Sterminato Piano by Fabio Orsi

Fabio Orsi | Sterminato Piano Backwards (LP) Italian imprint Backwards is just releasing the latest from Berlin-based Fabio Orsi in a limited vinyl edition on bright orange wax. This is noteable, not just because of the Miami vibes coming off of the sumptious cover art, but moreso due to the unusual change in overall tonal values for the artist usually cloaked and shrouded in otherwise atmospheric obscured gray layers. Here he showcases an entire 360°. In just two tracks, each under 20 minutes, the artist I’ve known from previous efforts like Osci (2006, SmallVoices) or Stand Before Me, Oh My … Continue reading Sterminato Piano by Fabio Orsi

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A Trio of New Works for Piano: Orvin, Otte & Schmidt

3 REVIEWS/3 RECORDS: It demonstrates the versatility of both contemporary composition and the instrument in question, to arrive in the New Year with three very different, modern piano works up for review.  Although operating in different fields, and with different scopes and intentions, these three albums have been reviewed together, so as to showcase their relative strengths and diversity. Daniela Orvin | HomeSeasides on Postcards (CD/DL) First, is Daniela Orvin’s Home, a synth-washed, future-retro affair that owes no small debt to Vangelis’s score for Blade Runner.  It is a pleasant album that is minimal in nature without ever courting minimalism, … Continue reading A Trio of New Works for Piano: Orvin, Otte & Schmidt

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Verbal Brainwash and Other Works by Åke Hodell

Åke Hodell | Verbal Brainwash and Other Works Fylkingen Records (3xCD/DL) Åke Björnsson Hodell (1919-2000) was a Swedish poet, author, text-sound composer, and visual artist. He was also trained as fighter pilot, but after a crash during a practice flight (1941) and few years of hospitalization, he became a dedicated anti-militarist; something very apparent in his work, especially his earlier pieces. He began experimenting with what he called “elektronismer” (later “text-sound composition”), a blend of sound collage, spoken word, recorded radio plays and musique concrete, based on narratives and their electronic editing/process. His collaboration with the music department of Sveriges Radio … Continue reading Verbal Brainwash and Other Works by Åke Hodell

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~ by Elnath Project

Elnath Project | ~ Focused Silence (CD/DL) “Music cannot exist without sound.
 Sound exists by itself without music.
 Music evolves over time.
 The sound is timeless.
 It’s the sound that matters.
 Sound is strength.” – Giacinto Scelsi Elnath Project consists of trumpeter Alessandro Ciccarelli and his new record simply titled by the tilde symbol is a rare bird of sorts. On ~ he was inspired by the work of fellow Italian and surrealist-era composer Giacinto Scelsi (1905-1988). From the very top of DA22~ we are drawn into a foggy, drone saturated world that buzzes with an evaporating reverb. An all … Continue reading ~ by Elnath Project

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Be On Fire by Chrome Sparks

Chrome Sparks | Be On Fire Counter Records (DL/Stream) The new EP from Brooklyn’s Chrome Sparks (Jeremy Malvin) nicely crosses genres with ease, there are hints of abstraction, awkward beats, minimal techno, hip-hop with samples and effects galore. It’s a true pastiche of style that has ‘essence eau hipster’ written all over it – saturated in this rainbow blend of throwback soundtrack themes, fuzzy funk and slunken beats. In fact the mistaken identity of genre occurs near the start on In2 Your Love where a restrained pop soul vocal is muted over a trippy synth and fuzzbox, but at just … Continue reading Be On Fire by Chrome Sparks

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Hour Club by AJOG

AJOG | Hour Club self-released (DL) A journey of giraffes seem to be passing by, and we are listening to a gentle stampede. In this case, though, it’s Baltimore’s John Lane under the simplified moniker of AJOG and his self-released Hour Club – now up on Bandcamp. This is a rare bird (sorry to mix animalia metaphors) in terms of introductions, that is both wholly from leftfield, and also jam-packed, with a running time of around three hours! There are twenty-five tracks here, each just about seven minutes in length, ranging from ambient passages to soundtrack-style electronics – all poured slowly … Continue reading Hour Club by AJOG

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Toneshift Top Three (2018)

THE TONESHIFT TOP THREE: Though we managed to crank out more than four-hundred reviews in 2018, there were certain releases that broke the highest of expectations, or came in from left field here at Toneshift headquarters. Instead of another boring Top 10 list we decided to be extremely shrewd in our curation and pare down to those rare records that hit us in that sweet spot between the ears. All of our contributors, including our newest member, have offered their very Top Three choice recordings of 2018, and it turns out to be a truly diverse selection of unexpected earcandy. … Continue reading Toneshift Top Three (2018)

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