• Music

    Kaelin Bougneit – Geograph

    After a few dark albums, I thought I would share something that, while also a bit darker than normal, shows shades of the Berlin School and rather gentle Industrial soundscapes.  Kaelin Bougneit is a composer and label owner (Subviolet Records) based out of Portland, Oregon, and this particular album has elements of not only classic ambient music, but of tones I tie to old TV programs like “In Search Of…” with Leonard Nimoy.  This triggered some pleasant memories for me, indeed.

  • Music

    Various Artists – New State Of Flux

    The second release from Raffaele Pezzella’s Unexplained Sounds Group’s latest acquisition, the magnificently dark Reverse Alignment record label. This is a different affair from yesterday’s compilation, which was more extreme in sound.  New State of Flux doesn’t have the same reach in terms of geography, but it covers music which is more focused, more intense, and gives a feeling of being part of a film-noir soundtrack.  Of particular interest to me was the piece done by Vongoiva called Palovankka, which you can hear below. Well done, as always.

  • Music

    Various Artists – Anthology Of Post Industrial Music From Balkan Region

    The first of two releases related to our friend Raffaele Pezzella (who performs under the name Sonologyst) for today. This release from Unexplained Sounds Group is part of a series of compilations of experimental and dark ambient music concentrated in different regions.  This one is particularly special to me as, though my birth city is Los Angeles, those who know me well know that the Balkans has served as a second home to me over the years.  Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Kosovo, Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Albania all seem to be well-represented, and musically, each track is up…

  • Music

    Yukihiro Takahashi – Saravah!

    This album works on so many levels.  There is a blend of Italian romance, easy listening, French chanson, sophisticated City Pop, bossa nova, a touch of schmaltz, and electro-pop all rolled into one fine album. Drummer Yukihiro Takahashi had just helped form the Yellow Magic Orchestra after leaving The Sadistic Mika Band at about the time this album came out (circa 1978), and his new bandmates, Ryuichi Sakamoto and Haruomi “Harry” Hosono, ably assisted him in arranging everything from synths and brass.  It’s an elegant album and would appeal greatly to those into everything from crooners like Al Bowlly and…

  • Music

    László Hortobágyi – The Amygdala Expedition

    This is quite a momentous occasion for me, as áMARXE Records out of Galicia, Spain, release an album by Hungarian composer László Hortobágyi which has been shelved since 1989.  The album was programmed specifically for vinyl, and áMARXE are releasing a small edition of 250 copies, no doubt of high quality. The story with László Hortobágyi is quite an interesting one, as I used to work many years ago as an A&R manager for Tone Casualties, a record label run by the animator Gábor Csupó, he of Klasky-Csupo, who released such cartoons as The Rugrats and Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, among…

  • Music

    Gadi Sassoon – Multiverse

    Gadi Sassoon is an Italian sound designer and composer whose latest release comes from the venerable Los Angeles-based record label A Strangely Isolated Place.  I had only heard one track of his work before, this coming from ASIP’s 2020 Compilation.  Though impressive, it didn’t prepare me for one of the bleakest experiences I’ve had listening to ambient music I’ve had since, perhaps, mid-period Lustmord.  If you listen to this album on headphones, be forewarned: the sounds will reverberate in your bones for a while afterward, and I say this as a compliment.  The tracks swell and disperse in a way…

  • Music

    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 tones, and a very, very relaxed atmosphere.  This could be music to sleep to, and I mean this as a high compliment. From their Bandcamp site: 遠き火、遠き雲 (Tōki Hi, Tōki Kumo / A Distant Fire, A Distant Cloud) is the second collaboration by Tomoyoshi Date and…

  • 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 wander to music – it is the best sort of music for me), and he’s joined by musicians who really seem to be in sync with his playing.  The personnel include: Alex Luquet: upright bass, keyboards, synthesizers, guitars Felicia Vee: drums on Red Woods, guitar…

  • Music

    Rami Moscovich – Capsules

    As far as electronic music releases go, Rami Moscovich does a nice job straddling Eno-esque ambient with Berlin School vibes reminiscent of 70s-era Tangerine Dream.  The jewel of the crown of this release is the track My Grandmother’s Apartment, where it sounds like Rami’s grandmother is reminiscing about old times in what sounds like Hebrew.  Enjoyable.

  • Music - Youtube

    ISQ – Ode To Myself (Arthur Baker Remix)

    ISQ are a band based out of London who have managed to carve out a rather nice niche in both the alternative jazz and house music worlds.  In this new release, their track, Ode To Myself, has been remixed by legendary producer Arthur Baker, who has worked his magic with bands like New Order and Afrika Bambaataa.  The vocals are smooth, the beats are warm.  This should make the rounds at all the summer dance hotspots.  If you prefer to hear this on Bandcamp, the song can be accessed here.  It sounds phenomenal as a FLAC file.