Essential listen for downtempo enthusiasts. Different artists cover wide range of styles.
Breathe Compilations is a (former?) Mexican netlabel that – surprise – specialises in releasing compilations, active between 2008 and 2018 (as of 2020). Although the label’s back catalogue (92 releases) has not seen an addition for almost 2 years, its Soundcloud profile buzzes with activity. So I don’t fully call off any hope for a comeback. But in the meantime, I could as well review one of its earliest releases:
Continue reading “Various Artists –  Breathe 02”
Essential live recording of an essential classic. Quiet listening conditions apply 😉
For us free music enthusiasts, orchestral works are naturally hard to come by. Musicians deserve to earn a living, which is why professional recordings typically don’t come free. But then there are these lucky exceptions, like this concert, well preserved for us collectors, so that we can enjoy an (almost, NC-ND…) libre recording of one of the most well known classical themes of all time.
Continue reading “University of Chicago Symphony Orchestra –  Also Sprach Zarathustra”
Extremely experimental theatre / sound art / pop music album by a Dutch theatre outfit.
I spun the time wheel heavily for this review, looking how far back the netlabel era would carry me. 1996 is the first year for which noticed output on the Internet Archive, my fishing grounds. Look what colourful specimen I caught us here! It features everything from synth rock over quirky, genre-defying instrumentals to pure spoken word tracks. Probably not your usual musical diet.
Continue reading “Banabila, Grem, Cramer –  Lieber Gorilla : Visionen”
Exceptional chiptune compilation for Platine Festival in Cologne. Great contributions from well-known artists.
If you want to saviour a varied selection of different classic 8-bit as well as modern interpretations of the genre, look no further. From classic pure console sounds to blends of chip and studio music you can feel served. I can fully recommend each of the 10 tracks, yet will only showcase you the habitual two here:
Continue reading “Various Artists –  BACKUP11”
Old swing samples meet instrumental hip hop loops. Both casually and dancually enjoyable.
Back in 2013, Belgian (surprise!) producer Boogie Belgique published Vol. 1 of this series (ojdo reported). Only one year later, this gem followed. Time for me to follow up: like before, modern percussion arrangements are woven together with vintage recordings, carefully curated, sliced and spliced to create a tasty blend that could be described as instrumental hip hop. But this is only half true. Listen to hear for yourself:
Continue reading “Boogie Belgique –  Nightwalker (Vol. 2)”
Short like an EP, full like a compilation. Uplifting ambient electronica at its best.
A short album, but varied like a compilation: 6 tracks, 3 of which are compilations, and 2 remixes make this a small festival in all things ambient electronica.
Continue reading “Planet Boelex –  Exist”
It marked the end of a three year hiatus. And what a bombastic, I mean, relaxing, way to do that. If you have not yet Planet Boelex on your mental shortlist for acoustic bubble baths, here is your ticket:
Essential ambient drone music. Literally takes its time.
Take your time. Got it? Then take some more. This album is the slowest of slow music. Even among drone, which is the genre, it is one of the slower entries. Single, long-stretched notes fade in and out for literally minutes. In a sense, this soundscape realises what trance music promises. Low volume and background listening are crucial for enjoyment…
Continue reading “Saito Koji –  Time / Line”
Extremely shoe-gazy, ambient progressive or even post rock. Percussion only starts for the finale. Amazement during the intro.
Knoxband is the ambient post rock project by artist Vru Patel, whose albums always incorporate airy, vast, even stellar soundscapes. While this review highlights the start of this musical journey, give the appropriately named Solstice a try to see where his sound landed three years later. But first, have the appetizers:
Continue reading “Knoxband –  Equinox”
Industrial synth-wave dubstep from Belarus. Fans of The Prodigy please step closer. And start dancing.
Except for The Prodigy, it took me some tracks to recall the other association my memory was hesitant to draw, but then it clicked: the first instalments of the Command & Conquer realtime strategy games back in the 90’s had a similar, uncompromising metallic sound. Thoroughly danceable and yet highly cinematic, this would make for great party backdrop on a thematic dance night.
Continue reading “Fla Vector –  RED”
Calm and deliberate electronica backdrop. Not fighting for your attention, earning it just the more for it.
Not much has been written online about this nice & short EP. All tracks feature their own catchy main theme, which then develops into about five minutes of slightly derivative pleasant background music. There are no excited guitar solos, dramatic bass drops or seductive vocals. Just plain, good, honest electronica straight from the producer.
Continue reading “Klangwald –  Tolerance & Courage EP”