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.
Sound In Silence is a small DIY record label based in Athens, Greece that has been releasing limited editions presented in collectible handmade packaging since 2006. Featured here are four of their most recent releases by moshimoss & stabilo, anthéne, bvdub, and (ghost). I also recommend browsing through the rest of their Bandcamp catalog where you’ll find gems by artists such as Wil Bolton, Caught in the Wake Forever, Good Weather for an Airstrike, and North Atlantic Drift.
Based in Montreal, Québec, Moderna Records is a recently founded label that has quickly established itself as a home for wonderful new voices in experimental and modern classical composition. Having introduced many listeners to artists such as Veronique Vaka, Ed Carlsen, and Tim Linghaus, they do it yet again with the debut solo album by Japanese composer & pianist Daigo Hanada. Written in Berlin and Tokyo over the course of a year, Ichiru is a collection of intimate vignettes recorded with only an upright piano, a pair of microphones and two hands.
The past six months has seen a small flurry of solo piano recordings from Akira Kosemura , a Tokyo-based recording artist and composer & sound producer for film, stage, and television. This travelogue features a quartet of releases, two from Kosemura’s own Schole Inc. label along a with a pair that find a fitting home on the prolific 1631 Recordings, each with its own unique character & charm.
Calmly transportive. Blissfully adrift. Hazy and translucent. A listening journey with four exceptional albums from around the globe that delve into the idyllic side of ambient and electronic music created by The Green Kingdom (USA), Chihei Hatakeyama (Japan), Warmth (Spain), and James Murray (UK).
Hakobune, aka Takahiro Yorifuji, uses layers of guitar to create his sonic landscapes. Originally from a small town in the Hyōgo Prefecture and now based in Tokyo, his immaculate drones are characterized by their wonderful sense of simplicity, harmony and balance – light and dark, coolness and warmth, opacity and translucency, introspection and extrospection. For a prime example of his more intimate work, seek out the gorgeous Seamless and Here on Patient Sounds, but his most recent release entitled Moraine turns outward for inspiration and matches the theme with some of his most expansive music yet.
Radio Sea is an entrancing new electroacoustic ambient excursion from Tokyo-based musician Kadzuki Ikegaya under the moniker Adzuki, a collection of ten exquisitely constructed tracks that serve as a tranquil meditation on the sea both literal and metaphorical.
“The noise which comes from the radio sometimes sounds like the sound of the sea”
No one freezes memories and life experiences into musical amber quite like Will Long. His recordings under the name Celer always have a context and back-story that is essential to full appreciation of the work and never more so than on his forthcoming album Two days and one night in which he retraces and re-imagines the journey a great uncle who drowned in 1984 off the coast of Tunisia while staying at the Hotel Amilcar.
“In 2015, I retraced his steps from Tunis to Hammamet. Set part in fiction and part in reality, Two Days and One Night is both a document of my own experience and a re-imagining of what my great uncle might have heard and experienced 31 years before. It’s a shame he didn’t see the burnt orange sunset swirling over the horizon as I did on my departing flight at the end of the second day, but then again, maybe he did.” – Will Long
A listening journey with four albums composed of intricate electroacoustic textures, field recordings, and emotional undercurrents. Immersed in these mild sonic abrasions and vivid soundscapes, the mind can exfoliate… Continue reading
Lucy Claire is a London based composer originally from the North East of England. She trained at London’s Royal College of Music and has collaborated with many filmmakers, choreographers and artists, but it is best known to me through her work released on This Is It Forever Records – the binaural modern classical soundscapes of Suite (2013) and Collaborations No.1 (2014) which was meant to launch a series of EPs and has just been joined by the second volume.
Collaborations No.2 features two alumni from the previous outing, singer/songwriter Alev Lenz, and violinist Marie Schreer (Mainly Two, The Gustalla Quartet, Sequoia Trio, Ensemble Nova Luce), and introduces vocalist Yuri Kono to the series The new record follows the template laid out by the first with each of these artists co-composing and performing on a sumptuous modern classical composition followed by a series of atmospheric reworks by electronic musicians which this time around include Tom Adams, Will Samson, ALMA (Pete Lambrou & Ciaran Morahan), and worriedaboutsatan (Gavin Miller & Thomas Ragsdale).
Dragon’s Eye Recordings is an imprint based in Los Angeles and curated by sound and visual artist Yann Novak. Originally founded in 1989 by Yann’s father Paul, the label has released over 70 editions in the fields of sound art and experimental music since being relaunched 2005 with a focus on electronic, electroacoustic, field recording, drone and acousmatic music and a well defined and elegant minimalist visual aesthetic for presenting them. This travelogue focuses on the most recent and highly recommended offerings created by Darren McClure, Miguel Isaza, Tobias Hellkvist, and Novak himself.
Flaming Pines label founder Kate Carr has developed a highly regarded and multi-faceted creative practice “centered on articulating the relationship between people and place through sound”. In addition to her own sound work, she has curated a variety of wonderful conceptual series, the latest of which has seemingly unlimited potential despite its ostensibly diminutive name – Tiny Portraits.
In Listening to Noise and Silence, Salomé Voeglin talks of soundscape compositions occupying a site ‘between preservation and invention’ – an attempt by the composer or field recordist to retain the essence of a site inevitably results via the processes of recording, composition and listening in the creation of somewhere new. Tiny Portraits asks each participant to dwell on these connections and disconnections between sound and place, representation and invention by starting somewhere small, somewhere overlooked or obscure, and to interrogate this site using sound. – Kate Carr