Review: UK institution Warp Records unleashes the new album by Brian Eno, The Ship, his first solo record since 2012's Grammy-nominated LUX. Eno cleverly implemented three dimensional recording techniques which were then formed in two, interconnected parts. The album, according to Warp themselves "is almost as much musical novel as traditional album. Eno brings together beautiful songs, minimalist ambience, physical electronics omniscient narratives and technical innovation into a single, cinematic suite". The result is one of Brian Eno's most innovative ventures yet and certainly begs your attention.
Review: Daniel Lapotin's recent rise has been remarkable. Further confirmation of his ascent to international IDM star status arrived via a round of recent interviews to promote Age Of, his 13th album, in which he expressed a desire to record soundtracks for Pixar movies and work with A-list R&B stars. Both of these disparate strands are explored on Age Of, alongside his love of fractured pop, intense and otherworldly electronica, and the kind of grainy, metal-influenced noise more often heard on the releases of one of the album's numerous guest musicians, Dominic Fenrow AKA Purient. One review described the set as bein like a "portfolio" and that's a fair comment; Age Of's greatest strength is the way that it shows off all sides of Lapotin's brilliant musical mind.
Review: Sean McCann presents the follow-up to 2013's incredible Music for Private Ensemble. His new one, Music for Public Ensemble, is released via his own Recital imprint and is composed of 16 tracks in collaboration with an impressive supporting cast of musicians such as Graham Lambkin, Ian William Craig, Rob Magill, Matthew Sullivan and Vancouver based modular synth explorer Sarah Davachi amongst many others. McCann himself states that: "Many of the pieces are text-based; reflections stemming from McCann's book Pacifics (R14). The narrative is meaningless or meaningful." Dep stuff indeed! Limited edition of 500 copies, which includes a 12-page booklet of texts, artwork, and program notes.
Review: This superb compilation from Peripheral Minimal aims to distill 35 years of French synthwave history into one essential package. Predictably, the label has done a superb job, largely by gathering together tracks unknown to all but the most obsessive collectors. Beginning with the pulsating rhythms and ghostly melodies of Philippe Laurent's 1982 jam "Rapsode 2", the album charts the development of the French synth sound in chronological order. There are naturally a handful of killer '80s cuts, alongside a lone cut from the '90s (the alien electronics and clicking drum machine hits of And' Crystall's brilliant "Bubbles of Memories") as well as a string of revivalist cuts from the twenty-teens that bring the story bang up to date.
Review: Texas club music icon Lotic continues Bjork's makeover on One Little Indian with another beautiful 12", cropped and packaged in a gorgeous silk-screened bag. Bjork's "Notget" had already been retuned by Lotic, but this time he returns to the turn with his Fromdeath version, jumping from solitary drones to broken shreds of power electronics, tribal drums and gun shots. It's a jagged, wayward affair for the more adventurous disc jockey, and one that will please both the floor shakers and the brain melters - this tune is only a shadow of its original self, and it comes as this week's top of the tips..!
Review: Aside from the visual spectacle that is Game Of Thrones, its mythical musical is what really shapes the atmosphere surrounding the series. Composed by Ramin Djawadi, the score to Season 4 is diverse and enchanting, made up of many different acoustic styles and genres. The second track, "The Rains Of Castamere", is even composed by Sigur Ros who give a seriously powerful performance as per usual. There's over twenty tracks spanning two tasty vinyl plates, filled to the brim with seductive strings, new age melodies and militant battle drums for that euphoric blockbuster hit! Stick it on and immerse yourself in a parallel world of mystical wars and fairytales.
Review: Music On Vinyl are our new best friends. With a wide range of music being reissued as of late, Yello's 1987 One Second is just spoiling us. Never being fully acclaimed when it was originally released, this is one album which really spans the full circle in terms of artistic ideas sonic experimentations. While being tagged primarily as a pop work, it's really more of a lesson in synth manipulations and nutty beat-making. "The Rhythm Divine" has to be out top track but do check the whole thing, it's magnificent...
Review: Japanese musical legend Ryuichi Sakamoto composes the soundtrack to Hollywood blockbuster The Revenant. Directed by Alejandro G. INarritu and starring Leonardo Di Caprio and Tom Hardy, the film earned three Golden Globes and five BAFTA awards. Sakamoto collaborates with The National's Bryce Dessner and German multidisciplinary artist Carsten Nicolai aka Alva Noto of Raster-Noton fame. This brooding yet breathtaking musical accompaniment is awe inspiring in all its grandeur, particularly the moments on which Alva Noto appears to provide his trademark synthesized string orchestra passages, complimented by his glitchy and clinical soundscapes ("Carrying Glass"/"Powaqa Rescue") They're so reminiscent of his legendary Xerrox series. Also features the Northwest Sinfonia (Seattle), Berlin orchestra s t a r g a z e and contributions from John Luther Adams and Eliane Radigue.