22 September 2008

Meso - Island Versus City

i made a realisation lately- the meaning and impact of music can dramatically change depending on the environment in which it is listened to. this realisation may seem self-evident, but i find that certain music really comes alive when listened to in the right surroundings.
Island Versus City by Meso is perfect music to listen to while walking through empty city streets at night. the subtle, contemplative ambient idm moods are strongly enhanced by an environment of deep shadows, distant sounds and glowing lights...

08 September 2008

Alexandre Navarro - 1001 EP

i had intended to feature some groove-oriented 'summer music' at some point, but the continued cold, overcast and rainy weather of this summer has kept me in the mood for quiet ambient music. and thankfully i have found a lot of great ambient music lately to share with you, my blog readers.
i recently discovered the 1001 EP by Alexandre Navarro on the experimental/noise/field recording netlabel Mandorla ('1001' can be found under audio releases/mandorla net label 006). most of the stuff i have found on Mandorla is a little bit too abstract and 'experimental' for my tastes, but having heard some of A. Navarro's work on the spacemusic podcast, and on the archipel netlabel, i was eager to listen.
the 1001 EP presents a carefully mixed sound collage of field recordings, processed textural noise, and slow motion synths, with very subtle minimal techno influences. long sound fields fade in and out, cascading notes float and spiral above, supported by a slow pulsing undertone. quiet, rainy music for an overcast afternoon, or a damp evening where fog hangs like a ghostly shroud and streetlights become luminous orbs...

05 September 2008

Northcape - Some Bright Valley

another treat for those who enjoyed the lush, delicate atmospheres of the last features: the Some Bright Valley ep by UK artist Northcape, put out by the monotonik netlabel. like a pleasant summer's walk through nature, a variety of sensations float through the air, stimulating your senses and relaxing your mind. a bed of long pad and string notes mixed with subtle environmental sounds is accented by almost organic-sounding synth leads, and held together by smooth basses and steady grooves. the short playing time is cause for repeated listening; drifting away on the sound, into a world of light filtered through leaves, gentle rain, and deep reflective pools.
the warmth of summer is not yet completely gone, and Northcape helps it to hold on a little longer...

01 September 2008

Planet Boelex & Lisa's Antenna - Little world

my vote for best netaudio release of this year goes to the first release from a humble new netlabel called soft phase: an ep entitled 'Little world' produced by none other than finnish artist planet boelex. last year, planet boelex released a brilliant extended ep called 'suunta' which i gushed about in an earlier post, also lauding it as the best release of that year. that release contained a collaboration with swedish vocalist Krister Linder, and this time, mr boelex works with another swedish singer/songwriter known as Lisa's Antenna. and he has outdone himself once again, creating exquisite, beautifully sequenced soundscapes around Lisa's lovely vocals and and minimal piano chords.
the usual planet boelex elements are here: infinitely reverberating pads, precisely filtered percussion and thick basses.. but planet b has scaled back the sequencing dramatically, providing a subtle, evocative backdrop for lisa's delicate vocals to soar over. truly good vocals and song writing are unfortunately rare in the world of netaudio, but this collaboration finds a rare gem in Lisa's entrancing songs. from time-suspending stillness, building to rapturous crescendos, and fading back into contemplative silence, this beautifully formed Little world provides the perfect peaceful refreshing escape from our own hectic and stressful world.