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Music

James Welburn: Sleeper In The Void (LP, Miasmah, April 2021)

I was well-disposed to this record before I listened to it because I had taken a childish pleasure in its title, which I admired for its OTT vibe which put me in mind of a nihilist Dune. So when it opened with a quietly rumbling gong (or something gongy) which you just know is going […]

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Music

Robin Rimbaud: Staging Silence (2LP, Sub Rosa, April 2021)

Hans Op de Beeck‘s Staging Silence is a film art series in which a camera points at a table as hands come in from either side to construct and transform dioramas of various tranquil scenes, such as a wooden jetty on a moonlit lake, often out of recognizable everyday objects. Elegantly lit, and presented in […]

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Music

Faith Coloccia & Philip Jeck: Stardust (CD, Touch, May 2021)

This arrived as a bit of a surprise to me: apparently, I had pre-ordered it, I think on the basis of a link from a Touch newsletter, and then forgotten all about it until it plonked through my letterbox. In this spirit, I have decided not to educate myself about its backstory. I can tell […]

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Music

Sara Berts: Ayni (LP, Gang Of Ducks, April 2021)

According to the blurb on the back, this record was born out of two experiences: a trip to the Peruvian Amazon, and the strict lockdown in Italy. Most of the sounds here were made on a Buchla Music Easel in the latter context; the former provided field recordings from the Mayantuyaca centre for Asháninka healing, […]

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Music

Claire Rousay: A Softer Focus (LP, American Dreams, April 2021)

There is a strong lockdown vibe to this record, but in a sunny, blissed-out, lemonade-making kind of a way. The six tracks here take in gauzy, ambient synth sounds, strings both gently droning and elegantly melodic, field recordings that tend towards the splashing water and the passing buses and the children playing in the distance […]

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Music

Grace Ferguson: Voler (LP, Music Company, February 2021)

This is one of those records where I started to feel myself falling for it about a minute into my first listen, and was head over heels by about minute five. There’s this rather lovely delicate piano sound, you see. But then there’s this helicopter. And there’s just about birdsong. Then the piano builds in […]

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Music

Emeka Ogboh: Beyond The Yellow Haze (2×12″, A-TON, January 2021)

This record was a surprise and a delight. The blurb I’d read about Emeka Ogboh had described him as a field recordist who’d had his work in art galleries, and I guess I was expecting something kind of austere. But bang on the first track, Lekki Aiah Freeway, and you’re hit with this awesome shuffling […]

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Music

Abul Mogard: In Immobile Air (LP, Ecstatic, January 2021)

There was a lot of hype when this retired Serbian steel plant worker turned modular synth ambient wizard hit the scene. I managed to resist it until 2018’s Above All Dreams, when I fell hard. Or rather, I didn’t, because there’s nothing hard about this music: better to say that I plunged deeply into its […]

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Music

My albums of 2020

I’m not going to try to tell you here what 2020 was about. I mean, you were there, and you had your own experience of it, and there’s not much I can add. One observation that is, however, blogworthy, is that I wound up listening to a lot of drone music. And some ambient and […]

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Music

Monolake: Archaeopteryx (2CD, Imbalance, November 2020)

I didn’t know it, but I really needed this. There’s something very comforting about tucking into a hefty slab of crunchy Monolake loveliness, and this is 95 minutes of the good stuff. Not that this record doesn’t have it’s surprises. Sure, for much of the time we’re in familiar territory: skittering beats, sci-fi stylings that […]