I can’t help but find this second release from Swedish singer-songwriter Anders Callenberg very appealing. Is it his easy voice? Is it the acoustic guitars and harmonica? Or maybe it’s the gentle electronic beats. All of these elements combine to create an overall mellow musical experience. Tracks 1, 5, and 6 are acoustic; tracks 2, 4, and 8 are electronic; tracks 3, 7, 9, and 10 are a nice combination of the two. Echoes, beats, strums, voices–trying to figure out the lyrics–a worthwhile endeavor and listen.
This release from the Brooklyn step sequencer contains four tracks, composed mainly of sounds that seem to come from the field, and vocal echoes that seem to come from the nethersphere. There are subtle beats that can be felt in the subconscious, and synth sounds that are most pronounced in Track 3. It’s a primal electronic type scritching on the nerves and yet sometimes it’s comforting.
Nielsdottir, Sigriour – “Grandma Lo-Fi: The Basement Tapes of Sigriour Nielsdottir” – [Hornbuckle Records]
The sweet story of Grandma Lo-Fi is best read while listening to this compilation of her songs. Turning 70 marked the start of a musical career in which she sang, used household sounds (including purring kitties) and various kitchen percussion and toys, and recorded them on cassette. Iceland has its unique musicians, but this one takes the cake. Makes you look forward to turning 70 and coming into your own. Her percussive rhythms call to mind tribal beats that span the globe. Enjoy.
Listening to this sound collage is a confusing experience. Roigk is a Berlin-based sound artist, and this texturing of field recordings, whirring drones, sporadic voices, and jarring noises represents a sonic opera. In looking at the cover art and track titles, you could imagine that Matteo’s rising has everything to do with him hanging himself, as the images are shown from an upside down perspective. Imagine what you want…that’s the point of the creaking doors and cryptic sounds. The story is what you make it.
On Side A we have Aseethe bringing us more noise than Mauul does on Side B. It’s all electronic-sounding, not musical at all, and sometimes it seems like there’s a locked groove on Side A, but there isn’t. Drone…check. Ambient…maybe, if your ambience borders on headache.
This is a lovely album of spare music composed and played by Norwegian Hytta on Hardanger fiddle, viola d’amore, and vielle. Read the liner notes to get in tune with the music, which was inspired by imagining unpeopled landscapes and colors, particularly red and blue, and images of silent gardens and blind doors. Lovely classical and folk music.
This album has a lot of short punk songs written and sung in the higher vocal registers of Quentin Moore. The rhythms are weird and catchy, and the overall mood is fairly light. Jo Miller-Gamble is the drummer, and Zach Phillips is the keyboardist. Enjoy.
This is electronica at its best. London-based producer Rival Consoles creates beats and atmospheres that pulse through your subconscious and make you feel like you’re moving through a surreal movie scene.
Charlotte Marionneau is French-born but lives in London. Fortunately, she still has that lovely French accent. She wrote most of the lyrics on this album, and she sings a lot of them in French. Her voice is youthful, cute, and appealing. The musical settings are lovely (piano, strings) and the songs end much too early, leaving you longing for more. Sweet and evanescent.
This is noisy, buzzing rock with male and female vox. Some tracks are peppier than others, but mostly the beats are plodding. I prefer the tracks featuring the female vox to the male. We have other Indian Jewelry releases in the library, so there’s definitely a niche for it with our listeners.
I know nothing about this except that it appears like DIY with only a piece of camouflage fabric acting as the CD cover. It???s acoustic guitar and male lyrics sung in a razorblade voice. It has a charm that I can???t quite put my finger on. Raw emotion and vocal delivery are the name of the game.
These are gritty tunes in the country style of telling woes that can be met with strong, hard liquor. The track titles pull you in, as do the lyrics. This isn’t feel-good country, but rather tell-it-like-it-is, warts and all. You come out from the catharsis feeling like you’ve grown a backbone.
This debut album from the Chicago band that falls under the genre of folk rock is pretty easy on the ears. The lead singer reminds me of Bob Dylan, and the ballads, which are thankfully printed out in the sleeve, are rather endearing in their relatability, especially the last track, “Right Through Me.” Shannon & the Clams appear on Side A with “Heartbreak,” which is also enjoyable.
This music is supposedly black metal, but it doesn’t seem black or like metal to me. That isn’t necessarily bad, unless you are really expecting metal. It features echoey voices that put you in mind of the Moody Blues, and steady beats that sometimes approach doom. The last several songs get shimmery and interesting, and there is a niche for them somewhere.
Maybe some of you might now of Atalanta through hearing Marlo Thomas and Alan Alda sing of her in the CD “Free to Be You and Me.” The story has the same root as this opera, which is to say that Atalanta was a princess who could run faster than any man in the kingdom. In order to help her choose a prince, Atalanta’s father said whoever could beat Atalanta in a race would win her hand. If he lost, he would die. One man wins the race, but because he and Atalanta made Aphrodite mad, they were turned into leopards who could not reproduce. This opera is about the male leopard, whose three-part character is compared to Max Ernst, Willard Reynolds, and Bud Powell. The music is avant-gard classical, the keyboards are by Blue Gene Tyranny, and the liner notes explain the musical setting in great detail. I do not care for this, but someone will.
Trubee, John and The Ugly Janitors of America – “a Blind Man’s Penis and Other Smash Hits” – [Trubee Records]
This album is truly great. It contains songs that have been lying in wait for us since 1983, and although they are full of FCCs, they contain great messages underneath the jaunty, almost humorous beat and melodies, which are catchy and appealing. Kind of rock, deceptively silly, and rollicking. Trubee is smart, and he uses humor and sarcasm to deliver his words. Horns, percussion, guitars, male and female vox. I particularly enjoy “Take a Shit on Me.”
This album is a family affair, with Martha and Lucy, daughters of Loudon Wainwright, joining voices and guitar strums to bring you lullabies sung to them by their mothers (they are half-sisters) and written by their papa and their mamas. Other family members and friends join them in the music production. It’s haunting country folk in a minor, nostalgic key, beautiful and evocative. The feeling is akin to that you get when you listen to Marissa Nadler.
This short but sweet aperitif of Bell’s Incitation track and Radio Version of it leave you wondering what the other tracks sound like. Bell (who is based in Brooklyn but born in Moscow) executes the electronics of this music well, and her voice is perhaps her greatest instrument. Lyrics printed on CD sleeve.
There’s a little something for everyone in this compilation disc of excerpts from in-store performances at Aquarius. Spin the track dial and see if you come up with reggae, rock, electronics, noise, jazz, metal…Only 50 of these were made so enjoy being among the chosen few to listen.
Joe Cooley hailed from Ireland and played the accordion with such heart that this album was made to preserve the experience of his music for generations of lovers of jigs, reels, and country folk music. Tony MacMahon writes the touching liner notes that describe how the first 8 songs were recorded at a session just a month before Cooley died at the age of 49 on December 21, 1973. After a stint in America and San Francisco, Cooley was home and packed the bar in South County Galway so there were even folk outside in the rainy November night gathered to hear the musician one last time. Side two has songs from earlier in Cooley’s life. This is a bittersweet tribute.
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