There is a tribal element to Arc's 2 long suites that feel somewhat like being stoned in Cologne in 1971. The trios of Aidan Baker, Christopher Kukiel, and Richard Baker return to the quiet with hushed tribal timbres, however, these ambiences are riveting in a way that that other ambiences are not, probably because the group does not think with an ambient attitude. This is the sound of mining midnight. In a universe where experimentalism is often just a nice way of saying "boring," hearing seasoned musicians actually craft something interesting sans computers is like having an orgasm. There really is no compare, except for maybe sneezing, which is Merzbow's department. Vinyl editions of 400 with the subscriber editions limited to 150 copies on 180 gram vinyl and custom made book bound sleeves and signed and numbered certificate.
For this release Aidan Baker (co-founder of Nadja and member of Arc), is aided by his brother, Richard Baker, on drums. Recorded in Toronto and Berlin, 'Smudging' includes six songs comprised of two long epic tracks, with guitar textures and hypnotic rhythm structures to create a beautiful and dreamy listening experience. The guitar drones succeed one another, alternating with more rhythmic and structured brackets. "Smudging" is a work that, both in the execution and in the structure of the six tracks that comprise it, represents another confirmation of the stylistic code reached by the eclectic Canadian musician, who's determined in his aim to drag the listener, with extreme elegance, into the multiple parallel worlds created by his unlimited sounds. Ltd x 400 copies.
Stepping outside of the Nadja context for the duration of two long meditative tunes, Aidan Baker pairs up with Idklang for a very nice albeit somewhat very improvised sounding and apparently "Twin Peaks"-inspired album. I am not familiar with the second musician's regular output, and can therefore only compare "In The Red Room" to Aidan Baker's past discography. There is less distortion this time around, but the same kind of slowly building atmospheres and gritty, emotional strings. Maybe not the one record I would recommend as an introduction to these artists or this genre of experimental guitar work, but still a very nice album.
Aidan Baker's The Confessional Tapes is another of his more song-oriented albums, though here drifting between slowcore, dreampop, abstract jazz, and glitchy electronica. Baker originally began working on this record in Toronto several years ago, but lost the audio files in a hard drive crash. Those files which were recoverable from the original recordings, corrupted and glitchy, ended up forming the backbone of the album, providing a fragmentary and abstract structure to the songs as Baker worked on them in his adoptive home of Berlin.
Christian Fennesz's 2001 album Endless Summer was a go-to album of electronic music for people who don’t necessarily listen to a lot of electronic music. For his new record, Fennesz has returned to both the label and the style that provided that breakthrough.
Divertissement is the third collaborative full length from minimalist composer William Basinski and sound artist Richard Chartier. The duo utilize electronics, piano, tape-loops and short wave radio to evoke a dense atmosphere suggesting hundreds of years of history rising up from the depths of a reverberating cathedral. Subtle, buried and intense murmurs of melody morph through this deeply consuming and slowly evolving composition in two parts.
'Wars Of The Roses', Ulver’s eighth album released originally in 2011, saw the band being highly influenced by progressive rock music, whilst also incorporating elements of ambient, post-rock, and spoken word.
Rather than drift off into irrelevance in the 21st century, the Orb have become sturdy and workmanlike. Moonbuilding is, incredibly, the Orb's 10th album in the new century, and it reminds you of what once made them great.
The widescreen melancholia of their 2012 debut, Quarter Turns Over A Living Line, gives way to an urgent and focussed futurism, in the shape of eight fiercely uptempo, minimal, meticulously crafted electro-acoustic rhythm tracks. The DNA of dub-techno, garage/grime and post-hardcore rock music spliced into sleek and predatory new forms.
On A Year With 13 Moons, producer Jefre Cantu-Ledesma, who is also a bandmate of Liz Harris (aka GROUPER) in the duo RAUM, locates a spot between cool remove and fever dreams. It's hard to decide if this is the year's most fucked up ambient album, or its most bucolic noise record.
Brian Eno's solo album, first created for an art installation, consists of four tracks spread across 75 minutes. It suggests that there's a reason Eno's name has become synonymous with "ambient" and why his thoughts on the music remain the gold standard.
This is Biosphere's first truly ambient album, and has a theme of cold, of mountains and glaciers and running water. Sounds of howling wind and creaking wood, although infrequently employed, create a chilling soundscape interrupted by sonorous but quietly suspenseful music.
This record pushes the idea of sharing a record to the extreme. Both sides start with a new song from each band, long songs (approx 12 min) which let both bands enough time to developp their own ambience full of intensity and melodic loops. These new songs are followed by collaboratives drones which prove that these two bands were made to work together and share a record. The atmosphere is dark but always full of melodies and progressions.
The idea for this collaboration was sparked after the three artists were confirmed for the first ever Garden of Drones Festival in Halle (Belgium). A mutual respect and kinship for each other fueled the idea of working together on a project. The festival seemed to be the perfect catalyst to trigger the artists into having their understanding of each others work resonate in a collaboration. Hence Tri Muerti was conceived.
DEATH is the first of two installment of the collaborative effort between thisquietarmy (Canada) & Yellow6 (UK), two of the most innovative guitarists in the current ambient scene. “VALLEY” is the 2nd part of this lonely journey across the desert. While the last track of “DEATH” left us wretched and drained on the ground, “Dunes”, the first track of “VALLEY”, picks up with a slow awakening from this state of comatose.
Unique mix of ambient, industrial, experimental trip hop, jazz and electronica: Formed in a dingy Melbourne warehouse at the turn of the century, Terminal Sound System began as a vehicle for Skye Klein, half of Relapse Records cult doom/noise duo HALO, to explore his interest in experimental electronic music and Dub.