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Various Artists, Blue Chair Red Chair [ClickClickDrone – CLICK08, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

click08_red_blueA very good compilation released by ClickClickDrone and as any good label compilation this is a showcase of their artists and the different styles they represent. ClickClickDrone is one of many prolific so-called CDR labels (a distinction that becomes less clear by the minute) and “Blue Chair Red Chair” is their eight release. CCD was started and is maintained by recording artist: Boc Scadet. The ties to another quality label heavily featured here at the E-desert becomes apparent by a quick glance at some of the 14 contributing artists and that label would of course be the lovely Boltfish Recordings. Another liaison is the one to the newly started October Man Recordings, also incidentally reviewed here not long ago. It’s also nice to see that Gagarin has contributed with a track, if there’s not a double-ganger that would be the same Gagarin who released the nice sounding “Earthling” album on “Geo Records”. The “Blue Chair Red Chair” album weights in at 14 tracks all in all and everyone with their appeal dependent on personal taste. Z-arc’s “Field Lines”, Boc Scadet’s “Ibiil” and Mint’s “Shoes too Big for Her Feet” deliver warm sounds and healthy beats, well balanced and very enjoyable. Shirase opts for ambience and does so successfully in “Stellar Mapping”. October Man with Landis takes an acoustic detour in the friendly “”Fault Line”. Photobook’s “Casioland” is decidedly pop-influenced and comes with vocals to boot. The Ileons’ “The Foe has Mastered Sleep” features a piano intro and some jazzy feather light beat. Lum’s “Glowfly” returns to ambient territory and sets the mood with gentle guitars accompanied by atmospheric sound in a virtually beatless track. Gagarin offers “120cms” void of beats, plentiful of atmosphere and a subtle bassline framing the track. The Gosub Routine brings the beat back in the gritty “Routine 5” a really nice track with menacing setting and industrialised handclap and Cheju of Boltfish fame keeps the beats alive in “Datec” another great sounding effort by Cheju. The beats set in dance floor mode, excellent build-up and a bouncy bassline to keep things moving forward. Colamm’s “Relmm” a drum machine fuelled track with competent programming and a good selection of sounds and The Rumblist’s “Mxfrmlhg” is heavily cut-up, displaying beats trickery in a nice way. Last but by no means least is the fourteenth track Zainetica’s “People More Fuel” an excellent track by this productive and talented artist. Especially in light of him also more or less simultaneously releasing a full-length album on October Man Recordings (May 2005) reviewed here at E-Desert. This track is awesome, with a prolonged call and response intro, which really doesn’t give away where the track’s heading. Then slowly the track’s structure gets its form and the beats works like magic with the unusual choice of sound source. Excellent atmosphere, plenty of forward movement and really, really nice beats! In short a very good track ending a very good compilation. The recommendation is to track down CCD and buy the compilation now.

Boc Scadet, Vessel in June [ClickClickDrone – CLICK09, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

click09_boc_scadet_vessel“Vessel in June” is the latest full-length album made by Boc Scadet and it’s out on his very own ClickClickDrone (CCD) label. It’s an accomplished album to say the least and it contains 11 strong tracks. The album has quite a sombre setting, great atmosphere, expertly chosen sounds, production, well crafted beats (where that apply) and in combination creating truly fantastic soundscapes. “Vessel in June” leans heavily towards the ambient side of things, but it’s not lacking a clear and distinct form on the contrary each track complements the other. A special note on “Ochre” the second track on the album and the masterful and minimal handling of beats and distorted bassline on it. And thereby intentionally or unintentionally making tribute to one of the best drum’n’bass tracks ever made. Boc Scadet in a different mood is to be found on the recently reviewed CCD compilation “Red Chair Blue Chair” (May 2005), a compilation well worth investigating in the same way that “Vessel in June” is. In short the “Vessel in June” album is excellent and it comes highly recommended.

Boc Scadet, Yleptic [ClickClickDrone – CLICK01, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

bocscadet_ylepticIn 2004 the very first ClickClickDrone release emerged and it was signed Boc Scadet, entitled “Yleptic” and it is simply delightful. It doesn’t have much in common with the latest offering by the same artist, the full-length album “Vessel in June” (May 2005) apart from the obvious fact that it is excellent as well. Boc Scadet clearly has the ability to encompass more than one musical style or orientation. The apt beats programming, bassfilled and lush forward moving tracks on his first CCD release are as mature and engaging as his droned out dystrophic ones on “Vessel in June”. The EP stands 6 tracks tall and is a great collection of contemporary electronic non-vocal music. You probably would have problems getting hold of one at this point, but I strongly suggest you try!

Christ, Seeing and Doing [Benbecula – BEN029, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

christ_seeing“Seeing and Doing” is it a Benbecula surprise? Not really, since we’re talking about the latest Christ release. “Seeing and Doing” is a lovely release (Incidentally I’m the proud owner of a copy of Christ’s beautiful Polynesque EP and still looking for a copy of his first full-length album.). The EP is comprised of 1 + 4 tracks, starting off with a mood-setting intro directly on to the piece de resistance “Marsh of Epidemics” a brilliant track with plentiful synthesized atmosphere, fairly cold, dry and fused with a superb analogue bassline and then there’s the minimal beat… very hard, crafted with surgical precision and quite excellently combined with the rest of the elements. “Marsh of Epidemics” is a track that flows on relentlessly and causes an instant replay by reflex. The latest Christ release and the remaining tracks reveal the work of a very talented contemporary musician, but let it be said “Marsh of Epidemics” completely steals the show and hence the 1 + 4. Benbecula’s series usually are not that high-numbered so get in there while you still can!

J.Auer, Assorted Elements (2004-2005) [Boltfish Recordings – BOLT015, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

auer_assortedJoseph Auer delivers the 15th bolt and he brings more of his minimal drum machine based tracks and displays them on the “Assorted Elements (2004-2005)” EP. There’re four tracks of four-to-the-floor with a twist “Roppongi Hills”, “Disconnect”, “Icefall” and “Points”. Maybe the house influences are showing even more on this release, it’s straightforward and directed to the curious part of any dance floor. What lies behind the beats and production is pure craftsmanship, just like you would expect from Mr Auer. A final word on the artwork and packaging, they are maintaining the same high standard as any of the previous Boltfish releases.

Karmøy, Landmarks [Boltfish Recordings – BOLT016, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

karmoy_landmarks“Landmarks” by Karmøy is the next EP to be released on Boltfish (May 2005). It will be Boltfish’s 16th release and Karmøy’s second (as far as I know). “Landmarks” contains six tracks in total and out of them two have additional producers. It’s the label associates Mint and Cheju who pitch in with a track each. Reportedly Karmøy hail from Iceland and consist of two members. On the release in question they display their insights on producing warm forward moving electronic music fitting Boltfish’s taste and mission perfectly. The EP starts of with “Solafjell” a track complete with aptly programmed beats, very engaging bassline and lovely melody. “Kopervic” continues along the same lines with no fuzz beats and a playful bassline carrying the track forward and just a minute hint of glitch. “Åkra” (the capital letter is supposed to look like that) demonstrates more of art of arranging and programming pulsating understated beats. Paying tribute to 808 State, Orbital and the fantastic hay days of analogue bliss maybe? Then comes a mix of the lovely “Solafjell” rearranged beats and altered tempo made in an interesting way. “Pivotal Moments (Mint’s Tundra Mix)” contains some really nice beats handling, strings en masse and superb melody, yup, it’s yet another very nice Mint production. “Adjunct (Cheju Mix)” concludes the EP and Cheju does what he does best: well-executed programming, melodic construction and quite a lot of atmosphere with a high nostalgic factor fused with high production quality. With 16 releases so far and a furious release schedule Boltfish is a label that goes from clarity to clarity.

Zainetica, Delicate Wings [October Man Recordings – OCTOBER MAN 3, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

zainetica_delicate_wings“Delicate Wings” is the title of an excellent album by the ever so talented Zainetica and the newly established October Man Recordings are the ones releasing it. The album demonstrates a perfect blend of beats, nostalgic yet updated and contemporary. It’s thoroughly enjoyable high-grade electronic music. The painstaking task of singling out a really good track fails miserably, simply because there’re too many of them. “Delicate Wings” stretches 11 tracks long and all of them are masterfully produced beats-filled melodic tracks. In short all you really need to have a nice (electronic) musical experience. In conclusion it looks like the empire is growing, you have October Man Recordings, Boltfish and ClickClickDrone acting in secrecy, independently and together they’re showing a hand of force. And artists like Zainetica play an integral part in these demonstrations of power!

Aitänna77, Ed Wood Wall of Sound (2005) [October Man Recordings – OCTOBER MAN 4, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

aitänna77_ed_wood_wall“Ed Wood Wall of Sound (2005)” is October Man Recordings’ newcomer Aitänna77’s latest release, hailing from Spain he does the honours on October Man’s fourth release. The EP contains four tracks “Adiòs Cousteau”, “You Left (Le Monde Sand Soleil)”, “Instrucciones Para Una Vida Mejor” and “Diptongo”. This release is quite different from the previous October Man offering and Aitänna77 is one of the growing numbers of musicians based in the middle land of acoustic and electronic music. Aitänna77’s quirky little melodies and various instruments, fused and electronically treated, create a sonic landscape that depicts the middle land perfectly.

Port-Royal, Flares [Resonant – RESCD012, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

rescd012_port-royal_flaresPort-Royal’s “Flares” is a new acquaintance as far as both labels and artists go. Resonant presents Port-Royal an Italian outfit that create electro acoustic music, relying heavily on guitars in their compositions. With “Flares” they’ve succeeded in making a wonderful debut album. On it they’re treading the fine electro acoustic line with the acoustically sounding layered guitars completely dominating the sonic picture and electronic manipulations that are made to great effect. It’s quite melancholic and very beautiful, but it’s not through-and-through ambience, there are moments that are rhythmically intense as well. The packaging is striking and the acquaintance of Resonant and Port-Royal is an equally pleasant one!

Melodium, La Tête Qui Flotte [Autre Directions In Music – MOULIN013CD, 2005]

May 18th, 2005 Comments off

moulin013The latest release from ADIM features a full-length album by Melodium entitled “La Tête Qui Flotte”. He released the very first ADIM recording “Parthenay EP” in 2003 when the label was established and now some two years later he releases their 13th record. ADIM has been spearheading the electro acoustic movement and any other label could not have put out this release. Melodium’s productions are still set in quirky, lo-fi and toy-like sounding mode, but his sound has evolved since the “Parthenay EP” days. The album contains 15 tracks in total and the variation on the theme is broad. As many other artists Melodium is exploring the characteristics of humanly emitted sounds, that is, vocals. Whether these explorations are successful or not are down to personal taste. A few tracks that stand out in my mind are “Mon Baromètre Mental” and “Greg Davis > Craig Davis” are productions that are as individually sounding as they’re excellent and all of them lack vocals “Interlude Pour Dépressifs” and “Gamm-recomposé” also have cinematic qualities. With “La Tête Qui Flotte”, Melodium and Autre Directions in Music adds another chapter to the story about individual sounding productions.