June/July/August/September/October/November stuff

Bit of a hiatus over the last few months… oh jeez, where to start with the thumbnail reviews, could be a (relative) waste of an evening…. so in the interests of getting this over with and posted, some have ’em, some don’t.

AMON TOBIN – Isam – gorgeously packaged book format, and an artist I’d forgotten about over the last few years – on the strength of this release though, I might have to backtrack.  No review, but a trailer vid for the live set-up accompanying the album should whet the appetite.

onwards…..

BIOSPHERE – N-plants – an unfortunately serendipitous release in that it takes  Japan’s nuclear power plants as its focus – though conceived and recorded before the tragic events earlier this year (an ongoing tragedy, though it’s largely vanished from western news-ken). It’s an altogether more sprightly and rhythm-focussed work than other recent releases – perhaps a poignant irony there.

TAMIKREST – Toumastin – I’m told this is their strongest set to date. Differently recorded perhaps, but the rhythms remain the same.

And this track (a single, I think) and its video are utterly gorgeous….

A bumper Cluster-related few months, with the following all released/rereleased…..

ROEDELIUS – Piano Piano  & Like The Whispering Of The Wind – two solo piano discs, one new, the other from 1986.

ROEDELIUS – Wasser Im Wind– classic early work, very much after the fashion of my favourite of his many albums, Wenn Der Sudwind Weht – so big thumbs up from this listener.

There’s also been a spate of new Roedelius material over the last few months in duet collaboration with ‘thrusting’ younger electronic players.

ROEDELIUS/SCHNEIDER – stunden

and

QLUSTER – Fragen & Rufen

At the same time, another member of Cluster, MOEBIUS, ploughs a familiarly idiosyncratic techno furrow with Ding.

ALVA NOTO/BLIXA BARGELD – Mimikry – took me a while to get around to buying this, despite my liking for both protagonists. The two talents don’t quite gell – but it’s promising, and it’s hard not to raise a smile to this track in particular…

STEVE MASON & DENNIS BOVELL – Ghosts Outside – part of a film festival goodie bag, so it almost got binned unlistened-to. Which would have been a shame – I understand that this is a dub reworking of a solo album from an ex-Beta Band member (just how out of touch am I getting?). It’s sporadically engaging – though not enough to have me seek out the source material.

ON/OFF – Mark Stewart, Pop Group To Maffia DVD

BRIAN ENO & RICK HOLLAND – Drums Between The Bells – hardback double edition. The spoken poetic word is the new nu-jazz in Eno-world, it appears. This, and its subsequent follow-up EP are a bit… (and I’m conscious of using this word too much at the moment) underwhelming.

MUSLIMGAUZE – In Search Of The Abraham Mosque – single track that weaves its way through low-key beats and ambience, pausing occasionally for respite. Just when you think there can’t possibly be any more decent material left in the archives, a gem slips out. For me, this is one of them, whereas another recent release – MUSLIMGAUZE/THE ROOTSMAN – On-Line Jihad – is entirely forgettable.

TUXEDOMOON – Unearthed – cd & dvd. The completist in me rears its head again – all of the music and video on this is already available with the Crammed 30th Anniversary box set released a couple of years back. The only difference is the cover.

MACHINEFABRIEK – Sol Sketches  & Diorama Vintermusik – you know what to expect – the pick of these three for me is the Bandcamp download of Vintermusik, one of his 3″cdep releases from 2007, around the time of the mighty Laween track that I still love so much.

CYCLOBE – Wounded Galaxies Tap At The Window – finally got hold of the cd version, having had this on vinyl for nigh on a year, unable to play it. Worth the wait though, their most accomplished set to date – the legacy of Coil seems in safe hands.

SUNS OF ARQA – Stranger Music – have I listened to this? I can’t remember. Which pretty much says it all really.

BEIRUT – The Rip Tide – back to familiar territory here, neither under or overwhelming.

ULRICH TROYER – Song For William –  a wee digi-dub gem from Austria of all places. Just when I thought I’d heard all the tricks this genre has to offer, Troyer adds a few unfamiliar ones. Deliciously wonky reggae.

THE RESIDENTS – Talking Light: Bimbo’s – not really been a fan of the Talking Light cycle/suite of albums/performances, bought primarily to keep my completist’s drouth at bay.

TARWATER – Inside The Ships – although there’s nothing really new here, this is their most mellifluous outing for a while.  Anyone reading this (hello???) know what the extra tracks are on the recent reissued cds?

ANDREW LILES – The Flesh Creeping Gonzoid & Other Imaginary Creatures: Volumes One to Six – A whopping great 6xcd box set as my introduction to the work of Andrew Liles, occasional NWW conspirator.

NATACHA ATLAS – Mounqaliba Rising – The Remixes – Ten years ago I’d probably have been all over this, and it’s a measure of how much my taste has moved on that I find most of the beats and treatments dated and pedestrian here. All this makes me want to do is bathe in the gorgeous accoustics and un-chopped/glitched voice of the album from which this lacklustre spin-off springs.

MAGAZINE – No Thyself – ‘return’ albums from reconstituted acts are most often pig-in-a-poke territory, you’re never sure what’ll be on offer – a leaden rehash of former glories or a brave strike into fresh territory.  Ultimately this is neither, but does enough to maintain hopes that, should they continue to work together, things will improve.

DAVE FORMULA/CHRISTINE HANSON – The Organ Of Corti – Serviceable kinda song-based jazz-lite, but a warning – the album’s final track is a throwaway embarrassment.

TOM WAITS – Bad As Me –  you know the guy, you know what to expect. And he doesn’t disappoint.

THE RESIDENTS – Coochie Brake/Lying Horse Rock – although hanging on to the Randy/Chuck/Bob conceit of the Talking Light series, this limited edition version of a work that’ll be given wider distribution early next year strikes out in new directions for the RZ – a new mythology to expand on, Spanish language used, a (mercifully to these ears)  retreat from recent song-based outings. First three tracks and Bitter Biter stick in the memory.

LEE ‘SCRATCH’ PERRY – The Return Of Pipecock Jackxson – finally, a cd reissue for what I think has been a great lost (i.e. only available via eBay etc… in its originala vinyl edition) Perry work, cobbled together during his last few months in his soon-to-be-torched Black Ark Studio. It’s brief, six tracks, but worth every penny. Shame they didn’t keep the original cover art, shabby though it was.

THE ORB – C Batter C – lovely book release (which arrived personalised to me, a pleasant surprise) containing a cd of remixes and a film (not watched yet).

DAVID LYNCH – Crazy Clown Time – It’s David Lynch. It should be great. Its not quite.

LITTLE AXE – If You Want Loyalty, Buy A Dog – Skip McDonald’s recent solo shows have been a revelation, but here he’s surrounded by a band and produced by Adrian Sherwood, taking his contemporary blues schtick into reggae-lite territory. It’s a mixed bag, and I’d love to see him solo again at some point.

WIRE – The Black Session – live artefact punted on their recent tour, caught at the Liquid Rooms in Edinburgh mid-November. Filed.

ON-U SOUND – King Size Dub – a mid-price On-U sound compilation, you know the territory.

Finally, as a sign-off, here’s a ridiculous earworm from Japan, Trippple Nippple’s – LSD single. Bow Wow Wow on amphetamines, in a good way…

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2 Responses to June/July/August/September/October/November stuff

  1. Mark G says:

    I think this blog is a great source of musical reviews – glad to see you caught up on 6/7 months in one posting! Always enjoy reading your thoughts on music here.

    • ayeball says:

      Thank you, kind Sir! I don’t feel that I’ve too much to offer, and the blog’s primarily intended to keep some chums spread out across the globe abreast of stuff that they might like to catch up on – for the most part from artists/musicians that they’re already familiar with. But I’m encouraged. Cheers! Stuff from December and January coming up soonish…

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