THANKSGIVING
Thanksgiving

[Marriage Records, www.marriagerecs.com]

MARATHON MEN
Blessings

[Chillifunk Records, www.chillifunk.com]

ALESSANDRA ROMBOLA
Urueńa

[Sillon, www.sofamusic.no/sillon]

CHESSIE
Dual Mode

[Lok Musik, www.lok-music.de]

ROBIN FOX & CLAYTON THOMAS
Substation

[Room 40, www.room40.org]

HAMMOCK
Kenotic
Stranded Under Endless Sky

[Hammock Music, www.hammockmusic.com]

VARIOUS ARTISTS
Boogybytes, Vol. 1 - Mixed by Kiki

[BPitch Control, www.bpitchcontrol.de]

TETSU INOUE
Yolo

[Din, www.din.org.uk]

DALE LLOYD
Semper

[Alluvial Recordings, www.alluvialrecordings.com / and/OR, www.and-oar.org]

ANTHONY GUERRA / NISHIDE TAKEHIRO
Scopa Possibilities

[TwoThousandAnd, www.twothousandand.com]

YUKO NEXUS6
Nexus6 Songbook

[Sonore, www.sonore.com]

At certain times of the year, the deluge of new records is so massive, it's next to impossible to get a handle on everything. This is precisely why this bunch of releases will get a mention - even if it's a short and sweet one.
Portland-based Adrian Orange has been recording as Thanksgiving for a number of years. "Thanksgiving" is a 3 LP release that also comes packaged with a CD-R. Humbled, barely uttered vocals, bits and pieces of shronky feedback and noise along with some really intelligent lyrics [check out "Will You Bear My Dream?"] make for an enjoyable though sometimes a tad overbearingly dour listen. Considering these are three distinct EPs, it's best if the listening experience is chopped and broken down into manageable sets in order to prevent the listening experience from becoming too challenging.

Marathon Men are two French producers. Now based in London, Freddy McQuinn and Simbad, along with a cast of dozen other players come out with a highly groovy full-length "Blessings". Full of spirited vocals, mellow beats and a feel of a fast-paced lounge, the record has this super-natural NATURAL feel. I imagine this is what soulful disco may sound like if it didn't go through a bloody hiatus. While not all its pieces fit [there is more sub-categories in this record than you can bare - funk, d'n'b, soul, pop, house] "Blessings" is still a highly moving record for the mind and the feet.
Italian flautist Alessandra Rombolá amazes the listener with her debut solo CD "Urueńa". Name of the title is taken from a tiny church in Spain where it was recorded. Don't expect your standard flute work from this artist. Rather, what you'll get in return is a half-an-hour study of details the flute can offer. Stretched out passages full of graceful, hyper-delicate blowing, along with utter concentration on the music at hand ensures this CD has many new musical facets to offer. Certain segments sound as if they were made by a herd of angry birds, while others feature light clicking percussion work. Sure, the recording is not an easy one to digest for fans of more standard jazz fare, but still this is a rewarding offering from an artist who I'm sure will be making a stunning breakthrough sometime in the near future.
Chessie was started by Stephen Gardner over a decade ago, while he was a member of Lorelei. Ben Bailes joined Stephen Gardner to make the band a duo. "Dual Mode" is a half an hour EP that is hauntingly gorgeous as it is disturbing in its own odd way. While this isn't an acoustic record in a pure sense [there's tons of scrongy electronica and fuzzy guitars found along the way], it still retains a very homey and claustrophobic feel. Then again, guitars rule and Chessie believe that just as you're getting a grip on their style, along comes a field-recording like lengthy piece like "3rd and K Pt. II ["K Tower" Basidium Remix]" that obliterates all your useless, preconceived notions. Isn't unpredictability supposed to be one of the signs of a great band?
Australian sound artist Robin Fox along with bassist Clayton Thomas get together to produce a swirl of an improvised fest on "Substation". Their lengthy collaboration features a nicely reverberating bass, which is then heavily altered by Robin Fox's sound processing. Check out the drone-inducing "Dust on the Diodes" and listen closely [very closely] to see if you can actually hear Clayton's bass ruminations underneath the steady heard of marimbas that act as a primary back-bone for the piece. In other places, emphasis is placed on "objects" [mallets? glass balls? found objects?]. The duo has already traveled to many interesting aural destinations and surely "Substation" is a great first stop to get acquainted with their work.
Hammock is two musicians - Marc Byrd and Andrew Thompson - who decided to produce their debut album "Kenotic" by letting various styles come together. Plenty of guitars, luscious landscapes and most of all, an all-encompassing warmth. These instrumental tracks remind me of ambient music one minute, while recalling the great [long lost?] instrumental band Pell Mell throughout. Gently rolling guitar music that recalls the state of these two musicians' moods. Were they writing this dream music during their sleepwalking sessions? Similar mood is captured on Hammock's most recent EP "Stranded Under Endless Sky". Gentle perusing sounds that nearly sit still, rather than running toward a goal. Great music for the car on a long trip or for your bedroom on a lonely, ominous night.
The problem with mix CDs is lacking a viable concept, the whole enterprise is bound to back fire. The loose concept of "Boogybytes, Vol. 1 - Mixed by Kiki" is there are hidden tracks within tracks. In fact instead of the 16 tracks listed in the index, there are actually 25 pieces within this compilation. Everything is layered on top of each other, but that doesn't mean it necessarily succeeds. In fact, other than the glitch and beat heavy grooves of the opening "Distant Gratification" by Fred Giannelli, the remainder of the mix sadly falls a bit flat. Other than the funky cover shot of Finnish Kiki [who mixed this CD], the music inside is rather too comfortable at being conforming.
Regarded as the master of ambient composition, Tetsu Inoue comes back with another fine solo release "Yolo". Packed with luminous, easy flowing sounds, the whole voyage moves along nicely, without any hindering, unnecessary noises or glitches. During the course of the voyage, distinct field sounds are heard. "Flow" in fact features some cricket sounds throughout, while "Super Nature" is made up of [what resembles] rain sounds and sounds of various unidentified creatures. Easy to swallow, "Yolo" is another great example a master musician at the peak of his craft.
Environmental recording artist Dale Lloyd knows the true meaning of a field recording. His latest release "Semper" sees him quietly reinventing his micro-tonal approach. In reality, this brief [33 minutes] work is about the delicate detail of the sound, rather than the abstract sound itself. Lloyd forces the listener to pay close attention to every minute click, every minute field recording he has assembled here. By using various sounds [electronic] and those that are found in the natural world [old coins, xylophone and various found objects], he surrounds our world with an all-encompassing aural experience. Without a hint of a doubt, "Semper" is music that pulls you in with a magnetic force.
Guitarist and electronics whiz Anthony Guerra joins multi-instrumentalist Nishide Takehiro for their first duo CD "Scopa Possibilities". Imagine having to sit through half-an-hour's worth of soft noise, while crackling fire sound encompasses your head. While some of the recording is deadly quiet [I mean - dead silence], the other part is filled to the brim with bursts of noise, high pitch phases of squeaky feedback and ear bursting sounds. Due to the surprise factor, this isn't necessarily an easy listen. Packaged in TwoThousandAnd's beautiful cardboard package, catch this CD quick, before the limited edition sells out.
Japanese born Yuko Nexus6 stumbled into music by accident when she used her Mac at work and learned some simple music software programs. In fact, her workplace music career got her fired from her day job, which opened up a whole new world for her. Her fifth album, "Nexus6 Songbook" is a project realized from the gut and the heart. Much improvisation occurs here, but at the same time, all of the pieces sound as if they were tightly composed. This is truly a music lover's songbook. Presenting a mish-mash of sounds from Hoagy Carmichael's "Lazy Bones" [which is put through the computer shredding machine], an over-the-radio aged version of Chopin's "La Chanson De L'Adieu", to a Japanese language version of "He's a Jolly Good Fellow", Yuko Nexus6 doesn't shy away from covering everything in sight. One of the highlights of the record is an elongated "Live" track, dating back to 2003. Simple samples and broken off patterns of Yuko's vocals create a massive wave of sound. The closer "Ringo No Ki No Shita De [In the Shade of the Old Apple Tree]" features a strangely twisted toy piano [or a modified organ - or a machinated, sampled piano?]. Half way through, Yuko Nexus6 starts to recite the lyrics in the most mechanical way possible; until the end that is, when she starts to get upset and starts to scream at the top of her lungs. True showmanship of a record.
- Tom Sekowski


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RECENZJE

+ Caliban - The Undying Darkness
+ Darzamat - Transkarpatia
+ John Zorn - '50 Anniversery Concert: Painkiller
+ Allen Ginsberg - New York Blues: Rags, Ballads & Harmonium Songs
+ Kenneth Patchen - Jazz in Canada
+ Sten Hanson - Text-Sound Gems & Trinkets
+ Ayuo - Aoi
+ Fushitsusha - Origin's Hesitation
+ Ms. John Soda - Notes And The Like
+ Readymade FC - Paradiso
+ Pulsarus - Digital Freejazz / Łoskot - Sun
+ Miwon - Pale Glitter
+ Maximum Joy - Unlimited 1979 - 1983
+ Water Lily - Dissdance / Lopazz/Bad Cop Bad Cop - Lasergun/Cube 1
+ Karol Schwarz All Stars - Greatest Hits
+ Jackson & His Computer Band - Smash
+ Isolee - Western Store
+ Johannes Heil - Freaks R Us
+ Dell - Flugel - Superstructure
+ Evan Parker Trio and Peter Brotzmann Trio - The Bishop's Move
+ Erast - Cyberpunk
+ Dictaphone - Vertigo II
+ Ed Davenport - Diminuendo
+ Creme De Menthe - The Impossibility Of Evolution In The Suburbs
+ Context Unrevelled
+ Banabila & Monoscope - Live Mix
+ Phillip Sollmann - Something Is Missing
+ Stereo Total - Discotheque
+ Miles Tilmann - Xenon
+ The Timeout Drawer - Alone

- - - - - - - - -

+ MASSACRE - Killing Time / SKELETON CREW - The Country of Blinds / Learn to Talk
+ MICHEL DONEDA - L'Élémentaire Sonore / Solo Las Planques
+ EXPLODING CUSTOMER - Live at Tampere Jazz Happening
+ LEM - Put a Lem in Your Pocket / APARTMENT - Apantgarde / KIWAKO KANEDA - Mountainbook
+ MICHAEL McGOLDRICK - Wired
+ STEPHEN FLINN / NOAH PHILLIPS DUO AND TRIO WITH TIM PERKINS - Square Circle
+ MICATONE - Nomad Songs
+ NEXT LIFE - Electric Violence
+ DELL + FLUGEL - Superstructure
+ K.K. NULL / CHRIS WATSON / Z'EV - Number One
+ OREN MARSHALL - Introduction to the Story of Spedy Sponda, Part One: In a Silent Room
>> THANKSGIVING - Thanksgiving / MARATHON MEN - Blessings / ALESSANDRA ROMBOLA - Urueńa / CHESSIE - Dual Mode / ROBIN FOX & CLAYTON THOMAS - Substation / HAMMOCK - Kenotic / Stranded Under Endless Sky / VARIOUS ARTISTS - Boogybytes, Vol. 1 - Mixed by Kiki / TETSU INOUE - Yolo / DALE LLOYD - Semper / ANTHONY GUERRA / NISHIDE TAKEHIRO - Scopa Possibilities / YUKO NEXUS6 - Nexus6 Songbook
+ MIKE LADD - Negrophilia / Mike Ladd Presents Father Divine
+ SPACEMEN 3 - Forged Prescriptions / SPECTRUM - Refractions - Thru The Rhythms of Time: 1989-1997
+ STEVE LEHMAN - Demian as Posthuman
+ THE BEAUTIFUL NEW BORN CHILDREN - Hey People! / SONS AND DAUGHTERS - The Repulsion Box / FIRE ENGINES - Codex Teenage Premonition / ORANGE JUICE - The Glasgow School
+ ALVIN LUCIER - Anthony Burr / Charles Curtis
+ HOWE GELB - 'Sno Angel Like You / ARIZONA AMP AND ALTERNATOR - Arizona Amp and Alternator
+ JIMMY EDGAR - Color Strip
+ 3/4HadBeenEliminated - 3/4HadBeenEliminated / 3/4HadBeenEliminated - A Year of the Aural Gauge Operation
+ GINO ZARDO - Walking East
+ RICHARD CHARTIER - Tracing

- - - - - - - - -

WYWIADY / RELACJE

+ Tajemnicza emocja - wywiad z Kostasem Georgakopulos [Progrram]