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Music

Efdemin: Chicago (CD, Dial, May 2010)

This is just really nice, detailed, finely crafted house. It’s quite heavily Chicago-tinged, as you might guess from the title — then again, Efdemin are based in Berlin, and that clearly shows too. It’s not revolutionary, but it’s gently propulsive, sophisticated without any of that glossy coffee-table feel, and overall I found it very appealing. […]

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Jóhann Jóhannson: And In The Endless Pause There Came The Sound Of Bees (CD, Type, April 2010)

Jóhannson is an Icelandic composer, probably best known for the concept piece IBM 1401: A User’s Manual. This (splendidly titled) album is big, swooshing, string-drenched, and shamelessly dramatic. There are moments which remind me of Philip Glass, others which remind me of György Ligeti. He has a great knack for structure, bringing back themes from […]

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VA mixed and remixed by Todd Terje: Remaster Of The Universe (CD + Mix CD, Permenant Vacation, June 2010)

This is a two CD set. One is a compilation of nine of Terje’s remixes. It’s always good to hear his version Lindstrøm’s “Another Station”, though I must already have it on at least half a dozen different mixes. I didn’t know M’s “Pop Muzik” before, but his remix is really extremely catchy. Other than […]

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Music

Monolake: Silence (CD, Imbalance, December 2009)

If you don’t like Monolake (and there are fools out there who don’t, you know) then this probably won’t win you over. If you do, this will do very nicely thank you. Complex, stark, endlessly involving, and atmospheric, this is ultra-minimal headphones techno at it’s best. The thing that struck me most about this, compared […]

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Music

Rameses III: I Could Not Love You More (CD, Type, September 2009)

Awww, my headphones are hugging me. The basis here are long, droning string-like sounds, which pulse at something like the rate of a fast but not frantic heartbeat, and modulate over a much longer period whilst still being recognizably rhythmic. Around that we get touches of lap steel (which can’t help reminding me of the […]

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Music

Vladislav Delay: Tummaa (CD, Leaf, September 2009)

In which Sasu Ripatti takes techno apart, puts it back together all wrong, and ends up with something weird and a bit wonderful. It’s like someone is doing lego on acid, and instead of a car they have ended up with something weird and spidery and liable to fall apart at any moment, but somehow […]

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Music

Peter Broderick & Machinefabriek: Blank Grey Canvas Sky (CD, Fang Bomb, December 2009)

Aw, now, this is fantastic. Peter Broderick’s delicate and richly emotional strings and pianos meet Rutger Zuydervelt’s electronic droning and clicking, found sounds, and production trickery. And they sound like they were born to go together. It’s at once very human and completely alien, defiantly experimental and completely natural. There’s a fair range of styles, […]

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Music

Martin Buttrich: Crash Test (CD, Desolat, March 2010)

There is a lot of variety in this collection of 11 tracks of laid-back minimal. What unifies them is a production style which is detailed, deep, and assured. There’s nothing here that sets my world alight, but every track is superbly put together, and there’s a great warmth to it. I bought this from Boomkat. […]

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Music

Ólafur Arnalds: Dyad 1909 (CD, Erased Tapes, December 2009)

Strings and piano combine with occasional ambient washes, devastating electronic thumping sounds, and computer vocals to excellent effect. This was written as the soundtrack for a dance piece, and is unashamedly dramatic. But it stands very well on its own. Some of it feels like modern classical. Some of it feels like ambient. Some of […]

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Music

Richard Skelton: Landings (CD, Type, January 2010)

An exciting collection of 12 works for strings. There is a great ragged, wild feeling to this record, along with an intense sense of location — many tracks were apparently recorded in ruined farmhouses and the like, and this really comes through. The pace is always measured, but there is a great variety in technique, […]