Music for 5/19/23!!! Salami Rose Joe Louis

@@@ Salami Rose Joe Louis: Akousmatikous (Brainfeeder, 2023) I got to this spanking brand new release via a twat on the Twatter. If you’re clicking play on a brainfeeder jam it’s gonna be proggy, it might be any of a number of genres but there’s gonna be some super intense arranging and progging nerd feelz up in it and if you’re in denial of that well that’s not a good sign for you. This flavor of prog is dreamy, not a ton of jazz, definitely a lot of sectioning and the framing of her voice really colors the record. I’m agnostic thus far. It’s like a Yes record with fewer guitars on a big hit of meth, that’s what I hear. I didn’t really love the second track and the third is the closest to a groove that we’ve gotten but of course it’s required to be a proggy sort of groove. As with a lot of brainfeeder records I respect the complexity but frankly I could use some funk or some crust or some dank, or something that would contrast with the details, something to ground it. It’s certainly not awful but it’s an upcycled fusion with the faults I just described.

Music for 5/14/23!!! James Ellis Ford, Oval

@@@ James Ellis Ford: The Hum (Warp, 2023) Off this week’s All Music notable release email and at first blush it sounds like a an ambient jam record with abstract guitar playing, at least the first tune does. The second tune brings on the melodic basslines and it’s ‘this is the end’ from the Doors. I like it all right and I like how the melodies bust out into something slightly different. This is for normies who think they’re really cool, it’s okay but a bit on the sleepy predictable side.

@@@ Oval: Romantiq (Thrill Jockey, 2023) I’m a huge Oval fan, he does something all his own, a blend of ambient and glitch and a bit of strutured stuff but I love his shit, his shit slaps big time. I’m on the third tune Cresta and thus far it’s been a bit more New Age than I would like but there’s some engaging stuff here and there. My favorite Oval record is O from 2010, it stands above this decent effort.

Music for 4/9/23!!! Nondi_

@@@ Nondi_: Flood City Trax (Planet Mu, 2023) I really like this electronic music label and try to check out as many releases of theirs as possible. I will start this review on Sunday, peep a bit and then come back tomorrow. It opens abstract (which is what I came for) with a lot of swirling, burbling, rattling and cylcing. Sound, I love sound! Just shy of halfway through there’s a crunched up beat with some chopped vocal sounds, it’s stew that is for sure. I clicked through and it’s a different and less confrontational machine going on here. Some bleeps, a poking sounds, and an arpeggiator. I know this comes off as a childish review but I think there’s no shame in focusing on the sounds that are presented with the associations they trigger. This has more of a player piano feel, moving through a script or a roll, but very updated with a bunch of drum machine sounds. It’s quite trippy and a super interesting blend of baby toy sounds and really sophisticated arranging. Quite mad! This is music to ponder, it’s certainly not pop music but there’s some underlying sensibility afoot here. I especially like the sections where the drum machine and the thick bass starts pushing up underneath the high frequency cycling sounds. I’m feeling this third tune, Sun Juke. I listened to about half of this recording and I’m adding it to my library as I like a lot of what’s going on here but it’s very layered and bears a more focused listen.

Music for 3/26/23!!! Yoshimioizumikiyoshiduo

@@@ Yoshimioizumikiyoshiduo: YosunnyO (Thrill Jockey, 2023) This organic electric record is off this week’s All Music notable release email. The first track, clipped below, is a blend of janky piano and electronic sounds. It has a loose and improvised feel and I’m into it. It does appear to have a structure but it’s certainly no dictated by a drum machine pattern. I’m enjoying its very organic nature and am surfing on the changes and vibes it traverses through. It’s a bit challenging to describe these tunes, they meander but have focus, they have various sounds that come and go and the feel intentional. That’s about what I have for you on this record, I’m enjoying it.

Music for 2/20/23!!!! Phew

@@@ Phew: Our Likeness (Mute, 2023) Some electronic music off this week’s All Music notable release email. It’s more organic and closer to Laurie Anderson than yer normie electronic music. I had to google this artist to see which Asian language she’s speaking/half singing in (Japanese!) and see this is her first release since 1992. Yikes, it’s been a bit. This first track feels more like a summoning intro track than a formalized composed song. Let’s see where this goes. The second tune is a friendly rocker with electro components– some humor, and a lighter vibe. The third track, Being, is a more angry affair while not being very angry. I have no clue what she’s on about as I don’t know Japanese and honestly I often prefer not being able to understand lyrics. Overall I’m guessing this is more for her hardcore fans, I like it, it’s not exactly my favorite type of electronic music but hey that’s just me.

Music for 2/15/23!!! Maps, Andy Shauf

@@@ Maps: Thru Lights (Mute, 2023) A coupla listens off this week’s All Music notable release email. I think I heard a few tracks from the last record by this outfit. The record opens with a track called Witchy Feel and it’s an active harpsichord-y patch, then a kick drum and I think it’s a couple of moves away from reaching it’s full thing. A little tinkly percussion, some whooshing, and then snare as the harpsichord patch gives way to a distinctly electro lead sound. It’s not a funky feel, it’s more like a Scottish dance troop feel if that’s how you roll. There’s a bit of dancefloor action happening with the kick drum sound. I dig the second tune, Heya Yaha, as it’s got some funk to it, thought the cascading female vocal syllables is not funky, it’s more angelic. I like the more abstract electronic music and I like it as funky as possible, that’s where I’m at.

@@@ Andy Shauf: Wasted On You (Anti-, 2023) This is the opening track on a record called Norm, and by the initial feels it’s music for normies or making fun of music for normies. It’s got a very Cali soft rock feel to it. There’s a nice synth hook going, it sounds a bit like a harp and a bit like a guitar and Shauf’s voice couldn’t be more chill. Let’s peep a bit more. The second tune Catch Your Eye. The emphasis here is on the melodies but I fear this might be a bit soft, too soft for me. I don’t need tons of grit and whoomph but a little wouldd be nice, I’m not gonna lie. I’m not the hardest of the hardcore but there’s a sort of cloying feeling that comes with ultra soft music as it’s trying so hard to be my friend. He’s got an awful nice, plain retro bass sound working here and I’m feeling the bass player.

Music for 2/1/23!!! Deathprod

@@@ Deathprod: Compositions (N/A, 2022) This be some dark chill electronic music that is the bandcamp album of the day. How chill is chill and how does the darkness effect the chill? Depends on who’s imbibing this music Imma guessing. There are 17 compositions on this record and Composition 2 is coming out a bit less chill than Composition 1 with more of a chainsawy patch and some modulation. Two sounds push against each other, it’s cool. There are moments where the music pulls itself out of its background music for Satan mode and demands my attention but a lot of it just passes by. There’s an improvised quality to this music that I like. It is meant to be a dark slow ride, I get that — part of me does struggle with the minimal soundscapes but part of me thinks it’s okay to want more. It is strange and kinda cool to think of quietly disturbing background music for ill bitches like Jeff Bezos and Donald Trump to eat their dinner of baby skulls and workers’ sweat.

Music for 1/11/23!!! Lila Tarando a Violeta

@@@ Lila Tirando a Violeta: Desire Path (NAAFI Tapes, 2022) I’m scraping through all manner of end of 2022 lists as not much new music is released in January and I found this record towards the bottom of Pitchfork’s best electronic music of the year. I like the opening track, it’s got funk in the beat and weirdness in the rest of the mix so you can just kick back and groove on that weirdness as she pumps the beat. Let’s peep a bit more. I don’t like the second track as much as the beat is a bit more klunky and takes over the track a bit much but hey, you might dig it. The third track Tungsten Tears is a starred track on Apple Music and features a vaguely Latin beat that spins around a metallic drop followed by a sound very similar to a thumb piano. Very rhythmic and the melody falls in and synchs with the beat before breaking out into another section. She gets into some wood stick skittering that could be emulating hi hat but it’s stylish and hot and I’m feeling this track. Both dancefloor qualified as well as abstractly interesting to listen to. I wouldn’t say this hits the spot bingo but I respect the arrangements as well as a lot of the feels that the formula produces.

Music for 1/3/22!!! Chrisman

@@@ Chrisman: Makila (Hakuna Kulala, 2022) We’re taking a brief detour into some African electronic music to start the year. The record opens up with the track Alarmed for Passion, notable for its layered drum machine patterns done in a manner I really dig. It’s got a steady pulse with the kick drum but then has all manner of hectic rhythm layered on top. It’s pleasantly aggro and the bulk of the melodic component is baked into hammered percussion type sounds. I am enjoying the medium darkness of this record and there’s some really interesting stuff going on here. I’m a huge fan of cultural mashing when it goes the way I want it to go. This musician is taking familiar elements and ideas from hip hop, trap feels but not beats, and dark industrial stuff and throwing in some polyrhythm and different vibes to it. These sounds are all pretty synthetic sounding but the way it’s all put together ends up producing a very organic and alive musical vibe. I don’t know about other folks but I just get lost in this shit I find it very engaging. Check it out!

Music for 12/18/22!!! Pole

@@@ Pole: Tempus (Mute, 2022) I got to this record via a meh 10 best list on the Guardian. This looks set to be an abstract and dubby techno record with some techno feels but other stuff and I like other stuff with electro bits. These are all six and seven minute bangers, the opener a tad sleepy but this second one, Grauer Sand, is brisk with some low dub bass and lots of squiggle action. I like it as it’s tight and loose, some techno be too tight. Duder is quite expert at layering in the sounds, processed and otherswise and then dropping some tight snare sounds and other bits to make a fully assembled burger. There’s an awareness of time and space here that I dig, it’s fresh and unfolding in a way that I find really enjoyable, lots of good bangers on here. Check this out. Could be a late in the season find and I’ll take it. You can chill on this while also paying attention to how it rolls by.