Never judge a book by the dust jacket: Noah Peterson – Champagne Kisses #house #techno

•November 20, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Here’s one of those tracks that makes me remember to beware expectations and give tunes a chance. I was most recently reminded of this by Noah Peterson and his track Champagne Kisses. This came with a tag list of Cosmic gate, ATB, Dash Berlin, Paul Oakenfold, Armin Van Buuren, Above & Beyond, Ferry Corsten, Paul van Dyk, Markus Schulz, Arty, Rank 1, Solarstone, Infected Mushroom, Chicane, B.T., Aly & Fila, Gareth Emery. By and large a list of artists who don’t appeal to me. Too big room and too trance. But I gave this a half-hearted listen. And it turned out to be great.

What we have is a shyly leftfield idm track, full of blips and bloops. A kind of ambient experimental tune that happily ploughs its own furrow. Hard to reconcile with the biog that promotes him as a saxophonist. Nothing of that here, simply clever electronic music that skilfully balances the gentleness of synths with machine music harder sounds.

From the album Baseline 120: Electro Jams

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My House by MOOX #house #deephouse #electronic

•November 19, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Let’s get the week off to a bouncing start with MOOX. This time the Canadian offers My House. A fabulous main room house tune. Pulsating beats power the track forward. Smooth rippling synths give it a bit of contrasting chill. There’s nothing hidden here. It’s good time house. Smile on your face. End of.

Techno Sunday with BigBadBaz and Martin Den Hollander #techno #electronic #house #experimental

•November 18, 2018 • Leave a Comment

A couple of techno tracks for Sunday from BigBadBaz and Martin Den Hollander.

BigBadBaz is from the UK. According to LastFM “BigBadBaz (born Barry Christie on 3rd September 1983) is an English born dance music producer. Barry was born in Sunderland, Tyne & Wear but spent most of his life living in Northamptonshire.” But I recall him better as a bootleg artist on late lamented GYBO in the early noughties.

Here, he returns with Base 60. It’s something that’s kinda techno, kinda experimental and kinda dub. That lack of genre focus may make it harder for an audience to identify with the track but it is a lot of fun. A big smear of fuzzy bass distortion acts like jam in helping the track’s other elements stick together. On one half of the sandwich there’s stabs of dubbed house piano and hand clap beats. And on the other half a jaunty bouncy air. Get your bass on with BigBadBaz.

Next, Martin Den Hollander who rather wrong foots me by hailing from Bielefeld, Germany. His track Buelt is “a tribute to Techno and all those never ending nights in clubs…” That’s great and I’m all up for that. However, the track starts off in a stabby dubby deep house vein. It’s a whole bunch of anticipation and dub techno. This isn’t lost at 3am hammered beats. It’s a more after party come down following a long night. Perfect kitchen techno.

PM’s playlist: Nctrnm, Wake Before The Alarm and Sergi Odikadze #ambient #chill #house #electronic

•November 17, 2018 • Leave a Comment

It’s finally the weekend after a bit of a collectively stressful week in the UK. The on-going psycho-drama of Brexit got turned up to 11 with the publication of the Withdrawal Agreement, resignations aplenty and Theresa May doing wall-to-wall media for 24hrs. Gotta admire the stamina. Here’s a triple helping of music, if like the PM, you need to relax, reframe and refocus for the week ahead from Nctrnm, Wake Before The Alarm and Sergi Odikadze.

Nctrnm may have no idea what that intro was about, being from the USA. He is an electronic producer, songwriter, and graphic artist from Jurupa Valley, CA. The track is the delightful Hunter. He offers that it “is a downtempo song composed in G Major at the tempo of 100 BPM.” Accurate but not really letting you know how curious this is. It’s an ambient IDM track but starting, unusually, from a drum pattern that bobbles along. There are a range of drum sequences and background syth sounds that have a strangely calming effect. Like watching those executive toys of the 70s where metal balls swing back and forth clacking into each other. The spotify release comes with Driver. This ia a more synth driven chill piece.

Bandcamp (name your price)

Soundcloud

Spotify

Next, Wake Before The Alarm. From Japan (ゆるりとネットを漂うトラックメイカー。) the tune is Noir. It’s a lovely chilled piece, full of soft jazz elements and a sense of fun and abandon. This ripples and preens itself ready for the night time. Glad to be alive this tune skips lightly across life’s problems, making for the further shores of hedonism and a glass of fizz.

Third, from Georgia Sergi Odikadze. It is said that All Is Vanity – indeed it’s a title of a picture by Charles Allan Gilbert. But here we have Vanity as something far less self-regarding. This is more introspective. It’s chilled electronic of the hushed, almost not there variety. It’s beautiful in its unassuming way. It wraps itself around you, not with bombast but with warmth, with humanity. This track wants you to find a way to appreciate the day and being alive to experience it. I know that’s not always easy. But give it a go.

Epic ambient: Walter Mmari – From Beneath They Came

•November 16, 2018 • Leave a Comment

South Africa’s Walter Mmari returns with From Beneath They Came. This may or may not be about the end of days and the destruction that will ensure. I’m thinking Revelation 9:11 “A king, the angel of the bottomless pit; whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek Apollyon; in Latin Exterminans.” All a bit apocalyptic for a rather fine track but music has a power beyond words. Any how, we get strings that hint at a monumentality as they saw away. There’s also any manner of bassy or lower key tones. But what saves this track is the guitar line that weaves trhoughout. Offers a bit of hope. A bit of humanity. A bit of redemption.

The full text of what Mr Mmari provides for the track is “In the end days, Abaddon joins us on Earth to torture all of the lost souls. As Abaddon arrives from above, his minions rise from beneath us and thus begins the torture with no death. We can avoid this painful episode by finding ourselves, being the best versions of ourselves, and not drifting around Earth aimlessly. We are all created in our creators image, and our creator created us so that we too can create. Nature has all of the answers, all beings with life become the best versions of themselves, no one tells flowers to bloom, they do because that is what they are.”

or on soundcloud

Withdraw to minimal with Lowlives Industries and Jesse Woolston #minimal #electronic #neoclassical #ambient

•November 15, 2018 • Leave a Comment

 

A couple of minimally drawn ambient and drone tracks from Lowlives Industries and Jesse Woolston.

Lowlives Industries are from Italy and return with Mar Pacifico (Pacific Ocean, I suppose). This is a big smear of ambient drone. It’s almost limitless reach covers the slow undulating swell of held tones and the deep, deep depths of a slow bass drum. This is a vast track which makes the most of its eight minute length.

Next, another returner in Jesse Woolston. The track is Movement, taken from the album µstructure. It’s a much more minimally classical beast, owing much to the likes of Erik Satie or Olafur Arnalds. There’s a kind of overture tone to it (or whatever the closing bit of a symphony is called) all. It paints a broad landscape full of both fluid and geometric shapes and tones. In its own way the three minutes of this hints at bigger things to come. Do explore this lovely album on Spotify or to buy on Bandcamp in physical form with a photogaphy book.

Taken from the album µstructure

On Bandcamp

NEW: Catching Flies – Satisfied #downtempo #electronic #minimal

•November 14, 2018 • Leave a Comment

A new release from Catching Flies who has been appearing here for the past five years. This is one of the best, if not the best, of his work. Satisfied is the tune. It comes in three flavours (full, edit and ambient reprise) and they’re all great. This uses that kids chanting device much beloved of dance music but makes it feel fresh and new. A totally loveable track. Not just for the vocals but as much for the deceptively complex pumping tune that accompanies it. As Catching Flies explains: ‘the tune has so many different layers and tracks (186 to be precise!) and went through various different versions over time… so I wanted to celebrate that.’ This reaches for the skies and soars with seemingly effortless wings.

Available on Soundcloud

On Spotify

And Bandcamp

Blurb: ‘Satisfied’ is a slice of sophisticated dance music that nails the sweet spot between headphones and dancefloor. It sees Catching Flies focusing his attention on the dancefloor for the first time with stunning results – ‘Satisfied’ is highly textured, deeply melodic and effortlessly marries live instrumentation (guitars, harps, a string quartet…) with warm electronics. The single consists of a three-track package, including a more immediate Edit and an ‘Ambient Reprise’ which serves as a hazy recollection of the night before.