of them you might already know, some might be a nice surprise.

FOR THOSE FALLING ASLEEP:

FOR THE HYPERKINETIC ONES:

FOR THE FREAK FUNKERS:
Sunburned Hand of the Man - Jaybird

FOR THE MYSTICS:

FOR THE INCENSE BURNERS:

FOR THE ALL-AROUND LYSERGIC TRAVELLERS:

FOR THE MINIMALISTS:
 Steve Reich - Music for 18 Musicians


FOR THE IMPROVISATIONISTS:
 Matta Gawa - Ba 


FOR THE NOISE ROCKERS:
Magik Markers - The Voldoror Dance
Part 1
Part 2


FOR THE HEAVY STONERS:
Sleep - Dopesmoker


FOR THE COSMIC TRAVELLERS:
Acid Mothers Temple & The Cosmic Inferno - Anthem of the Space

FOR THE PLUNDERPHONISTS:
Negativland - Escape from Noise

FOR THE FURRIES:
 Racco-oo-oon - Is Night People

FOR THOSE FALLING ASLEEP AT THE BEACH:
Sun Araw - Beach Head

FOR THOSE WHO DRIVE UNDER THE INFLUENCE (OF SOMETHING OTHER THAN ALCOHOL:)
Kraftwerk - Autobahn

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Uton free archive


Here's a real treat for the fans of the Finnish underground psychedelic scene. A truly vast (and I mean VAST, as in: it would take WEEKS to listen all the stuff) archive (hosted on Freemusicarchive.org) of free albums by Uton and assorted psych/experimental acts. Fucking incredible. I don't even know where to start.


Quilt - We Have Layers of Skin

And now something for the fans of the harsher end of the electronic spectrum, but still somehow staying in the dreamy drone/new new age territory. Pastoral analog ambience vs. sounds ranging from ridiculously overdriven synth drones to pure, in-your-face, harsh wall noise. Think you can handle it?

Giant Claw - Midnight Murder

Keith Rankin's electronic goodness. Equal parts whimsical and dystopian richly ornamented kosmische synths with a bit of chiptune on top. Worth getting for the opening track alone, a sequencer bliss, which later kicks into a great minimal techno beat. Preview the album on Bandcamp. Cassette available on Orange Milk Records.

Black Zone Myth Chant - Straight Cassette

Strange dubby looped beats and synth journeys with ultra-sensual slowed-down spoken word passages buried deep in the mix. Think hi-fi James Ferraro meets High Wolf (well, it IS High Wolf, after all). Available for free from Bandcamp and as a tape or CD-R from Winged Sun Records.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Review: Navel - Ambient 1: Music for Spaceports (Taping Desk, 2009)


The Stuttgart ambient duo Navel created a tribute album to Brian Eno’s seminal Ambient 1: Music for Airports from 1978. But they don’t limit themselves to a cheap re-enacment of Eno’s ideas. It is more of a tribute to a tribute: after all, Eno was immensely influenced by German kosmische musik in the 1970’s. It was his work with Cluster and Harmonia that ultimately led to the creation of the Ambient series and the conceptual foundations of the genre “ambient”. Side A of the vinyl is entitled “Music for Spaceports” and is an obvious reference to “1/1” off Eno’s Music for Airports LP. The sound here is much richer, and unlike Brian’s original, it is based almost entirely on processed guitar sounds, as opposed to processed piano section on “1/1”. The sound is much richer and filled with various textures – unlike Eno’s track, which was raw and consisted only of piano note intervals, the sound of “Music for Airports” is filled with drones and trademark note intervals, which are sparse and tasteful.
What distinguishes this album is how German it sounds – it is truly a tribute, from Germans, to Germans (and a Brit inspired by Germans). The artwork and the titles are filled to references to kosmische musik and ambient pioneers. The cover photo may or not be a nod to the Begegnungen series by Eno, Moebius, Roedelius & Plank. The pictures at the back are obvious tips of the hat to the mysterious diagrams of Eno’s Music for Airports. Side B, entitled “Très Cosmique” refers to Harmonia’s „Sehr Kosmisch” off their Musik von Harmonia LP. Despite the Harmonia reference, the track harkens back to Ash Ra Tempel’s 1975 Le Berceau de Cristal. Blissful, slowly pulsing, string-like synths envelop the listener in a beautiful, although barely noticeable melody accentuated by slow and minimalist guitar playing.
Navel have created a beautiful tribute to their German ancestors and teachers. The duo took 30 years of development of the genre and added modern production techniques to produce two sides of progressive, relaxing ride on waves of the cosmic ocean. Let’s hope we live to the times when actual spaceports will be built and this album will be rediscovered and played while waiting for the next rocket to Mars.


Review: Lee Noble - Our Star, the Sun (Moon Glyph, 2010)


Los Angeles based multi-instrumentalist Lee Noble built his signature sound around vintage, dusted analog drones. But unlike many lo-fi electronic artist of this time, he doesn’t limit himself to synthesizer only. Lee is a multi-instrumentalist adding a folk-like sensibility to the all-machine music. To my mind, Our Star, the Sun is one of the best Lee Noble release, if not the best. Side A begins with “The Powers of Ten” which is quite possibly the best track Noble has ever created. A 11-minute epic synth journey through cold nebulas billions of kilometers from home, this track is immensely melancholic and beautiful tale of an estranged astronaut who knows he will never get a chance to go back home.
The mood of melancholy and sadness is a staple of many of Noble’s releases, and on Our Star, the Sun it is more pronounced than ever. The tracks are lo-fi, truly bedroom-based miniature ballads of pain and redemption sprinkled with modest synth ornaments, the standout one being “794-9065”, where the rudimentary ambience sets mood for barely audible acoustic guitar and silent moans and “Life Under a Double Sun”, where an acoustic folk ballad buried beneath electronic pulses creates a beautiful unity, like a strange space age singer-songwriter.
Lee Noble created a completely new and idiosyncratic sound combining retro futurism with a simple song format, deeply emotional, experimental, personal and introverted. Our Star, the Sun and Noble’s work in general will appeal both to hardcore drone-heads and fans of singers-songwriters. Watch this guy, he will surprise us many times in the future.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Snake Pride - Twin Sisters

Free improv guitar duel skronk. Lo-fi, abrasive and noizy. Reminiscent of Fushitsusha. The only thing that's missing is a some maniacal drumming.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Rug - Deep Sky Clusters

Uberstrange hypnagogic sampledelic murkiness. Sparse hip hop beats, distorted vocalizations, lo-fi aesthetics, funky flutes, chopped & screwed snippets sprinkled with primitive synth pulses and tape experiments. Weird as fuck. Blazin' to make music to get blazed to.

(not the cover, but this pic is hilarious)

He Can Jog - Songbook

Nearly 40 minutes of wonderful ambience from Milwaukee's Erik Schoster aka He Can Jog. Side A ("Saturday on Flushing / Bowing") is a glitchy folktronica anthem set to a slow beat in the vein of Four Tet, Side B ("The Fire Engine (for Mason) with Echo") is even better, a dreamy drone float, shimmering and ever ascending. The cassette is still available on Listening Party Records.

Lee Forest - Leaf Auras

Spring analog drone ambience from Chicago, IL. Pretty melodies and slow beats. Good for a walk in the woods.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Review: Greg Davis - Eyebright (Agents of Chaos, 2011)

Greg Davis' offering from Jeff Witscher's Agents of Chaos gives us two sides of widely different approaches to electronic music. "The Identity of Relative & Absolute" takes up the entirety of side A and is an abstract patchwork (see what I did there?) of skeletal, echoed and glitched out synth madness, topped with Greg's voice reading a poem under the same name as the track. The poem, read in a deadpan manner, processed almost beyond recognition (with some words still recognizable under pointilistic noise), becomes less a work of poetry and more a dadaistic stream of consciousness, a Kurt-Schwitters-meets-Florian-Hecker affair. The track is an ever-changing amoeba of sound, clicking sequences intertwining and stacking upon one another, slowing down and speeding up at a whim. Around the 10 minute mark, a rudimentary wall of synth drone envelopes everything else, pulsing and changing channels from left to right to make way for more dada zen poetry. The drone then graduallaly disintegrates, changing pitch at first, finally devolving into a deranged assault of amphetamine-fueled synth patches and fragments of sequences falling apart.
Side B, entitled "Full Spectrum (Part IV)" gives a rest and a shelter from the aggressive synthesis of side A, with shimmering drones and gentle pulsations which also speed up and slow down, like a relict of the previous track, still reminding us we are with Greg Davis here and that we should remember what he's capable of. But thankfully, side B is over 20 minutes of healthy floating bliss. Greg Davis surely is a synth giant, capable of creating engaging contrasts and adventurous atmospherics. I also can't stop to admire the packacing - Agents of Chaos is on the top of the game with their neat, clean-cut packaging giving all the information you'll need about the tracks, the time and the label's address. With the label's beautiful, futuristic artwork and cutting-edge electronic music I have a feeling this isn't my last time with this Agents of Chaos (as a matter of fact, I'm eagerly waiting to buy Personable's Human Disco from the very same AoC batch)!

Greg Davis' Eyebright is still available of Mimaroglu.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

UUUUUU - The Astral Travels

In September 2010, I posted an album called Prescient by a Scottish ambientalist Derek McArthur, alias UUUUUU. Now it's the time to post another album by UUUUUU, entitled The Astral Travels. The new album is even more fully-realized and much deeper on the compositional level. With eight tracks, four of which are over 10 minutes long (and the remaining four not much shorter!) - 75 minutes total, The Astral Travels is an immense journey, spanning across vast mindlands. Listen with your headphones on. Highly recommended.

Falling into Lucidity (from 'The Astral Travels') by uuuuuu

UPDATE: Canada's Private Collection Tapes released "The Astral Travels" on CD-R in an ultra-limited editon of 42 copies. Grab it while you still can!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Sunflare - Young Love

Seeing as this blog appears to suffer from a severe lack of energetic, blown out psychedelic rock, I give you Sunflare. Four tracks of in-your-face fuzzy High Rise worship. Available at Cubic Pyramid. Good stuffz.

METACOMET

METACOMET are Christina Boyd, Max Gardner and Ian Staub. Together they play slow, desolate, ambientalistic psychedelic bluesy rock. Boyd's dreamy vocals remind of Grouper and Gardner and Staub's guitar work bring the likes of Barn Owl and Ulaan Khol to mind (especially Strange Riders, which contains three lengthy stellar improvisations). Recommended!



Monday, April 4, 2011

Review: Bee Mask - From a Will-Less Gigolo of a Divinity to the Gore-Spattered Lion on His Own Hearth, Odysseus Becomes "Odysseus" (Deception Island, 2010)

Bee Mask is an alter ego of Philadelphia, PA citizen Chris Madak (previously Cleveland, OH). Over a few years, Madak's music has evolved from the cold, static, skeletal endless drones to a much smoother (and more diverse stylistically) entity. With an incredibly long and playfully unwieldy name "From a Will-Less Gigolo..." offers a travel through many different zones of experimental electronics, ranging from melodic suites to abstract acids in the style of Morton Subotnick. Side A begins with a majestic synth miniature, a synthetic symphony topped with a dreamy lead, which sounds like a sci-fi guitar soundtrack. Then the styles change at an almost kaleidoscopic pace, even though each side clocks at a little bit more over 10 minutes, it leaves a feeling of being much longer - each section is atmospheric enough to fully immerse the listener. The wall of chimes, a quiet, introspective melody slowly turns into cold, minimalist drone in the style of Bee Mask's earlier releases like "Elusive Lunar Bow". Once it dissolves into nothing but a slab of somewhat muted white noise, a sequenced bliss begins to emerge, only to fade again as the side ends.
The beginning of side B (both sides are untitled) is eerily similar to the beginning of side A and is a straight continuation of the synth workout at the very end of side A: a short kosmische sequencer-driven introduction gives way to an abstract soundscape with speech samples sped up beyond recognition, distant synth squeals and what appears to be echoed, sparse Roland TR-808 drum samples. This abstract painting of sound gradually changes into a chilling chime melody slowly fading into trademark early Bee Mask glacier drone ornamented by occasional analog bleeps and bloops. The tape comes to an end with a hazy organ suite propelled by short, needle-like sequenced notes. "From a Will-Less Gigolo of a Divinity to the Gore-Spattered Lion on His Own Hearth, Odysseus Becomes "Odysseus"" is a great step in Chris Madak's progress- the number of different moods and style he can touch is damn near unbelievable and I feel in my bones that he can create something truly breathtaking in the near future.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Their Only Dreams

Their Only Dreams is an incredible psychedelic pop/lo-fi/psych rock/synth pop one-man project, all led by a righteous bro going by the name of David Lyudmirsky. This is a really good project - incredibly well produced and insanely catchy. Hypnagogic glee. Plus David has some strong opinions, quote: "I am getting totally dejected by every so called "psych blog" that you see on altered zones. That is psychedelic fashion, not psychedelic music." I already like him!




All about Dynamic Views for Readers

All about Dynamic Views for Readers

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Review: Geoffrey Sexton - Suburban Sun Births (No Kings, 2011)

One of the most interesting things about minimal ambient and drone music is how rich in different textures it is. How many different moods and feelings can be expressed in a long, sustained sound - very small things can decide whether we're floating in a sea of bliss or we're shivering from the cold sounds. Geoffrey Sexton's tape definitely veers toward the latter - this album is definitely in the dark ambient/drone camp. Side A consists of a single droney ghost choir - bassy, cavernous and so, so incredibly cold. Like a brutally rudimentary, bedroom version of Lustmord or the darkest, spookiest moments of Super Minerals' "The Pelagics" stretched into some 15 minutes (the whole tape is a c30). Toward the end of the tape a relentless pulse kicks in, adding even more into the sense of dread. Side B begins with even more sonic wasteland - wasteland being a very good sense of the word, considering it sounds eerily similar to that music in Fallout 2 when you just stop in a random place on a map and wander the empty, endless desert. The layers are numerous and thick with barely recognizable remains of what once sounded like a string instrument. Few minutes into side B and the ambience dissolves into the high point of the entire cassette - a series of reverbed funeral, solemn trombone (or something which at least sounds like a brass instrument)notes, which create a slow, hypnotic melody, like a requiem over a dead world, a previously mentioned sonic wasteland. To sum everything up, Geoff Sexton (who is an experimental filmmaker) created something that could very well be a soundtrack to one of his films - bleak, unsettling and incredibly cinematic. A strong start. Recommended.


Geoff Sexton excerpt by No Kings

Review: Cloudland Ballroom - Illusion Circles (Aguirre, 2011)


It appears that the psychedelic bedroom electronic music underground reached a point where the reference points in music description are not made only to kosmische musik pioneers of the 70s and the ambient/new-age performers of the late 70s/early 80s but also to the other psychedelic bedroom electronic bands of the 2000s. Such is the case with the Cloudland Ballroom: the blurb at the Aguirre Records website likens the sound of Illusion Circles to early Brother Raven (and JD Emmanuel, too, but that only proves the first part of my argument). BR was “revolutionary” in a way that it tried to separate itself from the “guy holds down a synth key for 15 minutes” aesthetic and go for actually short, richly melodic and rhythmic tracks – Cloudland Ballroom does the same on Illusion Circles – there’s a great progress since the first album (released on Sacred Phrases), which fit the loooong droooone description. The 40 minute cassette is divided into 12 tracks, 6 tracks on each side. Unfortunately, the sides are not labeled in any way, so it’s kinda hard to guess which title fits the music. This isn’t entirely bad though; the mystery surrounding each side allows to play a little game of guessing – which title fits the track better? The music itself has a warm, vintage (duh) feel. The new age athmospherics are present throughout the entire cassette, always dreamy, never kitschy. One of the tracks even features vocals vocodered beyond recognition, which become just another synth layer over the pulsating sequencer and the soft drone. Actually, soft drone might be a good description for the entire cassette: but it’s not drone either; while sustained notes are present in most tracks, they are not the main focus – the listener is immediately drawn to cosmic melodies and squiggly effects, beautifully packaged in a hazy lo-fi atmosphere. Illusion Circles is a good album not only for fans of Brother Raven, but also for people who look for something beyond the usual drown-yourself-in-monotonous-sound dirge, something with tightly constructed structures, short and to the point.

The tape is still available at Aguirre Records. Grab it while you can!

Apparently, James has put the entire Illusion Circles on Soundcloud, not available for download, but now you can listen to the entire album!
Illusion Circles by Cloudland Ballroom