Some Introductory Words
There was so much good music that came out this year. After barely being able to scrape together ten good albums to make a list out of last year, 2017 redeemed my faith in music in a massive way. I shattered my personal record for new-music-listening this year, and, in the process, I discovered a ton of good, very good, and occasionally mind-blowingly good stuff in the corners and crevices – stuff that many outlets seemed to ignore. And while I admit that I have a tendency to get more excited about lesser-known artists, I assure you … Read more
The ruin of a generation is shattering.
In this hour, the eyes of the one who watches fill
With the gold of his stars.
Georg Trakl was one of the pioneers of expressionism in its poetry form, an art movement which started in the early 20th century with the purpose of using powerful emotions and moods to express one’s view of the world. “Helian” was, according to him, his most precious and painful poem ever written; dealing with death, decadence, existential crisis and man’s struggle with religion. With this topic on the table, avant-garde masterminds Ayloss … Read more
Dear Apollo – Volume One
Oh, how far we’ve come, since the days of Look Right Penny! The Floridan quintet arrived on the map with their striking debut Sugar Lane, but soon disbanded. After many issues and obstacles, the “core couple” of Cotee Embry and Mariel Diaz-Carrion moved out and battled hard. Here we stand today, and the kids with high hopes come back with a new project called Dear Apollo. Cotee is now in charge of everything except the vocals and lyrics, and it transpires that he was the main brain behind Look Right Penny’s music … Read more
Venetian Snares is a well-known Canadian electronic music experimenter; he’s been at it since at least 1997 with Fake:Impossible. Today, with his twenty-fourth full-length studio album (from what I can gather), Aaron Funk delivers a surprising blow to the unprepared listener. Indeed, She Began to Cry Tears of Blood Which Became Little Brick Houses When They Hit the Ground is an album most hectic that seems to be unable to keep a steady focus for more than a minute.
First of all, the twelve song titles read like surrealist snippets, each creating its very own … Read more
For full disclosure, yes, I’ve backed this project on indiegogo. Nonetheless, I think this album is a really awesome one! Monoliths and Sepulchres is the debut full-length from Denton, Texas-based experimental jazz unit The Octopod. The aptly-named Octopod features eight musicians, including three horn-blowers (correction: five). As such, their music is heavily textured and rich. The album moves from free jazz during the prelude, postlude, and interludes to composed scores in the main tracks. Consequently, the result is a highly aberrant album that’s nonetheless a more than recommended listen. Its theme is to grow progressively … Read more
Jan Wouter Oostenrijk – We Are Connected
[Listen to audio previews here.]
Dutch electric quartertone guitarist Jan Wouter Oostenrijk comes back with his fourth album, We Are Connected. This album is a bridge between Maghrebi jazz, rock music, and desert blues. It’s full of really interesting ideas, and the odd grooves – especially in 9/8 – are more than noteworthy; I can’t get the bass and drums line of “Hurriya” out of my head! Moreover, all songs are in different maqamat, which is really the centrepiece of the album.
– II Dios Trio
is an instrumental band… Read more