on life, music etc beyond mainstream

2013 12 Sep

Fünfte Auslese (2013)

von: Michael Engelbrecht Filed under: Blog | TB | Tags:  | 8 Comments


1) Bill Callahan: Dream River – *****

2) Arve Henriksen: Places of Worship – **** 1/2

3) Jan Bang: Narrative From The Subtropics – **** 1/2

4) Dysnomia: Dawn of Midi – ****1/2

6) Sleaford Mods: Austerity Dogs – **** 1/2

5) Carla Bley: Trios – **** 

7) Ralph Towner / Wolfgang Muthspiel / Slava Grigoryan: Travel Guide – ****

8) Stephan Mathieu: The Falling Rocket – ****

9) Townes Van Zandt: High, Low and In Between – **** (buried treasure back)

10) Califone: Stitches –  ****

11) S.O.S. (J. Surman, M. Osborne, A. Skidmore): Looking for the Next One – **** (buried treasure back)

12) Bob Dylan: Another Self Portrait – **** (buried treasure back) 

12 excellent albums, incl. Americana (Callahan, Califone, Van Zandt, Dylan), ECM at its most sublime, Norwegian Food (Bang, Henriksen) etc. Bang’s new release is out now on Jazzland Records (go there for orders!), Henriksen’s one available online via Rune Grammofon’s website), „Places of Worship“ will be in European shops at the end  of October. Both albums (cd- and vinyl-formats, thanks for that!) are melodic and experimental at the same time, repeated listening will reveal that the angel is in the details. The most surprising record here (in its post-punk-comedy stylings and its aggressive humour) comes from The Nottingham duo Sleaford Mods – beware of the dogs! The first albums of the unforgettable Townes van Zandt are now re-released on viny and real classics of their genre. I don’t like the word re-release so much and do replace it here with „buried treasure back“. Gregor is right in his comment, some of these records are so new they nearly still don’t exist. The good news: no one can yet bury them. Stephan Mathieu’s „The Falling Record“ is a real „burner“. Mathieu is part of Sylvian’s dark and strangely uplifting „The Kilowatt Hour“-Trio, and he wanted to give his vinyl edition to David, but missed his departure from the hotel, so, by chance, Mr. Sylvian’s copy – brilliant press quality – ended up in my bag.


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  1. Gregor:

    Eine Carla Bley-Platte einmal nicht bei WATT erschienen, sondern bei ECM, das ist schon etwas Außergewöhnliches. Dieses Platte ist aber auch ganz besonders gut. Diese Stücke nochmal ganz neu hören, das ist schon was. Eine CD für die Jahres-Top 20 auf jeden Fall. Ansonsten machst du deine Leser, lieber Michael, einmal mehr neidisch, denn, über was du schon alles verfügen kannst und hören kannst, davon können wir Otto-Normal-Verbraucher nur träumen. Die Jan-Bang-CD ist ja noch nicht einmal in den Katalogen der zwei verdächtigen Online-Händler …

  2. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Yep. siehe gerade zugefügten Text, in schwarzen Lettern, Gregor.

    artist arve henriksen
    title places of worship
    label rune grammofon
    distribution cargo records germany
    release date 25.10.2013 (germany, switzerland & austria)
    Online: now!!!
    format RCD 2147 / RLP 3147

  3. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Boomkat on The Falling Rocket:

    **Breathtaking electro-acoustic compositions and building drones – highly recommended** „“The Falling Rocket“ is Stephan Mathieu’s first full-length album for Dekorder after releasing two highly-acclaimed 10″ singles for the label in 2011 and 2009. It follows a series of recent collaborative works with Robert Hampson (in the reformed Main on Editions Mego), David Sylvain, Tashi Wada and the Smog songbook „Palimpsest“ with Sylvain Chauveau on his own Schwebung imprint. Here, Mathieu uses a similar setup as in Main, performing realtime arrangements on the Farfisa VIP 233 organ, mechanical gramophone, a Hohner Electronium and Radio, with the addition of Caro Mikalef’s ebowed Phonoharp on one track. The recordings are densely layered into massive, seemingly liquid clusters of pure sound with the original instruments’ voices reduced to a vague afterglow. At times they’re not unlike the overtone-rich Walls Of Sound of Glenn Branca and Phill Niblock, with ghost choirs appearing out of nowhere. Tracks like „Teide 1“ are among the most roaring and brute pieces Mathieu has ever recorded but there’s also an almost pastoral quietness in tracks like „Deneb“ and the album as a whole is one of his most accomplished works. Even though Mathieu uses tone clusters rather than conventional melodies there’s still a rich harmonic and hallucinatory quality inherent to his compositions. This is true cosmic music without the capital K.“

  4. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Gregor, mit Carla hast du natürlich so recht. Wann habe ich etwa Vashkar zum ersten Mal gehört, auf einer Gary Burton- oder Ralph Towner-Platte aus den Siebzigern … Sie hat einige Ohrwürmer komponiert.

    Vor ewigen Zeiten las ich mal ein Interview ihr, und was sei, sagte sie, das grossartigste Album aller Zeiten?


    Sgt. Pepper. Die Lady hat es drauf :) ich lernte sie nur kurz mal kennen, vorm Chelsea Hotel in Köln, kleines Gespräch mit Swallow unf ihr über Kölner Restaurants: ein liebenswertes Paar.

  5. Michael Engelbrecht:

    Und wenn wir schon bei ECM sind, nimm dir die Travel Guide aus dem Plattenschrank: allerfeinstes Album! Wolfgang Muthspiels erster Auftritt bei Manfred Eicher, Ich habe gerade ein kleines Interview mit ihm vorbereitet und bin auf seine Antworten gespannt.

    Aber hüte dich vor Rypdal mit dem Hilliard Ensemble. Gruselig verquast. Hochkunstblödsinn, das Pendant zum OnkelGrooveFunk des penetranten Nils Landgren.

  6. R3c.Kid:

    „Trios is the virtuosity of restraint personified and is played with a breeziness that speaks of immense experience and shared knowledge. The music enacts a logical, astute progression—from gas to liquid to solid—that is so open one can lie down and float comfortably into its spell. It’s a level of comfort and freedom that only the most heartfelt journeying can bring, and its first step touches earth the moment you press PLAY.“

  7. Michael Engelbrecht:


  8. Michael Engelbrecht:

    On Stitches:

    Unassuming, even uneventful at first, you’ll soon find the melodies of, for example, the stark campfire folk lullaby ‘Movie Music Kills a Kiss’ – little more than an absentmindedly strummed guitar, a few floating piano chords and Rutili’s downbeat recital about, amongst other things, ghosts emerging from darkroom chemicals – stuck on endless repeat in your internal jukebox.

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