Categories
pop

Ella van der Woude – Sol Mineur

In two weeks the album Sol Piano by Ella van der Woude will be released by Snowstar Records. We know Ella for her more poppy electronics. She released an album as part of the band Houses in 2011 and made a cool triphop EP as ELLA in 2016.

Sol Piano is different: Ella recorded the album in her apartment in Amsterdam mainly using her piano. The result is abstract yet close, intimate yet distant.

The first teaser singles are beautiful. The video for the latest, ‘Sol Mineur’, is shot in Switzerland, her second home, and matches well with the serenity of the song. Looking very much forward to the whole album.

Sol Piano by Ella van der Woude will be released in a couple of weeks by Snowstar Records.

Categories
electronic

Arandel – InBach

Since its debut ten years ago the French project Arandel – swallow in a regional dialect – has released some interesting music floating between electronics, avant-garde and classical music.

This latest is definitely the weirdest: work by Johann Sebastian Bach is used as a basis for excursions into electronic pop music. Bach’s music has been (re)interpreted a lot, but not in the way Arandel is doing here.

The mysterious producer got access to some vintage instruments like a viola da gamba, an Erard square piano, a clavichord, and a 1940s ondioline proto-synth. With the help of a handful of musicians and 21th-century electronic filters, he managed to make an album that sounds like lush and open dream pop with a touch of Bach. Definitely worthwhile.

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InBach by Arandel will be released by InFiné later this month.

Categories
electronic

Oval – Scis

For nearly thirty years Markus Popp aka Oval is using external processes like glitch, software, hardware and AI to compose electronic music with.

Since his move from Cologne to Berlin, Popp seems to be even more open for generative influences, taking a step back from the production process. After the lovely Popp album releases in 2016 that was influenced by club music, he turned back to his software and more nerdy stuff, gave workshops in algorithmic production and did a solo exhibition in London. Now he is back with new music.

The results are a new album Scis and ep Eksploio, both filled with electronic experiments that partly go back to the open and experimental periods of Oval in the late nineties and early 2000s. From dreamy to rough, playful to rigid. It’s all on there and laced with that sound that is so typical for Oval, no other non-Oval would be able to do that. Welcome back Markus!

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Scis by Oval is released on Thrill Jockey Records.

Categories
electronic

Vladislav Delay – Raajat

Sasu Ripatti is like King Midas: everything he touches turns into gold. A couple of years ago he left Berlin for a small island in the Baltic Sea. “There is a lot of nature here and not many people. I need that after six years of living in a city that never sleeps”, Ripatti told me by mail. He was disappointed in electric dance music becoming a product that everybody could make.

As Vladislav Delay he was so active that Ripatti got tired of house, 4/4 beats and ambient. The fresh air on Hailuoto, and his travels to the wilderness above the arctic circle and tree lines, has been good for him: after five years there will be a new album as Vladislav Delay: Rakka. The first track he shares, ‘Raajat’, is the perfect combination between sultry ambient and hectic industrial-like breakbeat stuff.

Rakka by Vladislav Delay will be released on Cosmo Rhythmatic/WARP.

Categories
rock

Dead Neanderthals – Mankind

The leaders of the New Wave of Dutch Heavy Jazz (NWoDHJ) movement released a couple of tracks on Bandcamp in 2019.

‘Mankind’ is the last one. Dead Neanderthals sound there like those psychedelic drone bands at the end of the 1980s and early 1990s. Think Loop’s A Gilded Eternity meets Monster Magnet’s Tab.

The White Noise Studio in Winterswijk must have looked like a desert when Ethan Bokma, Otto Kokke and René Aquarius recorded this nearly 14-minute masterpiece.

Maybe because I’m re-reading the work of Timothy Morton, I find ‘Mankind’ to be an excellent soundtrack for the alienating effect that thinking of nature as the strange stranger has on me.

‘While crossing the desert by night, the neon lights of decades of psychedelic history catch up and try to seduce us with lush dancing and promises of alternative realities to strange to comprehend. The strange stranger is here.’

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