blog 2009/08/24 - An ipecac or a smorgasbord. MP3s for your face.
Bibio have been stacking great reviews for their 2009 album Ambivalence Avenue and it's got some next-level shit on it. But it's also a bit of a snoozer. I'll level with you, it's not close to Boards Of Canada in terms of beatsmithing, and not even near Flying Lotus, who barely output a cohesive listen.
Definitely an interesting LP to dig for beatheads, but like Prefuse-73 and Machine Drum, it doesn't hold up as a solidified sonic world and will be remembered for a single or two come 2012. Fire Ant here is the standout for me, with seductive cutups and talkbox distortion.
Brother Ali has a new LP on the horizon, and here is a preview from there, entitled "Us". So far so good, can't wait for it to drop.
Cortney Tidwell is representing here with 2 tracks from her 2009 album "Boys". The production here is wonderful, taking a great singer-songwriter aesthetic and filtering through a Morr Music rackmount in one track, and borrowing the St. Vincent mastering studio for others.
The album as a whole didn't melt my world, but I just know that I will be enjoying it on and off for the next 6 months. If these 2 tracks speak to you, definitely track down the album and get rewarded.
Eskmo - Agnus Dei: Eskmo (formerly Eskimo; hurray for Googleable names!) is here to kick our collective asses with the subwoofer. Up in the leagues of subheavy production that is only resided in by the likes of Rusko, Various Productions and DZ, Eskmo has one of the most original dubstep voices out there. (OK, most original next to Various Productions, who are currently top of tops. see below) Eskmo has a tonne of tracks up for purchase at Beatport.com, so go buy everything he's done. And at least the angels will have something awesome to bump when the apocalypse reigns down on us all.
I hadn't heard James Blackshaw before, and his 2007 LP "The Cloud Of Unknowing" just has me floored. Classical 12-string guitar wunderwalls of sounds and depth swirl over you. With a sense of delicateness borrowed from Loren Mazzacane Connors and stamina that would make Terry Riley applaud, this album is a remarkable instrumental work. Highly recommended.
If I had a magic wand that shot out fairy dust and performed non-consensual magical modification on you, the "shooting fairy dust" soundtrack would be James Blackshaw. (the dust would move slowly, k?)
Leslie Hall - Blame The Booty (NSL's Bottom-Heavy Remix): Booty bass music isn't meant to be taken seriously, but Leslie Hall reminds us about what is to be taken seriously: Booty. For the love of ass, copious and luscious, we salute you.
Mstrkrft ft John Legend - Heartbreaker: their last LP was panned across the board, but this surprising vocal pop single is redeeming. I am perhaps just relieved that the obnoxious hipster-bloghouse era is being signaled as officially over. We killed Dash Snow and made MSTRKRFT sound more like Jamie Lidell. There is a god.
I have always thought the world of Mexican electronic musician Murcof, ever since I first bought his debut LP Martes.
In a smart move, a producer finally hired him for soundtrack work, doing the entire score for Enlightened Blood (La Sangre Iluminada).
The film looks incredible, find more about it at http://www.lasangreiluminada.com/
Murcof's soundtrack work follows the similar orchestral glitch of the past 7 years, but included here is a special remix included on the soundtrack release that is just divine. Highly recommended: both the soundtrack, and the movie.
Passion Pit - Sleepyhead (Starsmith Remix ft Ellie Goulding): OK, I know there have been a bajillion Passion Pit remixes on here, but I keep getting surprised. History has shown that most invigorating thing to do for both your fans and your career is to release all of the components of your song and let everyone and anyone remix them. This results in a glut of shitty remixes, but results in a few choice ones too. But woah there lassie, what we have here is the most radical result of that experiment yet: A total vocal reworking of Sleepyhead with the falsetto being replaced with a woman, and the detuned bass chorus being replaced with a man.
Radiohead - Harry Patch (In Memory Of): Partch died like 25 years ago come September 3rd, so time for another memorial. Radiohead continues with their online trends, releasing this on their website for pay-what-you-can, so go get a higher quality copy there if you want. Personally, I think this track is a great example of WHY the album format is so important.
Ramesh B Weeratunga - Ring Of Fire: heeeeeere we go! I bet you weren't expecting an Indian dance version of Johnny Cash, now were you? HAVE AT YOU!
Streetlife DJs - Gunn Crime: One of my earliest heart-ons for electronic music came from the Art Of Noise. I just loved the short pink-haired woman smashing shit up! Any AOS rework that pulls it off well tugs at my nostalgia strings, and Streetlife DJs do it here with funk to spare.
The Tallest Man On Earth - A Field of Birds: This is the theme song for the website YellowBirdProject.com which gets indie rockers to design t-shirts and such. Definitely worth checking out.
tUnE-YaRdS - FIYA: When you think of indie, this is the ideal that crosses my mind. A recording of heart and sweat and skinned jeans that rejects the pure sugar-coated sap of the Juno soundtrack. Real emotion and presence, put out there in an any-means-necessary way. This is great.
Various Production - The World Is Gone ft Cat Power: As I mentioned above, Various Production are at the cream of the production crop. Bred of Skull Disco mutations, Rusko basslines and Funkstorung edges, I have been so amazed by their output in the last year. Top drawer, all the way. Oh wait a sec, let's toss Cat Power in to a song and make you wet your pants. This is as awe-inducing as when Karmacoma was first released.
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory - Everlasting Gobstopper: I am an avid collector of 50s/60s/early 70s electro-acoustic music, and the 1971 release date of this film marks it perfectly for my interests. The sounds of the Everlasting Gobstoppers machine are a delightful concrete wonder, mixing traditional foley work with a Warner Bros 1940s aesthetic. It is joyous complexities like this that we don't perhaps notice as youth, but are super fun to rediscover later on.
THIS WEEK'S TRACKS
Bibio - Fire Ant
Brother Ali - Us (Video Edit)
Cortney Tidwell - Bad News
Cortney Tidwell - So We Sing
Eskmo - Agnus Dei
James Blackshaw - Running To The Ghost
James Blackshaw - The Mirror Speaks
Leslie Hall - Blame The Booty (NSL's Bottom-Heavy Remix)
Mstrkrft ft John Legend - Heartbreaker
Murcof - Como Quisiera Decirte (Remix)
Passion Pit - Sleepyhead (Starsmith Remix ft Ellie Goulding)
Radiohead - Harry Patch (In Memory Of)
Ramesh B Weeratunga - Ring Of Fire
Streetlife DJs - Gunn Crime
The Tallest Man On Earth - A Field of Birds
tUnE-YaRdS - FIYA
Various Production - The World Is Gone ft Cat Power
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory - Everlasting Gobstopper
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