The techno fever continues this month with a killer debut from youAND:THEMACHINES, aka Martin Müller of youANDme. Behind was released in June by Ornaments Records in three formats: CD, 3LP, and hand-painted, special edition 3LP. It is only the fifth full length from Ornaments. Two of the other four were compilations put together by Luke Hess and youANDme, so this is a special occasion. Müller mixes house, dub, and various other strands of techno together.
According to this interview, he uses nothing but analog equipment to do it and prefers creating his own sounds to using samples. I can hear that in the album’s production and in the way Müller builds his songs. He emphasizes texture and density as much as club-worthy rhythms and he shies away from conspicuous melodic themes. He also matches vocal contributions to the tonal color of his instruments and tosses ambient stretches of noise between dance tracks. I like it enough to get past those goofy house vocals, which together constitute the weakest part of the album. Though I’ll admit one or two of those songs have grown on me.
I’m almost certain the hand-painted edition is already sold out (it was limited to just 333 copies) but the CD and LP can still be found online and at certain record shops around the US. So don’t puss out and download it from some blog. Go find a copy, or at least buy the MP3s.
I finally got my hands on some of the new Erstwhile titles last month too. I plan on getting reviews up as soon as possible, but my review writing has slowed down recently due to other writing projects.
About this time of year, certain records solidify as my favorites so far, but there’s been such a glut of great new records that nothing’s become concrete for me. Only a few records carried over from last month, and I can’t decide which record among the three or four I like most is “the best.” So I want bother with a mid-year list or best of.
As always, formats posted are the ones I own. Others may be available. If you like any of the samples I link to, please buy the album. You can find numerous retailers carrying these titles at the bottom of this page.
- youAND:THEMACHINES, Behind on ORNAMENTS (CD)
- Every review I can find of this is in German. I’ll try to write an English one soon.
- Listen to a 27 minute preview on Soundcloud.
- Aaron Dilloway, Modern Jester on HANSON RECORDS (CD)
- Anonymous, Inside the Shadow on MACHU PICCHU (LP)
- Aoki Takamasa, RV8 on RASTER-NOTON (CD)
- Robert Ashley, Automatic Writing on LOVELY MUSIC, LTD. (CD)
- Some Wiki info on Robert Ashley and Lovely Music.
- Listen to “Automatic Writing” (a shorter version) on Youtube. Absolutely brilliant stuff.
- Steven Stapleton from Nurse with Wound is a fan.
- And “Purposeful Lady Slow Afternoon” is one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever heard.
- Read about it here (Waggish) and here (The Village Voice).
- György Ligeti, Continuum… on WERGO (CD)
- This disc also contains Zehn Stücke für Bläserquintett, Artikulation, Glissandi, Etüden für Orgel, and Volumina für Orgel
- You can listen to “Artikulation” by watching this video, which syncs the music with Rainer Wehinger’s graphical score.
- Plastikman, Kompilation on MINUS/PLASTIKPRODUKT (CD)
- Keith Rowe/Graham Lambkin, Making A on ERSTWHILE (CD)
- Various Artists, Spiritual Jazz Volume 4 on JAZZMAN (2CD)
- An outstanding double disc collection featuring Sun Ra, Eric Dolphy, Don Cherry, Noah Howard, Sahib Shihab, and many others. Subtitled Americans in Europe, all recorded between 1963 and 1979
- a review, with samples, from Turntable Lab
- and a glowing review from the Tokyo Jazz Notes blog.
- “The Call,” by Sahib Shihab, on Youtube.