@@@ Andre Bratten: Silvester Anfang (Smalltown Supersound, 2020) A slate of electronic music today off last week’s All Music notable release email. Bratten’s 2019 record made my best of year list so he automatically earns a peep on this release. This is from a 52 minute 5 track record that is dominated by three 10+ minute pieces and this track is one of those big bangers. 18 minutes! It opens beat-less and kinda cosmically amorphous with lots of delayed deep space clicks and other. A beat starts to emerge from all the synth clouds — not a typical beat but it’s a beat that starts to structure the tune. It’s an interesting blend here — a tad dark but not overly so, rhythmic but strangely so. It sounds like he’s got a step sequencer that’s programmed to insert effects into the material. A small drum machine beat is starting down below the mix and I predict it will grow in the tune’s second half. It does become a steady beat but the whole track remains mired (not in a bad way) in a dub delayed atmosphere with lots of thick middle of the earth type sounds. It all fades to a combination mechanical hum/insect buzz with about three minutes to go. I don’t like it as much as I liked his record last year but I like it.
@@@ Nicolas Bougaieff: Thalassophobia (Mute, 2020) Clocking at almost 6.5 minutes this is short compared to Bratten’s monster shot. The tempo here is mo brisk with some percussive synth hits that go with pounding kick drum. Followed by the classic industrial hi hat and an arpeggiated (I think) synth throwing off single notes, all building the energy and frequencies in the mix. It all builds to an amorphous high frequency breakdown that leads into a new section. Nice transition there to a a mix of rhythms dominated by an occasional exhalatious release type sound before the kick and the arpeggiator returns and it goes kraut techno again. I appreciate the strength of the sounds and the focus of the arrangement, this is no sloppy ass throw together and if duder was high it was high on something focus enhancing. I like the end where he starts breaking the straight rhythm which gives it more dimension and I wish that going against the straightness of it had occurred much earlier but I’m really feeling the end of the track. More than solid track. If this guy got straight to the rhythmic collisions I would be on this like stink on a monkey but he takes a bit of time to get there. Great sounds.
@@@ Laurence Pike: Nero (Leaf Label, 2020) This is a different sort of electronic music as a drummer/composer takes his solo behavior and creates soundscapes over his (most likely) looped beats. This track is genre in between, a bit rocky, a tad jazz like, and there’s a shaker! The shaker, the cowbell’s ugly cousin. Why no cowbell? I’m feeling, as a person who listens to a fairly large ass amount of electronic music that these ambiences could use a bit of work to garner more interest. More movement besides the movement of the loops. Decent beginning ideas, and I enjoy the drumming, but a few more steps forward is what my ears hear. I see this slotted as jazz on Apple Music and I get that but I don’t get it at the same time. It’s very tight to my ears and I appreciate the looseness of some jazz. I’m not in charge of the definitions here, just sayin’.
@@@ Ellen Allien: Confusion (BpControl, 2020) A quick and cutting techno track from a European female musician. Comes out straight as an arrow with no love for the space between the notes and it grooves mercilessly with a vocoder low in the mix for the first bit and then I’m guessing it’s going to explode into a different dancefloor flavor. Yeah, the hi hats came in to go with the sci fi movie bass bounce. I think this would drive a high person straight into the insane asylum, there’s no hint of a break, and it makes a liar out of me as right on time there’s a slight decrease in the rhythmic energy while the bass continues its thing. Super high energy and I could use a bit more funk.
YTD recordings listened to: 588
Good music, not list worthy: 298
Not good music: 261
Honorable Mentions: 0
Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Luther Dickinson, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Satoko Fuji, Moken, Juan Atkins, Lantern, Twin Peaks, Djelimady Tounkara, The Oh Sees, Denny Zeitlin, MILF, Unfun, De La Soul, Carl Sagan’s Skate Shoes, Noname, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, RAM, Fiver, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Portal, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Barro, Daniel Khan, Tallawit Timbouctou, Sumac, Tropical Fuck Storm, Harriet Tubman, Ammar 808, Anais Maviel, Chaka Khan, Pom Poko, Fried Egg, Tarek Atoui, Saicobab, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Mariachi El Bronx, Pour Me a Grog, Sudan Archives, Lakou Mizik, Moodymann, Pharmakon, Alefa Madagascar, Janjao, Luge, Wiki, Mick Jenkins, Jeremiah Jae, Fera, Gambian Griot Kora Duets, Drama, Beatrice Dillon, Mass Worship, mmmonika, Les Deuxluxes, Tony Allen, Fra Fra, Nihiloxica, Hailu Mergia, Pokey LaFarge, Nico Gomez, Nohe and Sus Santos, schroothoop, Tiny Bit of Giant’s Blood, Pole, Naeem, Mekons, Santrofi, DJ Nigga Fox, Flor do Toloache, Alexander Hawkins/Tomeka Reid, STORMLIGHT, Venomous Concept, Chezidek