dance, glossy chilled electronica. Geometry is a smooth,
unwinding album of classy chillout that meanders up and
down in intensity around a tight flowing core. Establishing
a tasteful balance between melodic warmth and psychedelic
minimalism, Geometry charges the air with electrical intricacies
and bathes the listener in lush layers of consonant pattern.
Hi-tech touches and ethnic hints embellish the inviting
beats that tend to inhabit the danceable end of the downtempo
spectrum; although the pace drops from the euphoric heights
of heaving downbeat psychedelia right down to near ambient
tranquiLlity in places. There are plenty of deeply effected
guitar forms among the synths and some graceful piano lines,
plenty of variety in palette, pace and power.
arrives in a gorgeously sleek digipack: dark hues and sharp
graphics elegantly presented. The recurring imagery is of
time-lapse lights streaming across the various panels. The
front cover sees a human form entwined in a mesh of fine light
movements, the huge presence of some passing mechanism glowing
red behind. This main image continues across the back and
third outer panel, the pervasive darkness forming a ground
for white text. On the rear are track titles and website addresses.
Inside the theme of light in motion has become further abstracted,
more geometrical - horizontal beams running the length of
the open package. Panel one holds a generous inset section
of thanks; panel two brief credits, panel three the disc itself.
is the second full-length release from Nick Brennan as Tripswitch
and the debut from brand new label Section Records. Follow-up
to the 2005 Circuit Breaker, Geometry sees Tripswitch refining
his sound in all the right directions: very rich and deeply
saturated, catchy yet restrained; very relaxing without
ever becoming sugary. UK based Section Records is actually
owned by Nick and so the launch via Geometry is most fitting.
The label has a well designed website where you can listen
to releases and keep up with all the latest news at www.sectionrecords.com.
The label tells us that there are a number of singles and
remixes to follow.
saturated global chill.  is a powerfully emotive album.
The opener El Hai, featuring the distinctive voice of Ayten,
introduces the album with a lush cinematic mood piece
- soaring female vocalisations over a Middle Eastern beat
creating a heady exotic tone that seems to spread and permeate
everything that follows. Wafting, sonorous flute lines drift
across smooth electronic pads, ambient build-ups unfold
in leisurely reverie, choral voices juxtapose spoken samples
and some of the most stirring, downtempo electronica you've
heard makes each track moving, reflective and inspiring.
Beats are relaxing, yet vibrant and stirring; lifting into
drum and bass business, bleeping and twinkling in programmed
complexity or rolling along in languid, thudding regularity.
Ethic elements are blended in tasteful restraint, psychedelic
roots are earthy and grounded in melodic warmth and Asura
pleasingly explores the band's signature sounds with greater
depth and imagination than ever before.
presentation of  is beautiful - a broad Ultimae digipack
with captivating imagery throughout. The front cover (which
runs in panorama across the three outspread outer panels)
shows a crouching figure turning a stick in water creating
a spiral ripple that emanates outward. Within globular rocks
in shallow water are bathed in muted sunset hues. A sixteen
page booklet provides a thought provoking image to accompany
each track (I do love this aspect of Ultimae's releases)
credits and a few words adding to the interest. Thanks and
contact details are at the rear.
nowadays is basically Charles Farewell. Having passed through
various line-ups since inception in 1996 other members Vincent
Villuis, Christopher Maze and Alex Ackerman have moved on
concentrating the project into solo form. This latest album
demonstrates that Charles is more than able to deliver the
Asura magic. The ten tracks here are broken into two 'chapters'
entitled 'Before' and 'After' with five pieces in each chapter.
The label for delivery remains Ultimae as was the case with
's forerunner Life².
As is usual, you can listen to tracks from the album at
or you might want to visit the Asura
website to exlore further.
collaboration. This is a lively and intricate coming together
of two distinctive electronic identities. The West Coast's
Bluetech and Philadelphia's KiloWatts combine their talents
as Invisible Allies with the resultant EP being everything
you might hope for from such a venture. The duo take a fairly
cerebral approach to their music - burbling synth rhythms,
bubbly bass lines and bright beats rippling against spacey
ambience and lustrous melodic progressions. The main themes
are mostly subtle, restrained affairs - yet there's an emotional
punch to the music. Beautiful clarity and rich pads add to
the dreamy warmth of the music, whilst a serious attitude
and somewhat acidic choice of synthetic voices keeps the music
driving and dynamic.
have only a digital promo of this release and so have just
the cover image seen above. This image is a burgeoning digital
blossom in pastel shades of blue, turquoise, pink and green
against a white ground.
Invisible Allies is a new project from the
uniting of Bluetech and KiloWatts. Hyperdimensional Animals
is the first official release under that name and comes
as a ten track EP on release via Native State Records. The
ten tracks comprise five original compositions and five
complementary remixes from Mr. Projectile, The Great Mundane,
Erothyme, Bil Bless & Aligning Minds. Promotional material
explains: "Exploring futuristic spacefunk, textural
ambient, odd time signatures, complex harmonic developments,
detailed digitalia and a sublime sense of the exotic, the
first Invisible Allies EP, "Hyperdimensional Animals,"
gives a first look into what promises to be an exciting
and evolving conversation between two singular and eccentric
producers. There's a web site for Invisible
Allies where you can keep up with everything to do with
Project - Desert Phase Remixes
global downtempo. Kaya Project's 4th album is given the remix
treatment by a collection of some of the biggest names in
the business. The original tracks (previously
reviewed at Morpheus Music) are re-examined and re-shaped
into fresh versions incorporating aspects of dubstep, breaks,
glitch hop, techno and drum'n'bass; whilst always maintaining
a chilled exoticism. The tone of the recording here rises
and falls in intensity from the live feel and tropical heat
of Earthrise Soundsystem's Sundown, through the restless d'n'b
of Chaos By Design's Eye of the Storm, via the smooth chill
of Tripswitch's When Only Sand Remains into the cool Middle
Eastern drive of Interpulse's concluding 23 Towers. Further
variously distorted dub influences arise through Shahin Badar,
Liquid Stranger's grinding zap and grime and Opiuo's deeply
fractured dub and blues Dobra.
Phase Remixes arrives in a glossy digipack of four fold-out
panels. A warm red ground supports a series of concentric
circle patterns that call to mind the colourful ephemera of
far-off bazaars and the Western graphics of the pop-art movement.
The front cover presents a single large disc of many colours
that seems to take on a spinning motion, especially once the
smaller orbiting discs are noted. This design is extended
into an interlocking form of multiple swirls that spreads
over two further outer panels and two within also - track
titles and credits are tightly wrapped around the outer rims.
A fourth outer panel presents a pictorial summary of the Kaya
Project discography to date; the remaining inner space is
given over to purely graphic content.
Taylor and Natasha Chamberlain desert inspired source material
was released earlier this year (2010) fuelled by time spent
in the Sonoran Desert, the Thar Desert and the Northern
Sahara. Here eleven of the original tracks are remixed,
with 23 Towers benefitting from three strikingly different
versions by Eat Static, Biotone and Interpulse. Other collaborators
include such notables as: Tripswitch, 100th Monkey, Liquid
Stranger, Oblique Industries, Earthrise Soundsystem, Gaudi,
Chaos By Design, Opiuo, Bluetech and Seb Taylor's own Hibernation.
As with Desert Phase itself, the remix album is released
through Interchill Records. You might also be aware that
this is not the first evolution of this fertile source the
digital-only Ummah Oum Remixes EP having been put out just
a few months back.
Interchill promotional material describes Desert Phase Remixes
as "a digital melting pot of exotic influences and
genre-defying grooves for dancefloors everywhere.....global
fusion electronica at its finest [which shows] the remarkable
nature of intercontinental musical collaboration."
The Interchill website, of course, provides an abundance
of information and a chance to hear the album if you wish.
Rotation - Acoustic Tales
ambience and narrative soundscaping. Acoustic Tales sees
Field Rotation deep in the countryside; undulating textures,
expansive atmospheres and understated themes reflecting
the landscape and shifting nature of the environment. The
overriding impression here is one of ambient subtlety and
melodic restraint: electronic layers and environmental drones
occasionally flecked with static or crackle or flushed with
streams of hiss. There are aspects of downtempo, some low
beats and digital structures that will surely draw listeners
from the more serious minded fans of the genre. That said
though, Acoustic Tales is something more than an ambient
or downtempo album; there is a classical breadth and density,
not simply in the plaintive strings and piano touches that
lend their elegance to many of the tracks, but right there
at the heart of the music. Children's voices, brittle and
distant within the mix; plucked strings, pastoral, traditional;
bright chiming finger cymbals; the sober chords of an organ;
various percussive ephemera - all unite within these cinematic
vistas of light and ground.
Tales has a tone of contemplative sobriety, this is not a
trivial release of faddish mood music. Rather, there is a
sense of genuine intensity, of artistic commitment and pursuit
of authentic musical expression. Although delivered in earnest,
this is not an austere or self-important album; the tracks
have a fine balance between touching moments of beauty and
passages of intriguing texture. The classical elements bring
their inevitable associations, adding nostalgic dignity and
timeless warmth. These never feel out of place or simply included
as a nod to present trends; set into digital frameworks or
deep within sonic damage and audio haze the wistfulness of
bowed strings works a unique magic in Field Rotation's compositions.
is the case with releases from Fluid Audio, great care has
been taken with the presentation of this package. The letter
pressed cover is a monochrome print on earthy stock; the juxtaposed
forms of gathered birds and an entanglement of telegraph wires
capturing well the contrasts within the music. On the rear,
four single wires heavy with bird silhouettes trail across
the top left corner, seven lines of Estela Lamat's poetry
leading the mind into the inner content. A 20 page booklet
of words and pictures completes the set: attractive black
and white photographs portray the bleakness of the countryside
and the stark forms of industry; poetic verses bookend the
images, thought provoking words with a bite and air to complement
sound and vision.
Rotation is the ambitious, classically ambient project of
Germany's Christoph Berg. Follow-up to the Why Things Are
Different EP that arrived earlier in 2010, Acoustic Tales
is the first full length album under the title. Berg has
other sides to his musical persona highlighted on the Field
Rotation website (including some interesting collaborative
ventures) that seem worth keeping an eye on. What we have
here though, is an incredible debut, eleven acoustic tales
of stirring beauty and rare emotive depth. Fluid Audio seem
to have a knack for spotting quality products such as this
and presenting them with suitable taste and grace. Promotional
material provides some background to the music: "Christoph
Berg built this world throughout a two-year period, with
the stated aim of integrating the literary traits of Kafka
and Hemingway into an auditory form, seamlessly blending
cinematic character with a subtle and mature melodic personality".
On track four we can hear the familiar strains of Danny
Norbury's cello very much at home within the confident framework
of Field Rotation's mature compositional arrangement.
Acoustic Tales is to be another limited release of just
200 copies, not to be reprinted so you won't want to delayin
getting your hands on this one. If you'd like to explore
further before buying, Fluid
Audio has a rich presentation of sounds and visuals
at the label's website and, of course, you can learn more
WILL LIKE THIS ALBUM
music of Field Rotation is likely to attract a mixed audience:
downtempo fans that enjoy classical sounds and the most sparing
of beats will find plenty here to enjoy; ambient listeners
might well also be drawn by the relative sparcity of most
of the arrangements; Field Rotation also carries sufficient
gravitas to interest the modern classical listener.
soundscapes. Soundscapes Volume 1 is a collection of restlessly
shifting ambient drone compositions of a somewhat brooding,
isolationist nature. For the most part suggestive of cold,
bleak terrain or wind-blasted vistas the music at times becomes
more consonant as if a pale sunlight pierces the atmosphere.
Some tracks such as Bathyscaphe have a more soothing fluidity
that replaces the iciness with a pleasant drifting sensation
- yet even here a sense of solitude lies not far beneath the
relative warmth. The layered textures rise and fall in intensity
often welling up into a dense mass of sound, profound, urgent;
then occasionally ebbing away into wistful faintness.
first glance I thought that the artwork for this album was
just flat black. Not the case, somewhat reminiscent of Ad
Reinhardt's black on black paintings, black lettering lurks
within the not-quite-black of the background. As this is a
download only album, no other artwork exists at this point.
Volume One is a new album of ambient music by artist Edward
Rizo. The album marks his first ambient musical endeavour,
containing compositions that reflect on various moods and
imagery united via a common vision. It is the first in a series
of three contrasting soundscape albums to be released in the
near future. Volume One can be downloaded free of charge at
the artist's website: http://edwardrizo.bandcamp.com.
The album contains eight tracks mostly just a little over
or under the five minute mark.