number 818
week 6


Vital Weekly, the webcast: we offering a weekly webcast, freely to download. This can be regarded as the audio-supplement to Vital Weekly. Presented as a radioprogramm with excerpts of just some of the CDs (no vinyl or MP3) reviewed. It will remain on the site for a limited period (most likely 2-4 weeks). Download the file to your MP3 player and enjoy!
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KUTIN - IVORY (CD by Valeot) *
ANLA COURTIS – THE TORRID (CD by Porter Records)
M.B. & ICS - VIR-US (CD by Farmacia 901) *
L (CD compilation by Zelphabet)
MARC BEHRENS - 20 ZONEN (CD by Auf Abwegen) *
REPLACE (CD by Auf Abwegen/Degem)
FRANCISCO LOPEZ - UNTITLED #205 (10" by Auf Abwegen)
ZBEEN - K-FRAME (CDR by Ripples Recordings) *
ISABELASNACHO - INVENTO (CDR by Luscinia Discos) *
SONOREFICTION - MIRAGES (CDR by Luscinia Discos) *
ERIC CORDIER - LA CITE DU BRUIT (3"CDR by Universinternational) *
FREIBAND - AT HOME AT LAST (cassette by Beam Ends) *
CHEFKIRK / SOMNAPHON - TENDER PINK MOVEMENTS (cassette by Bicephalic Records)
LE PARFUM DE JEAN (2 cassettes by 3Patttes)

KUTIN - IVORY (CD by Valeot)
Before starting to use his own name, Attilo Novellino used Un Vortice Di Bassa Pressione, which is not an easy name to remember, so perhaps he choose his birth name to go by. Novellino is also a member of Sentimental Machines. He has had a release on Inglorious Ocean and will have one soon on Small Doses. His 'Through Glass' album has ten tracks, which use extensively guitars, bass, field recordings and piano. Ambient might be the right word, but its not always that soft, such as in the shoegazing opening of 'A Footpath For Night Dancers', which is quite loud and mildly distorted. Not so much my cup, but I enjoyed occasional distortion like that since its a bit different than many others working in this crowded field of drones. Novellino plays with various cards on the table, going from softer moods to grittier ones and that's quite nice. He has obviously thought about the whole notion of ambient and drone music, and seems to me interested in finding his own voice in that. I must say that he succeeded as such. The whole noisiness of distortion pedals full on, is perhaps less interesting for me, but I certainly can see connections to Tim Hecker or Andreas Tilliander. Promising newcomer, I'd say.
Peter Kutin is also new, in as far that i didn't hear his solo music before, but I did hear two of the releases he did with the band Dirac (see Vital Weekly 708 and 729), a band that plays everything in one way, and which uses guitars, laptop and percussion. That's a method that Kutin also applies in his solo work, and 'Ivory' is his third solo album. The guitar is the primary instrument, 'real time transformed on Peter Kutin's laptop', with the exception of some tracks that have a violin, a korg synthesizer and a double bass. Much of this music was made while working on soundtracks for old silent music from the Austrian film archive. That wasn't easy to hear in these seven pieces, but its surely nice enough. Unlike Novellino, Kutin stays closer to home with his ambient/drone music, taking no consideration for a new development. Also literally he stays closer to home as a strong Fennesz influence can be detected in his music. That perhaps makes the music a bit too much like a copy of what we already know, but Kutin's music is surely fine enough to be fully interesting. Moody, atmospheric yet also with enough sense of experiment and a fine ear for experiment and thoughtful composition. Not entirely new, but quite nice. (FdW)
Address: http://www.valeot.com

The starting point of this is quite interesting. Before electricity arrived there we were other forms of technology to communicate. Look at the architecture of churches or amphitheaters, and you can see how clever they are to resonate a message. This sound work deals with that notion: the travel of air waves through space. In the St. Pierre Cathedral in Poitiers the church organ is used, as well as white noise generator opposite (some 75 meters away) of it and microphones are used to pick those sounds moving through the cathedral. Each piece here, four in total, deals with a specific quality of the relation sound and architecture. Although I am not sure if I can fully understand the exact nature of this process, I think this is a wonderful work. It opens with 'SAA1: Air Volume', which sounds like shifting heavy objects through a heavy reverberant space, some close by and some far away. Like testing the space. In the other pieces the mood is less heavy, or better in 'SAA2: For Standing Waves' is sheer quietness, occasionally interrupted by louder sounds and occasional long form sine wave like sounds. Here 'far away' comes more in play. In 'SAA3: For Standing Waves, Disturbances', organ and sine waves move about, indeed in a somewhat more disturbing way, pleasantly forceful, which continues in the final piece. I am not sure if I learned more about the spatial quality of this particular cathedral, but I do know I heard a more than excellent CD. (FdW)
Address: http://www.circum-disc.com

Not easy to admit, but I never been a big fan of Belgium Hybryds. I am not sure why. Probably I forgot why, since it has been quite a while since I last heard their music, but their tribal techno industrial music never did much for me. Maybe it was the connection they made with anything 'ritual' to which I developed an allergy. I do remember however their 'Soundtrack For The Antwerp Zoo Aquarium', which was released by Daft Records in 1995, which was already partly released before in 1993 on a split CD with Vidna Obmana. Its a work that indeed deserved a re-issue. Hybryds, a trio from Antwerp, did a bunch of sound recordings at the Aquarium of the zoo in Antwerp of animals, but also of the surroundings and added a whole bunch of human voices, seashells, rainmaker, didgeridoo, percussion objects, saxophone, Yamaha DX7, sampler and cello, along with a whole bunch of effects. No tribal, ethnic, techno or industrial influences here, just ambient music, recorded at a time when ethnic instruments were in play - think Steve Roach in the mid nineties, or John C. Lilly's album on Silent which made use of dolphin sounds in a similar way. The whole album has this great mid nineties ambient feel to it; music that was connected to the world of ambient house, but here it never gets even remotely close to dance music. I do remember this back then, and thinking it was a good CD and these days I think its a very good album, and, as said, an excellent one to be re-issued. For anybody who loves this classic period of ambient music, and perhaps anything that came after that.
I never heard of Maciek Szymczuk or Slowtion. Behind the latter is Julian Coope who plays guitar here, while one Joanna Kustwan-Szymczuk takes occasional care of vocals. Her husband Maciek takes care of 'everything else' as the cover says. Zoharum informs us that this work is slightly different from Szymczuk's other work, but of course I couldn't tell. Its not easy to say what this release wants to achieve. Throughout the music is quite dark and moody, with lots of ambience, but there is certainly also an element which we could loosely call 'pop music' here. Rhythms are created from crackles, but with a nice bass sound at least, and the guitar is more fuzzy shoegazing like, but very much pushed to the background, and some mild playing on top. Joanna's voice is not there in every track but when it comes it has that wordless trip hop like chanting, rather than a delivery of some fine poetry (and when it does its covered with so many effects we don't actually here it). But its only in the last track that we are confronted with what I would call a song as such. Up to that they were more sketches of songs than actual songs. But I don't know if I think that is a real pity, as I quite enjoyed the whole sparseness like attempts at moody pop related tunes and I thought it gave all of it a quality of its own. From there it go either full out (more or less, give or take) pop like, or more ambient, but I hope it would continue to walk this balance in this land in between for now. (FdW)
Address: http://www.zoharum.com

Back in Vital Weekly 434 a 7" by Herbst9 on Drone Records was reviewed, but not by me. A side project called Land:Fire found its way in Vital Weekly 713. But this double CD may serve as my proper introduction to the music of Herbst9. By looking at the package I would doubt this is my kind of music. Lots of fantasy like images are to be found in the booklet, apparently from the old civilizations of Sumer and Akkad, where the first written pieces come from and the music deals with that ancient culture, their rituals, their gods and demons, war and peace and all that. Although all of that is not really my cup of tea, I thought the music was pretty interesting, although hardly original in approach. Lots of percussive banging, ritualisk obviously, whispering voices moody and dark, all drenched in a healthy (most of the times) and unhealthy (at other times) amount of reverb. But also with unsettling synth tones, lush long form drones and dark ambience is never far away. At times I am reminded of the old Hybryds sound (not from the release reviewed elsewhere), and when things become too clearly magick and ritualisk I loose my interest, but throughout these two hours I thought there was some very fine moments of dark ambient music. I am not sure if I would play such a thing easily again, especially for those pieces that I didn't like, but I can easily weed out those and still have a fine hour left. (FdW)
Address: http://www.loki-found.de

ANLA COURTIS – THE TORRID (CD by Porter Records)
Two very different releases by Porter Records. Argentinian Courtis (Reynols) worked with a diversity of artists in the past. ‘The Torrid’ is an illustration of this, as it contains varied recordings – live and studio – of very different collaborations.  Joseph Hammer, Rick Potts, WL, Bill Horist, MSBR, KK Null, v?VM, ARMPIT, Daniel Menche and Campbell Kneale are his partners in crime here. In eight duo and trio line ups Courtis  creates interesting soundscapes.  Some tend more to pure noise, other pieces are near to ambient.  ‘A-Garden’ the closing piece with Campbell Kneale is close to ambient drones with their cicadas-like noises.  Ambient-like is a lso ‘Harmfull Rainstorm’, in a duo with Daniel Menche. It  is made up of remixes of recorded sound of rain. It starts more or less with natural rain, but remix procedures let it grow into a multilayered and noisy monster. With Bill Horist Courtis builds a guitar-dominated ambiance. At the other side of the spectrum we find Courtis in company with MSBR and KK Null in an exercise of power electronics. Together with ‘LA Noodles’ with Hammer and Potts, ‘Stone Runs’ with RLW is one of the most satisfying pieces from this collection. Here we meet more subtle and multidimensional sound work that is not moving in just one direction like in many of the other pieces. Altogether a nice souvenir from the past.
Maroney is a New York-based pianist and composer inspired by Cage, Coleman, Cowell a.o. He plays what he calls ‘hyperpiano’, a piano with extended tools like the prepared piano of John Cage.  Maroney plays on about 27 CDs. I don’t know any of them, but I’m sure ‘Double Zero’ offers a  very good introduction to his music. It is a solo performance of nine uninterrupted  movements. And a  what  trip it is! The first part is rhythm-based, and easily associated with the piano. However, further on, like in part 8 the piano would not come in my mind, if I did not know it. In the second part a melody passes by, played more or less conventional on the piano. But at the same Maroney generates never heard  textures from his prepared piano. The third section has strange glissandi. And so we go from one to another surprise. The strange sounds coming from the piano dominate and make a strong contrast with the normal piano sounds. Equally different  are the ways of playing (with) the piano. The traditional way opposed to a diversity of other techniques to generate  unheard sounds. Often one has the impression more musicians are at work, as if he has a small ensemble at his disposal. But that is not the case. It is all done by Maroney in a performance at the Roulette in 2008. But that is not what makes this one special in the end. It is the enormous depth in the sounds and textures he is able to evoke, the rich timbres, the range of dynamics, all embodied in a inspired musical vision, that made a strong impression  on me. Beautifully recorded. So absolutely an extraordinary release. (DM)
Address: http://www.porterrecords.com

M.B. & ICS - VIR-US (CD by Farmacia 901)
Another work in the vast catalogue of works by Maurizio Bianchi, here a collaboration with Andrea Ferraris, also known as ICS. The majority of the field recordings used here were made inside the Jewish cemetery of of Alessandria, along with an improvisation held with Luca Mauri and Luca Sigurta, a sample from Ur. The whole thing deals with the encounter of the philosophy of Job (I assume the 'me' on the cover is Bianchi writing). Is it because I know it uses cemetery recordings, or is that really ghostly voices humming around? Its obviously not easy to say, simply because I already know. I don't know ICS that well as I do know the music of Bianchi, but it seems to me the latter has had a lot to say in this. The seven lengthy pieces of music are quite dark, but at times also pretty noise like, with distortion underneath. I might of course be entirely wrong, but at times it seems like they use a lot of guitars in this music, although there is no such mention on the cover. I am not well aware of the dealings of Job, but I do know he was tested a lot by God, and this music is certainly the perfect soundtrack for such an ordeal. There is no light in the black picture of sound. Fine sturdy ambient industrial in true play here. Fans of Maurizio Bianchi will not be disappointed, unless you were looking for an altogether new outlook on music. Somehow I don't think that will happen. But perhaps that is not necessary. (FdW)
Address: http://www.farmacia901.com

L (CD compilation by Zelphabet)
After a somewhat long hiatus, the alphabet of noise of continues with the letter 'L', and as before we have people whose name start with that letter, so Lasse Marhaug, Lee Gamble, Leticia Castaneda and Lionel Marchetti are here, along with Leather Bath and The Legendary Pink Dots. It might also be the first one with six pieces. The CD opens with a pretty interesting piece by Marhaug of electro-acoustic sounds at the start, but getting quite noisy as the piece progresses, but is not as noisy as Leather Bath, with its metallic rumble and distorted electronics. Quite classic in their approach of noise, but I prefer the more thought out mayhem of Marhaug.
Lee Gamble's piece is one of analogue electronics, modular synthesizer bubbling away, until they get locked in some sort of rhythm, but the end is getting derailed with a bit of noise. The odd ball is of course the presence of The Legendary Pink Dots, which might be an odd thing for this series dealing with the extended idea of noise, but their piece is an excellent different take of noise. More electronic than in the usual studio work, but as always with Edward Ka-spel's poetry firmly on top. No presence, it seems, of extended guitar sounds.
Leticia Castaneda also has a piece of analogue synthesizers, which is constructed in a rather odd way, breaking down at times, moving swiftly to something else. Like Lee Gamble's piece this all sounds a bit improvised to tape, with minor edits. In Castaneda's piece it seems to be various pieces from a similar improvisation on modular synthesizers stuck together. Marchetti delivers the longest piece here, clocking at fifteen minutes. His approach here is to work with sounds from instruments, piano mostly, treated in an electronic way. There is also the crackling of fire creeping in, like the piano is on fire and a the sound of a dog. No rapid montage techniques here, but an eerie and moody piece. An excellent piece by all accounts. Five great pieces, one that I thought was of lesser interest - great compilation.(FdW)
Address: http://www.zelphabet.com

MARC BEHRENS - 20 ZONEN (CD by Auf Abwegen)
REPLACE (CD by Auf Abwegen/Degem)
FRANCISCO LOPEZ - UNTITLED #205 (10" by Auf Abwegen)
Having played on six continents, recording fields in China and the Amazon rainforest, Marc Behrens keeps things close to home on his '20 Zonen' release. By invitation of Germany's hr2-kultur radio show he pays homage here to the city where he was born, Darmstadt (in Germany obviously) and especially in the area called Kranichstein. The forty minute work is divided in twenty zones (hence the title), not equally but what is needed. These zones are put behind one and other with small cross fades and as one piece on this CD. The cover lists, luckily, every single bit which is nice. So we have anything from a brass band to churches, parks, a local pond, aircraft noise, train announcements, which may seem like this is a demonstration record by the local tourist office, but the recording, selection and chronology of these sounds, can stand very well as an electro-acoustic composition - if perhaps somewhat loosely organized at times and a bit sparse. If you don't know Darmstadt, just as I don't, this will perhaps a very much the audio portrait of any civilized city with perhaps not a lot of human activity, but it sounds great with lots of detail. Behrens must have some fine microphones at his disposal.
Auf Abwegen now also hosts Degem, a label which annually releases compilations of the German Association For Electroacoustic Music, and every year along a topic. This year (more like last year actually) the theme was 'Replace' and here we have fourteen German composers delivering music around that theme. 'Replace' is one of the few English words on the CD, as the booklet is all (except for the general introduction) in German, making it less appealing to foreign customers, I should think who would like to know. Curated by Marc Behrens, we come across some people we know like Nicolas Wiese, Sam Auginer and Sciss, but many of the names are new to me: Denise Ritter, Matthias Ockert, Marcus Beuter, Nikolaus Heyduck, Sam Auinger, Bernd Leukert, Jacob Hofmann, Frank Niehusmann, Michael Harenberg, Kirsten Reese, Ludger Kisters and <SA/JO>. It deals with replacing from a political point of view, with sounds from Arab Spring in Wiese's pieces, but also the transition of birds (Heyduck) and water (Auinger) or on altogether on a more abstract level with samples replacing the original, which goes for various of the pieces herein enclosed. Its a fine sampler in which you may discover some new names, all producing work of fine quality, but without many standout pieces.
The 10" format is not a rare thing, although we don't see them as often as 12" or 7", but of course they resemble the old 78 rpm records, and since those are usually very old it means that they also produce a lot of crackles and static hiss, and those are like wax (pun intended) in the hands of Francisco Lopez. He has of course lots of CD releases, but his vinyl records (I counted five 7"s, and 2 LPs, but surely there is more) deal usually with the sound of vinyl itself. Here on this 78 rpm shaped piece of vinyl he has quite a loud manifestation of hiss crackle and bop, exploring old vinyl. Lopez himself is the first to admit that its 'more a tool than a final product, noise and rhythm with a hopeful perspective'. This wax is also a toy for DJs, not just the loud 18 minutes of the a-side but also the twenty lock grooves on the b-side, which, technically speaking you could use to re-create the a-side. 'Tool' records like this, not just for DJs, but also for other (lazy?) people who don't like to record their own material is not something new (think RRR-100, RRR-500, the various ERS records with lock grooves), but this fine tool allows you to be your own Lopez for a while. (FdW)
Address: http://www.aufabwegen.com

Anne-James Chaton is a poet from France and his cooperation with Andy Moor goes back to 2005. Chaton and The Ex, in which Andy Moor is one of the guitarists, created the book and CD 'In the event.' I was directly fallen in love of the beautiful voice and staccato rhythms of Chaton. Transfer/3 is the third release in a serial of seven inch singles about traveling. The first two singles deal about departure and cars. This single is about airplanes. Side A is a sinister piece of music full of voices of pilots and air traffic controllers which are recorded in the black box of crashed airplanes. Chaton reads dates of fatal plane crashes and Moor added some minimal guitar tones to make the soundscape complete. Side B opens with a open almost happy sound and leads to a rhythmic guitar composition with looped abstract guitar sounds. Sometimes it sounds like drums, but it is just strings and guitar what creates the sound. Chaton declaims the arranged text 'Carnet sul volo' of Leonardo Da Vinci. 'Carnet sul volo' describes different types of aerodynamic movements. This release about traveling by plane is brilliant, the excitement about being in the air and flying as a bird and the nervousness when everything goes wrong and fear becomes reality. Highly recommended! (JKH)
Address: http://www.unsounds.com

Erik Kessel is the man behind Caaldruun, and I am sure I haven't heard from him him before. His discography only lists a few releases, and information is sparse: "CAALDRUUN: hypnotic Ambient/Industrial compositions utilizing concrete sonic residue sourced from field recordings, oscillators and other electronic devices." No question in arguing that. It is what it is. Eight pieces here on 'Headstone' and I think it sounds indeed like a cross-over between ambient music and something is perhaps not entirely industrial, but at least has a raw edge to it, spliced out over field recordings and electronics alike. Some tracks are more alike field recording piece, such as 'Longwalks', and other more electronics, which crackling transmissions from dying radio receivers, deep bass hum oscillators and high end frequencies, but, as said, never leaping in downright harsh walls of noise. While I didn't hear something that I haven't before, I thought it was a great release. Excellent selection of sounds, minimal yet never boring, dynamic production and a fine ear for composition, always to spot, never too long. The presentation looks good, but could be better. This guy deserves to get heard. (FdW)
Address: http://www.tothefoxden.com

ZBEEN - K-FRAME (CDR by Ripples Recordings)
A duo of Ripples label boss Ennio Mazzon (programming, signal processing, field recordings) and Gianluca Favaron (microphones, field recordings, loops, electronics), who work with a continuously rotating sounds based on loops culled from static sounds, acoustic sounds and electronics. Five pieces in total, just over twenty three minutes, which doesn't make it too easy to pin this down. There is a certain density about these recordings which I liked. Sounds keep popping up, play around for a while and then disappear, but pieces never collapse when things are removed. It has some fine textures here, moody and microscopic, filling out my space quite nicely. Maybe it has to do with the mastering of the CD (by Giuseppe Ielasi) that brought out more of the music, but it has a great vibrancy and liveliness to it. I wish it was all a bit longer with two or three more tracks. Very nice one, one of the best which involves Mazzon. (FdW)
Address: http://www.ripplesrecordings.web.com

A double compilation pack of recordings made at Radio Gagarin Live Concerts series at FSK 93.00 mhz. The show is bi-weekly (although not always with live in studio concerts, I should think) and put together by Jetzmann, Asmus Tietchens and TBC. The latter is also responsible for the release on his own label Wachsender Prozess with five lengthy pieces all recorded in 2008. Quite a mixed bag, these five pieces. It opens with a twenty-three minute piece by Hati, from Poland. They are perhaps best known as a percussion group of ethnic percussion and a love for metal sheets. Their piece is quite nice, in a sort of interesting straight forward nearly acoustic sort of way. Its is followed by a collaborative piece of Hati and Renoise, of whom I never heard. It seems to be that Renoise feeds all the percussive sounds into a bunch of analogue synthesizers to alter the sounds in a more noisy way. Not bad, but not the greatest either. TBC closes the proceedings on the first disc with a very loud and dirty noise track, but one that doesn't much for me.
The second disc start out with the computer noise of Kakawaka from Germany. Large blocks of noise, cut to a halt sometimes and then starting up in a different version. This start-stop version of noise is not often explored and that's a pity. What these twenty-one minutes proof that just that idea is not enough to create a fine composition. At a certain point one thinks, so what? Almost twice as long is the piece by Japanese Astro, who use analogue synthesizers and loads of effects to create that typical wall of noise with a psychedelic edge that Astro is well-known for. Something, on both accounts for those who love noise, which includes me if it was for ten minutes of both. With a bit of more editing this could all have fitted on one disc, I should think. (FdW)
Address: <wp666@gmx.de>

A new name for me, Peter Prautzch, who seems to be in the loop: guesting on his second CD comes from people like Marc Weiser (Rechenzentrum), Vladislav Delay (on drums) and Masayoshi Fujita, also known as El Fog, on vibraphone. The title translates as 'heavy sea' and its strange mixture of field recordings, samples from classical music, electronics and ambient music. Well, perhaps not so strange when you read this, but the music is kinda strange. Heavily based on drones and drama, especially in the use of classical music. Music with a high level of soundtrack material, especially when there are bits of dialogues to be spotted, but which perhaps also is not always very coherent in execution. Dark throughout, with field recordings either not playing an important role, or firmly pushed away through various forms of procession, this is both melancholic and dramatic in approach. Its not bad, I think, but not great either. Good solid ambient music, smoothly recorded, dark, but which could be 'composed' more, in order to make a less random impression. Perhaps that defines film music: great when you get a bunch of images but perhaps failing as music as such. (FdW)
Address: http://www.neoouija.com

Willie B is the drummer for Johnny Dowd and Jamie Lidell, but in Tzar he has his own group, a duo in fact of B playing bass pedals, drums and electronics and Michael Stark on organs and synths. A strange release indeed, certainly for Vital's standards. Drum and synth duo's are not a rare thing, think Suicide, Sogar & Swing, Silver Apples and if Tzar is anything to be compared with than it would be Suicide sans vocals. Quite loud, with a direct in your face recording, this duo takes also their inspiration from the world of psychedelic music, improvisations and dub. I can imagine some of these tracks being reworked by dub producers. Sometimes they plays a more moody song ('The Mooring' or 'Men In White Aprons'), but the other five are heavy upbeat affairs, with loud banging drums and lots of nonconsecutive sounds on the organ. Very free play at work here, no-wave like, and something that I liked a lot. Strange perhaps to the world of Vital Weekly, but perhaps it also fits in perfectly. Having an open mind about music is all that matters in these pages. (FdW)
Address: http://www.williebmusic.net

A group improvisation of three guys on their laptops and one playing accordion. The latter is provided by Jonas Kocher, the other three are D'Incise, Ludger Hennig and Sciss. I only know the (solo) work of D'Incise and Kocher. In May last year, this quartet played in Leipzig and the results are to be found on this CDR. Its obviously a work of improvisation, but as usual when people from the world of electronics start improvising, it hardly sounds like improvisation, so I guess that's a good thing (if improvisation as such is not really your thing). These people on their laptops play sustaining sounds, producing sine wave like sounds, loops of crackles, processed field recordings and who knows what else. Kocher, the only man with a 'real' instruments, plays his squeezebox in very much a similar fashion. The accordion is a perfect instrument for that end. It can also produce sound that is sustaining yet it retains also a specific acoustic quality, as Kocher is using acoustic objects on his instrument to produce extra sounds. Sometimes this almost gets lost in the pieces - four in total - and a true fusion takes place. You could argue wether you would need three laptops to do this and if perhaps an additional other electronic instrument would not have been a bad idea - say an analogue synthesizer - but the results are indeed very nice.
The other new release on Insubordinations is a remix compilation. Another one? Well, yes and no. Yes, this seven piece album are all remixes, but it takes the seven pieces from an album 'Complaints De Maree Basse' by Diatribes and Abdul Moimeme, which I think I haven't heard, but its a nice idea to get a remix done for one album, track by track. Its of course is a pity that I didn't hear the original since it makes it hard to compare with the remixes. So we could also safely say that this is 'just' another compilation. Here we have Blindheao, Nicolas Bernier, Honore Feraille, Ludger Hennig, Mokuhen, Francisco Lopez and Herzog doing the honors. Ranging from heavy laptop processing (Blindhead, Lopez, Herzog) in which the original is probably entirely removed, to those who use more clearly sounds of the original (Bernier's take on the drum sounds, Mokuhen on scraping metallic sounds). Also if you don't know the original, then it is a fine compilation. Without big surprises, but with a fine quality overall. (FdW)
Address: http://www.insubordinations.net

A label from Spain which I never heard of, all with artists I never heard of. The first disc is a collaboration between Leo Alves Vieira and Pangea. The first is from Brazil and plays clarinet, flute, acoustic guitar and electroacoustic. Pangea is Juan Antonio Nieto from Madrid and he plays 'sounds, treatments'. Improvised music, but it makes also use of a pre-recorded string quartet by Vieira in 'Sleep Deprivation', ultimately taking over the piece. The music has more of this pre-recorded classical music, which, at least or so I think, is being transformed by Pangea. Over these textures, Vieira plays his instruments and does that in a way that its not plink-plonk like, but actually fills in when and where needed. It delivers some interesting tense pieces of music, which is sort of half way through improvisation, modern classical music and cinema like pieces. Very nice and with some thirty-five minutes the right length to leave the listener curious for me.
Stranger is the release by Sebastian Wesman, who is originally from Argentina but now based in Tallinn and who works as Isableasnacho. He sings in a language of his own invention to which he adds music lifted from a variety of sound sources, vinyl and radio mainly. I wouldn't have believed that, since it sounds very coherent, more like him actually playing guitar, percussion and occasional violin. Actually he does that. This all sounds more like folk music of a foreign, as yet to be discovered land and occasional sounds mediaeval. Its not the kind of music I hear a lot, and likewise I am not able to say much about it. But there is surely something very fascinating about it. The whole 'is it real or is it fake, and just what the hell is it?' axis comes in play here, and I guess that's a good thing. Music should sometimes raise questions like that. Although it doesn't sound like it, I was reminded of Domnique Petitgand.
Whereas with some thought you could think the previous are linked, Sonorefiction from Lille is something different. They already had some releases on net labels and 'Mirages' is their first physical release. Its total electronic music and the first few pieces here reminded me of the classic Chain Reaction sound. Bouncing rhythms from machines, feeding through echo and delay machines with not strict dance music but its never far away. That's not the tone for the entire release however, since there is also pieces that are more ambient like including spacious synthesizers and field recordings of running water. Then is that curious piece of lounge music in 'Silver Lagoon' (their titles give away something, there is also 'Silent Watering'…). I thought this was a great release, highly varied (and that is what makes it original) electronic music of great quality. Whereas the other two were good, but perhaps not easily finding their way to the player again, I played this three times in a row while doing the accounting for last year. I wonder why nobody's ever heard of them? Surely there are adventurous labels out there who like a new name to dance-like tunes?
An odd label, three nice releases, fine presentation. A label to keep an eye out for. (FdW)
Address: http://luscinia.ruidemos.org

More privately released music by Stuart Chalmers - see also Vital Weekly 758 and 764. His packaging is something that lots of room for improvement. Just a small sticker with artist name and title is not really enough, I should think. Chalmers has a background in improvised music in various groups such as Cube Orchestra, but also uses computers. He too does improvisation on this solo release, in which he uses a cassette player, cassettes, effect pedals, circuit bent keyboards and a looper pedal. Culled from various hours of recordings, which were edited on the computer. Some pieces were not edited at all, and some to quite some extent. Four pieces of some length, totaling up to forty-one minutes. When Chalmers reaches for noise, which apparently he likes to do, it gets a bit pointless. It then rambles on and on, such as in the first movement. However in the fourth (and longest) piece he takes matter under control and plays us a piece of music that has a nice radiophonic quality to it. Through a clever built up that takes more than half the piece he creates a fine mood, and then arrives at noise, and that takes up some minutes. In the two pieces in the middle, he works more around collage like techniques, with skipping around through a rather vast set of sounds, but perhaps it could have benefitted from some more editing in some places. But throughout this mixture of noise, musique concrete, ambient and radiophonica is quite nice. Maybe Chalmers should be on the search for a real label? (FdW)
Address: <skarabee@live.co.uk>

ERIC CORDIER - LA CITE DU BRUIT (3"CDR by Universinternational)
Already around for twenty years, Eric Cordier deals with a lot of things: electro-acoustic music,improvised music, instrumental music and field recordings. On 'La Cite Du Bruit' its the latter. It has sounds from fighter-bomber planes confronting with  'the regular nature of of iterative sound phenomenons, such as the charging/discharging of electrons inside the condensers of a microphone, or the steady or quickening of aquatic insects'. Cordier made recordings at an air show in Bourget and insects in the Bois de Vincennes. As I writing this - true story - planes head over my house too. Strange. In this almost twenty minute piece we hear those planes too flying over in what seems to me irregular intervals, with those little chirping insects in quite a more regular fashion. Quite an interesting piece, certainly when you play this loud - and certainly you need to in the first few minutes, but then it will bring out these massive loud qualities of airplane sounds in the second half of the piece. An excellent piece, and one with, at least I assume, a political dimension. (FdW)
Address: http://ui.universinternational.org

Basically a duo work, I'd say, but also a work in two parts, cut together into one piece. Both of them last around 9-10 minutes and both start out 'loud' and move away over the course of the section. Both of these guys are renown for their work in electronics in combination with field recordings, or vice versa of course. The title translates as 'underground drainage', and it seems like the microphone was stuck firmly under ground to obscure whatever sonic information could be retrieved. When things get quiet here, they are use quiet, that is of course, until the second piece start. Then the dirt is flying around, debris everywhere and slowly this is getting lower and lower. Various electronic treatments have been applied, mainly (I think) in the area of equalization. Its quite an intense piece of listening, as a lot of it is not easy to detect. Like with many of this kind of music a thoroughly fine piece, but nothing new etc. You know the drill. (FdW)
Address: http://www.siridisc.co.uk

FREIBAND - AT HOME AT LAST (cassette by Beam Ends)
Beam Ends is a label of Freek Kinkelaar, the Beequeen partner of Frans de Waard. Freek asked his partner to release a cassette and gave him unreleased Freiband pieces. Freek choose six pieces and the cassette "At home at last" is born. The pieces have been composed for several occasions like compilation projects, radio-broadcasts or remixes of old Kapotte Muziek music. The pieces last a period from 2001 - 2008. The tape starts with a never published one minute track with re-edited Kapotte Muziek recordings. A lot of music changes are happening in just one minute. "Well" is the second recording which was created for Brunnen a project of Freek Kinkelaar. Great ambient track, almost silence. "BCN" stands for bacon and means spek in Dutch and was created for "Spekk's Small Melodies" compilation. Songs of baking are used as well. The last track on side A is called Unter den Linden, created in 2001. The music is a remix project by a band of the same. The project is never completed, but the track is a dark thrilling sound with some fine melodies at the background.  Tilos is a very interesting composition and has been recorded live at radio station Tilos in Budapest. The piece includes some Joy Division and New Order samples, but they are hardly to discover. The atmosphere of these bands is what you can recognized, but in a abstract manner. The dark gloomy atmosphere has been interrupted by a Asian string music atmosphere, but it is just a short moment and the introspective music goes on, with more open and repeating sounds. This small collection of unreleased tracks of Freiband is a beauty… There a just 30 copies… and I think that it not enough, because this music is worth listening to more people! (JKH)
Address: http://freekkinkelaar.nl/beam-ends/

CHEFKIRK / SOMNAPHON - TENDER PINK MOVEMENTS (cassette by Bicephalic Records)
Micro sound - statics (rain, ) tiny glitches, very short snippets, hums, of field recordings- domestics, distant railway locomotives, radical panning, a mixture of abstract dead electronica - long near silences with very evocative and spatial recordings....  "silly" electro loops and light sabers. Side two of the cassette is Spacey Yamaha synthesizer pads - floating in reverb - with added micro percussive doodling... (the arty bit)  - "weird" chords and deep reverbed descending drones... segues to chimes and then a ridiculous loop of robotic cats and mice which wanders on through insects? and warble distortion.
We have again on the CDR a bizarre mixture of dead micro sounds and spatial atmospherics. Tracks of long feedback via no input mixer at times raw , sometimes mixed static, at others deep drones. The Bicephalic label belongs to August Traeger who is Somnaphon, Chefkirk is Roger H Smith and appears here on Justin Lloyd's label, one of many which is part of some 'collective' of 'artist' / 'labels' of many names who operate within a genre I think they would prefer called "experimental'
rather than 'noise', as it seeks to inhabit the woodwork of modernity, not so much as some beetle tapping out a death knell, it certainly doesn't want to bring the metanarrative roof down in an apocalyptic crash of harsh noise, or remove the pillars like a blinded Sampson. The philistines, I have said, were a cultured race, and this micro-music is all about culture. Stockhausen and Cage, Moog and Jobs and Gates between them whilst making money gave out blank cheques. And so microlife lite such as this is able not only to live on but prosper as microbial mats. The microbial mat is the human biological surface of the earth which now exists as ubiquitous univocally of micro technologies, electronical, environmental, economic/political noologosphere - and not to be confused with the pre-cambrian bacteria, otherwise I'd be accused of arguing for some kind of completed circle which is abhorrent to life and an economics of growth- and so also to music (avant-garde / experimental) in Marxist/Darwinian terms. The latter of course is pre-history, the former - a post - dialectics, difference qua indifference. (jliat)
Address: http://www.bicephalic.net/
Address: http://www.controlvalve.net/

LE PARFUM DE JEAN (2 cassettes by 3Patttes)
Not really a film buff, and certainly not of the b-movie genre, I had never heard of Jean Rollin (1938-2010), who is best known for vampire films and naked girl films. But the musicians invited to this old fashioned thematic compilation surely did, although I assume many of them are from France and Belgium. Among the names I recognized very few. I Scream, one of Alain Neffe's oldest incarnations, was one, and Yannick Franck was the other. So with twenty-six tracks in total not a great score, which could either mean I am highly out of touch with the current cassette scene, or that the world of experimental music is so infinitely bigger than I can imagine. Music wise this compilation is a bit all over the place. It ranges from synth like pieces to cinematographic pieces of music, which include film dialogues (Rollin films I should assume), but there is also noise (vampire teeth grinding I think), heavy guitar music and easy pop music. Its compilation wise a great work. Not because all of the pieces were really good, although most were, but because of the diversity of the tape. As I don't have a radio, but do know what I would like of a radio - being a varied bunch of experimental music from all corners of the musical spectrum rather than a limited set of styles, this is all highly enjoyable. Includes also Laag, Androvius, Planetaladol, Trublion 23, Annccil, MZ-N710, Eksul Rumor, Final Cut, Nevroz, MPHM, Tzii, Larv-R, Scott Serpent, Parrheia Sound System, Willy Marleen, Cosmo Helectra, Red City Noise, Electric Press kit,  Kack S. Sander, Finaldoll, Bruit Fanthome, Giscard le Survivant and Noise Club Paralelica. All mentioning their website, so a whole universe opens up. (FdW)
Address: http://3patttes.free.fr