Saturday, 25 February 2012

TotW - Ametsub - The Solo To Untamed Place

Ametsub is a Japanese IDM glitch artist. His works have a strong Autechre vibe to them. This song is very pretty. It has a smooth flute lurking in the background through most of the song, while glitchy sounds take the center stage. Very good stuff. The album is pretty great as well. I'd recommend it.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

The Flashbulb - Opus at the End of Everything

The Flashbulb is the main pseudonym for Benn Jordan's IDM project. He's no newcomer to the music game, with this release being his 12th album. Over the course of these many years, his sound has evolved. He's currently getting more and more atmosphere; it will soon reach open-field nirvana. This album has a whopping 25 tracks, though most of them aren't very long. Because of their short length, most of these tracks hang on to one idea. Each track also segues into the next, so it's not like they end abruptly. That's why it's better to look at this albums as a whole rather than song by song. Like I mentioned earlier, this is a very atmospheric IDM album, with atmospheric pads and some reverb. It also features guest performances on the violin, viola and cello. I like how Benn has lots of ideas and sounds, but sometimes I'd like to see it evolving over time. It's always sad to hear something you really like quickly segueing into something different. I guess it's just the way he does things. The actual music itself is really good though. The guitar throughout the album is fantastic. It sort of has a post-rock vibe. The atmospheric pads/drums is great and cool glitches on certain tracks. The strings are also, like the rest, great. I don't really have any complaints on the instrumentation. My main issue is just that I don't feel like these songs are very memorable, which is another problem I have with short songs/many tracks albums. This is still a very nice sounding album. If you like his music and want him to make more, you should probably buy his album. Although I do post download links, I highly encourage you to buy music and support the artists that you like. Here's his bandcamp.

7 out of 10 people will like open fields.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra @ La Tulipe 19/02/12

To me, Efrim Manuel Menuck is a genius. His music is some of the most influential stuff I've ever heard. His work with Godspeed You! Black Emperor shaped what is my taste in music today. He made me appreciate things I've never cared about before. So when I heard he was touring with A Silver Mt. Zion, I just had to go and, boy, what a night.

The opening artist was Steve Bates. Never heard of him? Don't worry, most people haven't (hipster victory). Hell, I couldn't even find anything about him on Google. Absolutely nothing. I only knew about him after searching for him on, which had one of his albums. He plays some ambient drone, kind of similar to Tim Hecker I guess, but maybe a little more experimental. Long build ups, pretty textures, loud sounds. One moment, the feedback was a little too loud, that I kinda hurt my ears, but it was an overall solid performance. He didn't really seem to care that the audience was there, though. He never acknowledged us, or even say a single word. Oh well.

Up next was the main dish, A Silver Mt. Zion. And boy did they come out and play masterfully. I enjoyed their live performance more than their studio recordings. The sound is bigger and better. With his whiny voice, Efrim sang his heart out. They played some of their biggest hits, including "13 Blues for Thirteen Moons" (got it on video, I'll upload it when I get the chance), "Black Waters Blowed", "Blind Blind Blind" and "Horses in the Sky" for the encore. They also played "What We Loved Was Not Enough" and "Psalms 99" from their latest EP. Sophie Trudeau and Jessica Moss are brilliant violin players with beautiful performances. I never noticed it until tonight, but the drumming by David Payant is incredible. We can't forget about Thierry Amar on bass/double bass who also pulls off a great performance.

All these pictures were taken by Paul-Emile Hebert. You can find more stuff here:
Download the entire set here.

Might as well mention this. Efrim is quite the comedian. In between songs, he took questions from the audience. I'm mostly paraphrasing, but here's 2 particular things asked.
"What shampoo do you use?"
Efrim: "Your mom's shampoo. If I get closer, I smell like your mom."

"What's with the Stephen Harper picture?" (If you look at the pics, you can see Harper in a picture frame)
Efrim: "We don't believe in Voodoo or magic, but we keep it upside down in the hopes that he dies." He then received a standing ovation from everyone in the room.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Sleep Party People - Sleep Party People

Sleep Party People is the shoegazy dream pop bedroom project of Danish musician Brian Batz. I know that I say this a lot and that I'm starting to sound like a broken record player, but this isn't your ordinary dream pop. He manages to take a normally upbeat and happy genre and turns it into something dark, creepy and sinister. It doesn't help that he wears a bunny mask during his performances and that he names his songs stuff like "I'm Not Human At All" and "Everything Has An End", but whatever. It's an interesting change to the genre. The thing is is that it doesn't always sound dark. The beginning has a pretty upbeat sound. It starts sounding noticeably creepier at around the fifth tracks and just descends from there. It's an interesting evolution to hear. The songs also get longer as the album progresses. I guess I should also mention the weird vocals. Aside from the obligatory reverb, there's some really weird effect as well which makes it sound less human and more, um, rabbit-like, I guess? It's the only was I can describe it. I guess this Brian guy has a fetish for rabbits. Lola from Space Jam must be his wet dream or something. Whatever, I'm not judging the guy, but his music. And his music is good. He has an album coming out in April, so look out for that.

7 out of 10 rabbits will like this. Warning: This video is creepy.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Miles Davis - Sketches of Spain

In case you've been living under a rock for the past 70 years and don't know who this guy is, Miles Davis is one of the greatest and influential jazz musicians of all time. This trumpeter has a plethora of albums in his discography over the course of his very long career spanning several decades. Every one has a favourite. For some it may be Kind of Blue, and for others it mitch be Bitches Brew )awesome name, I know). This one is mine. Not entirely sure why. To me, this is by far the most beautiful sounding jazz album I've ever heard. This album features quite a large orchestra conducted by Gil Evans. This album is a modal latin jazz style. Never has an album ever painted such a clear picture in my mind. I can vividly picture the rain in spain falling mostly on the plains. The most ambitious track, Concierto de Aranjuez, is certainly the most memorable at a lengthy 16 minutes. Davis pulls of a wonderful performance, perfectly mixing with the orchestra. Seriously, this is a must for any jazz lover/enthusiast.

9 out of 10 people will like this.


Wednesday, 8 February 2012

World's End Girlfriend - Hurtbreak Wonderland

World's End Girlfriend is an experimental Japanese composer. His music is mostly labeled under post-rock, but his music is so much more than that. The best way to describe this album is modern classical with electronic glitch-noise. The songs sound really weird but I think that's why I like this album so much. It just has such a unique sound to it. This isn't just your standard modern classical with just some noise slapped onto it. It's way more complex than that. There's something that I absolutely love about the composition. The strings are one of my favorite things on the album, especially on "Ghost of a Horse Under the Chandelier." The glitch-noise is a really great contrast to the beautiful melodies played by the piano and strings. It may take more than one listen to fully appreciate it, but once it clicks, it sounds amazing.

9 out of 10 people will like this.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

TotW - Like a Bau5 - Super Mash Bros.

Sorry for the lack of stuff recently. I've been very lazy.

Super Mash Bros. are a mash-up trio that take popular songs and make them listenable. This probably isn't the best song I've heard all week, but it's definitely the funniest. It sure is worth check these guys out if you like mash-ups and that sort of stuff. This track is from their latest mixtape and it's free, so you don't really have an excuse to not download it (well, maybe laziness).