Archive for the ‘First Listen’ Category
We are delighted to premiere Polish composer and violinist Stefan Wesolowksi’s new solo work ‘Rite of the End’ – the album’s glorious title-track – which is released on 28th April via Mind Travel Series (sub-label of prestigious French label Ici d’ailleurs).
Following his recent score to the BAFTA-nominated and Oscar-shortlisted Marlon Brando docu-film ‘Listen To Me Marlon’, Polish composer and violinist Stefan Wesolowski will release his rapturous new album ‘Rite of the End’, on 28th April. This is his second long-player for Mind Travels Series – the sub-label on French indie Ici d’ailleurs – following 2015’s ‘Kompleta’.
“I was born in Cold War era Poland in 1985, as the son of a pious and uncompromising man. At the age of seven I wanted to be a priest and study the history of the Saints, while other children of my age were still collecting Lion King cards,” recalls Wesolowski.
Whilst studying classical music, very early on he had a revelation, thanks to a companion who was a Dominican monk. “We were teenagers,” recounts Stefan “and this friend asked me to write him liturgical songs. That’s how it all started”.
As Wesolowski grew up, he lost his religious faith but transposed it into a growing belief in what he calls “a musical vibration, which permits transcendence, contemplation and wonderment.”
The brooding violin piece begins with sprawling drone passages reminiscent of Stars of the Lid, exuding raw emotion and a gripping intensity. The symphonic tour-de-force evolves into noise-unfurled ambient soundscapes as pulsating waves of textures ascend into the forefront of the mix, belonging to the stratosphere of Iceland’s Valgeir Sigurðsson and Ben Frost in the process. Later, the composition beautifully incorporates electronic elements where sprawling strings roar like the swell of ocean waves.
‘Rite of the End’ is released on 28th April via Mind Travels Series.
We are thrilled to premiere the new remix album ‘Cycles_1’ – a collection of remixes of London-based organist and composer James Mc Vinnie’s ‘Cycles’ opus – which comes out this Friday, 24th March 2017 via the prestigious Icelandic label Bedroom Community.
‘Cycles_1’ features Remixes by Sam Slater, Matt Huxley, Scanner, Talos, Paul Evans, Liam Byrne and Alex Groves. Taken from James McVinnie’s debut Bedroom Community album, ‘Cycles’ (music composed by Nico Muhly).
This is the fifth release on Bedroom Community’s HVALREKI digital series.
‘Cycles_1’ is available this Friday 24th March 2017 as part of Bedroom Community’s HVALREKI digital series. ‘Cycles_1’ can be purchased HERE.
“I wanted to take one of the shortest and most frenetic pieces on the album and flip it on it’s head, turning it into this extremely slow and very spacious piece. There are just a few tiny fragments that repeat and layer and gradually build up into this big wall of noise. It kinda feels like the original got stretched beyond recognition and all these other sounds came into view.”
“The track itself is this beautiful, stirring set of motifs that speak to each other but never really touch. In a way I saw the remix as the aftermath of that conversation… Something ponderous and tactile.”
“I was looking towards expanding upon the original piece, whilst retaining its elegance and grandeur. It explores a form of cinematic expression with pulsing light and dark, with a series of repetitive motifs that gradually develop into a percussive workout that continues to envelop a skeletal adaptation of the original Prelude throughout. Most of the string and keyboard parts I added were played live with no computer trickery to improve the timing. It closes in a very intimate way with additional vocal and guitar parts. I always enjoy the flow and tension of performing live to tape.”
“My idea was to use as little as possible. I broke a plate in the kitchen, sampled it and mangled a single loop of Nadia’s breath, violin and a single organ chord from Jamie. Everything else is just processing and kick drums, all placed inside some kind of ceramic texture world. It’s meant to sound like rocks underwater, or cracking knuckles or something.”
“I have had a longstanding love for liturgical music and the interaction between sound and architecture. With this remix I wanted to explore the space between notes and to build a sonic temple to religious ecstasy.”
“This remix was mostly made back in 2013, as a way to pass the time on the plane back from having visited Nico in New York. I wanted it to be a pure collage, so there are no extra bits added in, with everything coming from the original track. I think this was the first of all these remixes to be made, so I’m very happy to see it released.”
‘Cycles_1’ is available this Friday 24th March 2017 as part of Bedroom Community’s HVALREKI digital series. ‘Cycles_1’ can be purchased HERE.
We are thrilled to premiere an exclusive track from Limerick City-based pianist and composer Paddy Mulcahy. The gifted Irish producer’s latest record ‘The Words She Said’ is scheduled for release later this week (Wednesday, 1st March) and follow-up to 2016’s solo piano works ‘Tape Sketches’ and ‘TwentySix’ (released via the prestigious Swedish imprint 1631 Recordings).
The sonic palette expands on ‘The Words She Said’ with pulsating analogue synthesisers fused with layers of mesmerizing piano patterns, forming in turn, beguiling and luminous soundscapes.
The achingly beautiful piano lament ‘Brother Walks In’ can be streamed below:
‘The Words She Said’ is available on 1st March 2017 and is available for pre-order HERE.
We are delighted to premiere an exclusive new track from Seattle-based ambient artist Benoît Pioulard. The ethereal ambient bliss of ‘Rook’ is taken from a brand new, handmade, tour-only album of recent works, limited to 100 copies, which will be for sale during Thomas Meluch’s upcoming European tour (see dates below).
The towering instrumental work ‘Rook’ permeates a vast, otherworldly realm of total transcendence, evoking the timeless sound of fellow luminaries – and Kranky labelmates – Stars of the Lid, Loscil, Grouper and Meluch’s own cherished songbook and storied career. The angelic tones and radiant pulses somehow maps all of life’s fleeting moments in one gorgeous, captivating ripple flow.
The first Benoît Pioulard European tour in three years will take in the following cities:
04 Mar: Cork, Ireland @ Triskel Arts Centre
05 Mar: Dublin, Ireland @ Bello Bar
07 Mar: Reykjavik, Iceland @ Mengi
09 Mar: Paris, France @ Supersonic
10 Mar: Ghent, Belgium @ Dauw HQ
11 Mar: Brussels, Belgium @ Huis 23
12 Mar: Girmont, France @ Une Figue dans le Poirier
14 Mar: Geneva, Switzerland @ L’Usine
15 Mar: Zurich, Switzerland @ Zukunft
16 Mar: La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland @ L’Entre Deux
18 Mar: Trieste, Italy @ Tetris
At all shows, a brand new, handmade, tour-only album of recent works, limited to 100 copies will be available at the Merch table.
We are extremely pleased to be hosting Benoit Pioulard’s Cork concert:
Fractured Air & Plugd Records present:
Benoît Pioulard (Kranky) + Wry Myrrh @ Gupld, Triskel Arts Centre, Cork SAT 4th March 2017
Tickets: €12.50 (excluding booking fee)
Purchase tickets HERE
We’re very pleased to premiere the live studio version of ‘Temperature Drop’ from UK ambient collective Marconi Union, taken from the recently released double album ‘Tokyo+’ (via London-based imprint Just Music).
‘Tokyo +’ by Marconi Union, the original ‘Tokyo’ album together with a new accompanying EP ‘+’ of Live Studio Remixes was released last week by London-based imprint Just Music for the first time as a double album.
Originally released as the single album ‘Tokyo’ by the German record label Bine in 2009, ‘Tokyo’ was only made available as a CD in Germany and then only in a very limited number of copies.
The Manchester-based group create introspective ambient soundscapes that evokes the far-reaching ambient works of Brian Eno, Harold Budd and Biosphere. The hypnotic synthesizers and soothing warmth of guitars radiates throughout ‘Temperature Drop’, recalling the early 70’s Krautrock movement as well as legendary Chicago ensemble Tortoise and the experimental German label Denovali Records’ output.
“The original idea (and title) for Tokyo stemmed from a chance comment. We had just finished recording a track and after playing it back one of us (we can’t remember who) said that it reminded them of Tokyo. Neither of of us had ever been to Tokyo and we realised that our entire conception of the city originated from films, TV and books. We liked this idea of creating music for a place that only existed in our minds. We weren’t interested in faithfully representing the reality of Tokyo and had no wish to make “authentic” Japanese music, we really just liked the images of Tokyo we’re regularly exposed to. We thought of this music as a form of Hi-Tech Ambience.”
‘Tokyo +’ by Marconi Union is available now on Just Music.
Cheval Sombre (New York-based poet and songwriter Christopher Porpora) has earned his reputation in recent times as one of independent music’s true treasures. Having released two full length albums to date: 2008’s self-titled debut album (Double Feature Records) and 2012’s moving opus ‘Mad Love’ (Sonic Cathedral Recordings); 2017 marks the eagerly awaited third Cheval Sombre LP ‘Time Waits for No One’. We are delighted to premiere the video to the achingly beautiful lament ‘If It’s You’, the record’s illuminating first single.
On “If It’s You”, Porpora’s drone-infused psych hazes infiltrates the human space amidst a windswept beauty of fragile vocals and mesmeric viola passages; navigating lyrical, emotional and spiritual depths. The majestic ballad “If It’s You” conjures up the timeless sound of the early Stones ballads penned by Jagger & Richards interwoven with Robbie Basho’s transcendent flow of lyrical guitar tapestries. A master of intimate mystery. The sparse arrangement of Porpora’s voice and guitar is accompanied by Gillian Rivers’ divine viola playing.
The exclusive vinyl-only release – released via UK independent label Static Caravan Records – are viewmaster reel 7″ records – true pieces of art in and of themselves. The record also features the hauntingly beautiful B-side “Give Me Something”, a haunting instrumental performed as a collaboration by Porpora (guitars) and legendary New Zealand-based artist Alastair Galbraith (elbowed guitars), recorded at the Bhakti Box and Hope St. Studios.
Watch the video for “If It’s You” here:
“If It’s You” is available now (limited vinyl) via Static Caravan Records (purchase online HERE).
The prestigious Fruits De Mer label have also released a split 7″ with Static Caravan, featuring a Cheval Sombre cover of Sam Cooke’s “A Change Is Gonna Come”, (purchase online HERE).
There is also a recently finished LP with Dean Wareham which is expected in 2017, recorded between Los Angeles & New York, as well as the third Cheval Sombre full-length album, “Time Waits for No One”, destined to be one of 2017’s hidden gems.
We are delighted to premiere the new single ‘Someone told me I was Paradise for you’ from the gifted Copenhagen-based quartet We Like We. The gorgeous new sonic creation is the first material since the band’s critically acclaimed debut album ‘A New Age of Sensibility’ (released in late 2014). The highly anticipated single is released tomorrow, 1st September 2016.
Copenhagen-based quartet We Like We comprise the gifted talents of Katrine Grarup Elbo (violin) Josefine Opsahl (cello) Sara Nigard Rosendal (percussion) and Katinka Fogh Vindelev (voice). All four members are classically trained, but each share a desire for exploring, experimenting and shaping a unique sound of their own, as reflected in their diverse musical influences. The group’s first live performance took place at FROST festival in Copenhagen in February 2013: a unique double-bill concert with Efterklang. We Like We have collaborated with an array of musicians and projects in the past: Efterklang; Julia Holter; Mew; Sofia Gubaidulina; The Danish National Symphony Orchestra, to name but a few. We Like We’s debut album ‘A New Age of Sensibility’ is available now on The Being Music.
“This single is one of the results of our work over the past six months. We have had a close collaboration with sound engineer Marc Casanovas (NorCat Lyd) with whom we have explored sound, space and different ways of recording”.
—We Like We
Someone told me I was paradise for you is the endless mantra that is whispered in to your ear during the late hours of a dark blue summer night. It is four individual voices and reflections braided together as a unit in the depths of the collective unconsciousness.
From the opening dream-like pulses of delicate percussion – beginning with two gongs before soft ripples of vibraphone effortlessly melds together – We Like We’s brand new recording invites the listener deep into a labyrinth of fragile beauty and encapsulating dreams. The ambient works of Harold Budd lies somewhere in the ether of these burning flames, wherein a tenderness and stillness of night radiates with each and every meditative heart-beat. Soon, achingly beautiful instrumentation of violin is carefully added, evoking the glimmering rays of hope across cascading skies: dapples of light flicker along the horizon. The modern-classical soundscapes and divine instrumentation conjures up the timeless sound of the prestigious Touch or Type labels with the spirit of Peter Broderick, Sylvain Chauveau and Hildur Guðnadóttir
At the half-way point, the mesmerising voice of Katinka Fogh Vindelev whispers directly to one’s mind’s eye. Like a bird in full-flight, these four combined elements of strings, voice and percussion soars majestically with unlimited possibilities of discovery, exploration and chance. The mantra-like phrases sung by Vindelev transports the listener to the poignant, dream-like fantasies of Kazuo Ishiguro’s master novels or the otherworldly realm crafted by Kafka. This sublime tapestry of gradual blissed-out tones reveals inner-most truths and awakens a myriad of feelings and emotion. The compelling, ambitious and sublime new single is nestled nicely amidst the avant-garde, modern-classical and luminaries such as Scott Walker (‘Tilt’ era) and L.A’s Julia Holter and ‘Parallelograms’-era Linda Perhacs.
Released on The Being Music 2016, www.thebeingmusic.com