Stijn Hüwels & Tomoyoshi Date – 遠き火、遠き雲’ ​(​A Distant Fire​,​ A Distant Cloud)

laaps Records is a French label releasing quality ambient music.  This one seems to be their latest, a calming wash of sounds composed by Belgian composer Stin Hüwels in collaboration with the Brazilian-Japanese composer and sound artist (and emergency room doctor!) Tomoyoshi Date. The music is a mix of organic and electronic sounds, gentle plonking …

Various Artists – The Hired Hands: A Tribute to Bruce Langhorne

We will be celebrating Memorial Day with my family today, and in honor of the holiday, we offer up this compilation dedicated to American guitarist Bruce Langhorne, who influenced so many indie musicians that it’s a wonder so few outside of this select club have heard of him. Byron Coley, whose writing influenced my music …

Sailcloth – Woodcut

A pleasant find.  Alex Luquet, the aforementioned Sailcloth, is an American composer based in Pennsylvania who works with a double bass, synthesizers and guitar which, in turn, produce engaging drone-scapes.  The tones are rich, easy to get lost in (you might be picking up on a theme in that I really enjoy letting my mind …

Samo Salamon & Hasse Poulsen – String Dancers

Musicians never cease to amaze me.  Despite the horrible conditions which have led to worldwide lockdown, artists like Samo Salamon, a guitarist out of Slovenia, and Hasse Poulsen, originally from Denmark, manage to weave together an acoustic guitar-only album of improvisations that don’t sound like what you normally associate with “improv.”  It’s a mellow album, …

Various Artists – Haute Culture: A Rough Guide To Russian Contemporary Jazz Music

Dave Summer penned an article on the state of Russian jazz today, and one of the featured releases was a compilation of artists featured on the Rainy Days record label.  This is a great way to explore these innovators, including saxophonists Azat Bayazitov and Andrew Krasilnikov, bassist Makar Novikov, drummer and percussionist Sasha Mashin and …

UUTAi – Dope

Some years ago I had the pleasure of coming across a Sakha (Yakutia)-based singer called UUTAi who left me a bit stunned and gobsmacked, as I had never seen such a wild performance with wailing and Jew’s harp.  Going forward a few years, one of my dear colleagues and friends in Siberia, Daryana, presented this …