Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Portishead is band from Bristol, a city west of London, in which trip-hop music was born in the early 90's. Along with Tricky, Earthling, UNKLE, Massive Attack, Portishead gave birth to Trip-Hop music.
" The term trip hop was coined by music journalist Andy Pemberton in the June 1994 issue of UK magazine Mixmag to describe the hip hop instrumental "In/Flux", a 1993 single by DJ Shadow, and other similar tracks released on the Mo' Wax label and being played in London clubs at the time. "In/Flux", with its mixed up bpms, spoken word samples, strings, melodies, bizarre noises, prominent bass, and slow beats, gave the listener the impression they were on a musical trip, according to Pemberton. James Brendall termed the experience of trip-hop with the combination of "computers and dope" Wikipedia.
This album is sincerely one of the best trip-hop album ever made. Raw beats and oppressing scratches blend with Beth Gibbons's unique singing. Really dark from the first to the last song, its listen [with headphones please] will force you to penetrate into these obscure atmospheres or other gloomy ambiences. Some of this music will take you to the corner of a dirty street on a cold winter night and for only light the moon. The smoky alley you just got yourself in could be a place for which this music was made. Please dare stepping into this world.
Definitely a musical experience that you will not forget :)
Below one of the album's highlight. Turn your volume + bass up a little.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Snowy days are coming. It's about time to pick up a smooth jazz album. This is one of my first jazz album. It's what we could classify as modern jazz. Easy listening and melodic compositions though quite long. The songs usually extend around 6 minutes in creating some intricate and evolving soundscapes.
E.S.T stands for Esbjörn Svensson Trio was a Swedish jazz piano trio consisting of Esbjörn Svensson (piano), Dan Berglund (double bass) and Magnus Öström (drums). Actually, Pianist Esbjörn Svensson passed away recently, in June 2008, in a scuba diving accident.
I would advice this album to anyone really. I think it's an album that could be a good introduction to jazz in general.
E.S.T. - The well-wisher
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Some really interesting pictures of Berlin during the winter. I stumbled upon them randomly and I immediately like their style, minimalistic and complex at the same time. The smart use of colors and geometry in the frame give them some real depth. You can look at them for quite some time and hardly express what you love into them. Those pictures were shot by Matthias Heiderich. I would recommend you checkin out his other projects that are really interesting as well.
Talking about Berlin, I thought I could share some of the amazing music that has been recorded there.
My pick is Bowie. That's a great thing since I haven't shared anything from him yet and he's been one of my favorite musicians who got me a lot into German music actually. That's how I first heard of Brian Eno too.
Anyway, Bowie started working with Brian Eno in the 70s and recorded three albums that were highly influenced by the German music of the time - Krautrock and electronic music - . Those three albums, "Low", "Heroes" and "Lodger" make up this trilogy.
I chose only to share "Low" for now. You'll see what you think.
An album that is definitely interesting to check out. If you know Bowie it's interesting to see the turn that he took over those three albums. "Low" turns experimental halfway through with mostly instrumental tracks. The excellent "Speed of Life" and "Sound and Vision" on the first half of the album are some of the tracks that are not instrumental. Some of the soundscapes in this album are oppressing and will be hard to grasp at first. Definitely an album that requires many listens, like any experimental or avant-garde music album. One of those albums that you end up loving and you would never have thought so.
Sound and Vision
Sunday, November 7, 2010
A really good folk/rock album that came out in 2009 and was released under his name instead of his usual nickname Smog. Often mentioned as being one of the best albums of 2009, "Sometimes I wish We Were an Eagle" is a brilliant album by a talented songwriter.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
The film features Harvey Keitel as a pianist who also works for his loan shark father as a "collector". He is a conflicted soul, torn between his art, his loyalty to his father, his sexuality, and his past. [Wikipedia]
Really good movie which was readapted by Jacques Audiard in the also brilliant "De battre mon cœur s'est arrêté" ("The Beat That My Heart Skipped" in english) starring Romain Duris.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
It's been a long time since I first wanted to introduce Hipgnosis on my blog. Now that i figured out how to create a slideshow it's easier!
"Hipgnosis was a British art design group that specialized in creating cover art for the albums of rock musicians and bands, most notably Pink Floyd, The Pretty Things, UFO, 10cc, Bad Company, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Yes, The Alan Parsons Project, Genesis, ELO and XTC. Hipgnosis consisted primarily of Storm Thorgerson, Aubrey Powell, and later, Peter Christopherson. The group dissolved in 1983, though Thorgerson still works on album designs, and Powell works in video, most notably with The Who." [Wikipedia]
Indeed, Thorgerson has been working with Muse, Offspring or Audioslave the last couple years and still makes some amazing pieces. I got hooked by Hipgnosis's work right away because they designed covers of some of my favorite bands of the 70s.
However, what is truly interesting about Hipgnosis is that they gave music an image to which we could fuse the actual music to. The final record, LP at the time, ended up being a single piece of art including the cover, the music, the object. Try to imagine when in the 70s you would go buy a LP, which is a pretty big object by itself and you could actually stare at the cover for a long time and focus on details because of the important size. I wish I experienced that back in the day even though I kind of do since I started collecting LPs about 6 years ago.
Those guys were spending time to listen to the music first and then come up with an idea that would be inspired by the music itself. So knowing the music allows you to appreciate the creative process and inspiration they went through. It's fascinating.
Also, it's important to recall that in the seventies people wouldn't have access to technologies in order to create those images. Therefore, they would often come up with the craziest projects and ideas (ex: the Pink Floyd cover of A Momentary Lapse of Reason for which they brought tons of beds on the beach) in order to make their creativity come true. The result is astonishing. Those covers are truly the result of a boundless creativity and imagination and those guys truly gave rock music an image in shaping a certain iconography of their time. The Dark Side Of the Moon's cover is one of the most universal cover of all times.
Judging an album by its cover is wrong. However, wanting to listen to an album because of its cover is what happens when seeing Hipgnosis's work. And you would be amazed to see that it is a way to discover some of the most amazing and otherwise undiscovered music you'll ever listen to. I've done it a lot. Trust me.
The slideshow includes both works of Hipgnosis and Thorgerson after they split up.
Also I wanted to catch your attention on this one: those guys were creative and plus they had humor.
Monday, November 1, 2010
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Radiohead deserves its post. THose are the reissues of the studio albums coming with a second CD of outtakes, remixes, live versions. Really worth getting.
Everything in 256Kbs.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Anyway, cool album which is basically some latin tunes compiled by the Los Angeles-based station KCRW. However the whole album is really eclectic, going from electronic to acoustic.
The opening track is pretty damn good. Definitely recommended.
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
A few days ago was Rosh Hashanah, the new year in the Jewish calendar.
Anyway, that reminded me of an interesting jewish artist: Socalled. This is his last solo album to date. He also belongs to the band Abraham Inc. from which I uploaded an album a few days ago. More hip-hop oriented, this solo effort blends elements from Klezmer music [musical tradition of the Ashkenazic Jews of Eastern Europe] as well as funk and jazz. Socalled talks about the jewish culture from which he belongs and sing in many languages including Hebrew.
Pretty fun clip video
Also while I was looking for some video to put on here, I found out about this documentary about him and his music that should be out this year. Here is the preview it looks just great!
Thursday, September 9, 2010
This following introduction to this album is really interesting and sets all the prerequisites that you need to meet before you listen to this album. It end up being an exceptional experience. I also wanted to share this album for David, a long time friend, whose blog [clubmoustache] got me more interested in electronic music and especially its birth (to which this album greatly contributed).
" This is the kind of record that very few people know about, but it’s understatement to say that theyshould know about it. If you haven’t heard that record, I seriously doubt you should consider yourself a fan of electronic music, yet. Compared to its German luminaries such as Kraftwerk or Can, it’s just as historically important. Then we could say it’s quite underrated indeed. First, let’s mention that Manuel Göttsching was part of Ashra Tempel with Klaus Schulze, and they even made an album with the late Timothy Leary. He is one of the most important guitarists of the Kosmische Musik genre. He also participated in the Cosmic Jokers sessions. His style and technique influenced dozens of artists in the post-Eno ambient and new age scenes in the 1980s and 1990s. But let’s face it, even though that record is a classic and has influenced everyone in the Detroit techno area from Carl Craig to Derrick May, rarely will you sit still 58 minutes to listen to an entire record which consists of just one track. It takes time, in fact, it is time consuming. It also takes patience. If you don’t like stuff like Brian Eno or Tangerine dream, Steve Reich and minimalist music then this record is not made for you. But then again, you would miss on something which is quite a masterpiece. The first time, I heard it was in 1998 I think, close to 15 years after its release. Now on to 25 years after its original production, it has aged especially well. Sure, back then it was picked by one of the best DJ’s of all time in Larry Levan who used to mix it next to the Clash. But think about it : this record has been covered in 1989 by the Italian techno-house outfit Sueno Latino, it was covered by Basic channel,on their Basic reshape, and remixed by Paperclip people aka Carl Craig on his Remake uno EP. Most recently it was picked by LCD Soundsystem‘ on 45:33 a record that was inspired by E2 E4 both conceptually as seen on the artwork and musically with the duration of the song. Just another example of how many times it’s been named-checked, reworked and expanded countless times.
E2-E4, was released in 1984, and was the first solo recording album by Manuel Göttsching. The album itself consists of a minimalistic hour-long progressive electronic track that is subdivided into single tracks according to the stage of the song. The second half of the record is notable for Göttsching’s guitar playing. The album is named after the most popular opening chess move, 1. e4. Maybe its legendary status is due to the fact that as the story is sometimes told, Göttsching stopped in the studio, while touring with Klaus Schulze, and invented techno. In a concert mood, in december (that would put this record 30 years old ) of 1981, he entered his studio armed with only a korg synth and a guitar, his favorite asset. And then, he started playing. He improvised. But thanks for us, he decided to record the whole thing on the spur of the moment. And an hour of music was born. But he did not even intend to release it. After much reflections, doubts and afterthoughts, and only after the counsel of usual pal Schulze and especially three years later, he decides to publish the session. E2 E4, covered with a chessboard on cold and brown, sees the light and its light changes the course of history. E2 E4 is the most compelling argument that techno came from Germany. And even more so than any Kraftwerk album, anyway. Over a heavenly two-chord synth vamp and simple sequenced drum and bass, Göttsching’s played his guitar like a percussion instrument, creating music that defines the word hypnotic over the sixty minutes of the single track.
How do we explain musical genius ? We can’t. When it happens, it just happens. And nothing happens at random, this for both normal and special things. But only the special things happen by pure magic, or some strange astral combination, the dance in zero gravity between relevant things and transcendent randomness, that leads to improvisation. The ability to take a theme and stretch it out into an ever increasing artform is often unattainable. The ex-leader of Ashra, the kraut-deutsch guru Manuel Göttsching, did it a quarter century ago, and his ability came from live shows. But what’s E2 E4 ? For a human, the easiest opening move in chess. For a musician, the dream of life. A persistent pulse of dreamy synthethic geometries which proceeds to the nirvana escorted by a spastic beat and a guitar that never ceases to peak. A perfect loop, the loop by definition. Nevertheless it’s not a dance piece. But it’s impossible to speak of E2 E4 in terms of human technology, if you’ve got that melody in your head, it will never leave you. I will never grow tired of that record. Jeff Mills once said : some things are better left unexplained. I do agree with him. That is the case with E2 E4. " funkyjeff77, from http://funkyjeff77.wordpress.com/
I cut the song in multiple parts, corresponding to the different variations, and left the song itself (59 minutes),at the end. Enjoy!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Monday, August 23, 2010
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Velvet Underground - Venus in Furs
The Velvet Underground: Sweet Jane
The Velvet Underground - Oh! Sweet Nuthin'
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
Quicksilver Messenger Service belongs to the psychedelic rock scene of San Francisco in the 60s. Along with the Grateful Dead, Big Brother & The Holding Company, Jefferson Airplane, Santana.. etc
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
A movie about a current global issue. The movie's scope looks like being the story of how facebook got so big including all the privacy issues that it implied. However, I find it easy to make such a movie, knowing that most of the facebook users will rush into the theaters. I find it paradoxical to denounce a system that makes money on people's back in order to.. make money as well! We don't want to forget that a movie's primary purpose, especially today, is to make dough :)
Let's wait and download it later.
Talking about money and American cinema, I thought that 'Inception', Christopher Nolan's last movie, was brilliant.
I recommend watching 'Memento' and 'Insomnia', two movies that will show you that Nolan was already a great director before 'The Dark Knight'.