Sound Impression: A Certain Grief by øjeRum [Shimmering Moods]

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As the polar vortex plunges the northern hemisphere into a deep freeze it seems the right time to visit A Certain Grief, the latest opus from Danish collage artist and musician Paw Grabowski aka øjeRum. It is an album that was literally recorded with gloved hands in the cold as he explains himself:

“All sounds are recorded at my girlfriends parents house. They live remote in the country side and have a really old pump organ in the living room. It’s a really old house and in winter they only heat up this room for special occasions. I recorded this two winters ago in freezing cold, with gloves on and candle light. All background sounds are the actual sounds that were in the house while recording; the creaking chair, the crackling and pumping of the organ, the everyday noises of the family talking and working in the kitchen next door. “Paw Grabowski

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Stilhedens Strømmen I Fuglenes Blod by øjeRum [KrysaliSound]

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Danish collage artist & musician Paw Grabowski aka øjeRum made his first appearance on KrysaliSound with one of the standout EPs of last year, a reissue of his alternate soundtrack to Chris Marker’s 1962 time travel film La Jetée entitled He remembers there were gardens. He returns with an encore reissue of another øjeRum long form piece, albeit a more pastoral one. Stilhedens Strømmen I Fuglenes Blod is a 30-minute suite of haunting acoustic guitar motifs, gossamer textures, and percussive chimes as delicate as the hollow bones of a tiny bird.

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Sound Impression: Sacred Groves by Rime Trails [Shimmering Moods]

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Some artists prefer to work under a cloak of anonymity and let their music forge its own identity, and so it is with Rime Trails, an ambient music project based in Denmark. Over the past few years that identity has emerged as one associated with contemplative soundscapes rich in textural elements and reflective of natural surroundings. Given the Scandinavian setting, it is not surprising to find an abundance of wintry themes, but the latest offering is music for another season. Sacred Groves is “music for springtime in eight parts” that was recorded between April and September of 2016.

Crafted from various unnamed instruments and synthesizers, each track is a verdant reverie and an evocation of mystery and contemplation in equal measure. The mood is cloistered and meditative while the sounds wind their way through wooded paths wrapped in tendrils and bathed in shifting light.  When the din and clamor of the world becomes too much, you might find this is just the sanctuary you crave. 

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Travelogue 2016.04.21: Spotlight on Shimmering Moods Records

Shimmering Moods is a label based in Amsterdam that has already had a fruitful 2017 with a number of excellent limited edition CD releases and quite an international roster of artists. Featured here are recent works by Andrew Tasselmyer (USA), Snufmumriko (Sweden) , Rime Trails (Denmark), and Gallery Six (Japan). Also highly recommended are two albums featured on our 2016 year-in-review – Radio Sea’ by Adzuki and ‘Mothers Garden’ by Å Asher-Yates, a brand new reissue of ‘Naar Vi Vaagner’ by øjeRum, and a pair of works by Dimitar Dodovski, ‘Derive’ (2016) and ‘In Every Direction’ (2015). All releases can be found here on their Bandcamp site

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Through a musical lens: øjeRum – He remembers there were gardens [KrysaliSound]

Originally released on cassette in 2013, Italian label KrysaliSound has remastered and reissued a mesmerizing long form composition by Danish collage artist & musician Paw Grabowski under his artistic pseudonym of øjeRum. An undulating, hypnagogic organ-based drone, He remembers there were gardens was conceived as an alternate soundtrack to the 1962 “photo-roman” (photo-novel) La Jetée by Chris Marker which is still recognized as a unique and highly influential experimental cinematic work

The film, presented in a series of stills, paints a dystopian vision of post-apocalyptic Paris where survivors live underground below the galleries of the Palais de Chaillot. Its protagonist is a man who is held captive and forced to travel time in a quest to find a source of energy to regenerate a decimated society. The man is chosen because of the power of his obsession with the past, specifically the allure of a fragmented, pre-war memory of a woman on the observation platform (“the jetty”) at Orly Airport and a tragic incident that occurs there which becomes the focal point of the story’s haunting denouement.

“Those familiar with the film with have no difficulty in recalling the flashes of a destroyed world, the status of the museum, and the moment on the platform. Even if you haven’t seen the film, the breathing of Grabowski’s organ will conjure similar images and moments. It fluctuates between the drifts and falls and the throb and hum of a person lost in time and place.” – KrysaliSound

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Ed Carlsen – The Journey Tapes [Moderna Records]

After nearly 20 years of playing guitar and covering other people’s music, Ed Carlsen recently started down a new path of pursuing his own compositions while teaching himself the piano as well as exploring the world of sound design. These new directions combined with the inspiration of the nearby landscape of Denmark’s Ravnholm Forest have culminated in his debut album The Journey Tapes, a loosely conceptual modern classical record with a cinematic bent and discrete forays into the territories of electronica & pop.

“The concept is deeply personal in nature, marking important stages of an individual’s growth, from childhood to maturity passing through darker moments of insecurity. The concept moves from Close to Far, white to black (with grey in between), child to adult, or Caged to Free.” – Ed Carlsen

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Sound Impression: øjeRum – Væv [Eilean Rec.]

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A glistening gossamer web spun from reminiscence and longing. The warp and weft of memory woven into a translucent sonic tapestry. A collage of frozen time and faded beauty. All of these are suggested by both the title and music of Væv, the latest work of Copenhagen-based musician and collage artist Paw Grabowski under the moniker of øjeRum (the word væv, rooted in Old Norse, can be translated as tissue, loom, web,  or weave).

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Video Premiere: “Ghost Town” from ‘Dust Bowl’ by Rodeo

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When I was very young and at the mercy of my parent’s taste in movies & music, I recall one of the first records I ever heard that lit me up and made me want to listen over & over was Enrico Morricone’s soundtrack to ‘The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly ‘ (and, yes, I am talking about the original vinyl release in 1967). In the passing of years I had forgotten the thrill of first hearing that exotic and playful ‘spaghetti western’ motif until it was rekindled by the release of Dust Bowl by Rodeo, a project conceived by a quartet of Danish musicians – René González Schelbeck (aka Western Skies Motel), Jesper Bugge Kold (aka Tonelab), Jakob Westergaard and René Thorny (aka xolsen). 

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PREMIERE: “Falling Leaves” by Western Skies Motel

Settlers Vinyl Photo 2Last year the music of Western Skies Motel found its way from Denmark to all corners of the globe. The artist saw his music released on labels based in Poland (Prism, on Preserved Sound) and Australia  (Buried and Resurfaced, on Twice Removed) while the raw material of a third album called Settlers made its way to American Southwest leading to its forthcoming multi-format release in April on Lost Tribe Sound.

In the dry desert of Arizona that Lost Tribe Sound calls home, a letter is received from guitarist René Gonzàlez Schelbeck who’s eager to share a collection of intimately composed songs, titled Settlers. Upon listening, we are immediately enthralled. There’s a timeworn, arid, and almost badlands quality to Schelbeck’s hypnotic, cyclical guitar style. It seems to perfectly capture the lonely, barren landscape of the American West… – Ryan Keane (Lost Tribe Sound)

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