May 17, 2006

Joanna Newsom – The Milk-Eyed Mender

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 10:43 am

Joanna Newsom – The Milk-Eyed Mender Harpist/pianist Joanna Newsom comes from a very musical family; both of her parents, sister and brother play musical instruments. Joanna started playing harp at the early age of seven. The Milk-Eyed Mender (2004) is actually her third album. Joanna previously self released two albums: Walnut Whales (2002) and Yarn an Glue (2003). Joanna also worked on many different side projects and she still actively is a member of rock/indie band The Pleased where she plays on keyboards.

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The Strokes - First Impressions of Earth

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 9:50 am

The Strokes - First Impressions of EarthImpatiently awaited album number three by New Yorkers The Strokes First Impressions of Earth was one of the first albums released in early 2006.
The standard based on successful previous two releases “Is This It” (2001) and “Room on Fire” (2003) was set very high as well as expectations from listeners.
“First Impressions of Earth” starts out strong, with usual catchy melodies alas The Strokes, juicy rhythms and Casablancas “tired” vocals. First half of the album gets you all excited and puts you in rock’n’roll mood. There are few excellent and very catchy tracks on this album such as “Juicebox”, “Ask Me Anything” or “Razorblade”.

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May 11, 2006

Mogwai - Mr.Beast

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 9:19 am

Mogwai - Mr. BeastScottish Mogwai are back again with their latest release Mr Beast (2006). The opener “Auto Rock” is a warm piano based track that keeps on building up until it explodes to a heavy super intense track two: “Glasgow Mega-Snake” - a pure heaven of squealing guitars and electric noise.
We calm down with the “Acid Food”, an electronic beat driven track with a bit of a singing and a very “country” sounding slide guitar.
The rest of the album is a mixture of similar moods. The heavier tracks on this Mr. Beast album: “Travel Is Dangerous” or the closing track “Were No Here” are definitely one of the most intense pieces Mogwai has ever recorded.

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April 18, 2006

DNTEL - Life Is Full of Possibilities

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 8:41 am

DNTEL - Life is Full of Possibilities
DNTEL is a one man project based around genius Jimmy Tamborello.
Life Is Full of Possibilities (2001) is a beautiful bubbly collage of mainly ambient electronic tracks. It would make a perfect score music for a dream.

From musicians contributing on this album it is definitely worth mentioning Chris Gunst (Beachwood Sparks, ex-Strictly Ballroom), Rachel Haden (That Dog) and Benjamin Gibbard (Death Cab for Cutie), among the others.

Tamborello did a fantastic sample editing job. The way the songs are structured and put together is simply genius. Quirky beats, loads of clicking and ticking but surprisingly everything fits perfectly.

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March 8, 2006

Editors - The Back Room

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 8:38 am

Editors - The Back Room
The impatiently awaited debut album of Editors - The Back Room (2005) is finally out. Starting out in Birmingham, Editors became darlings of the U.K. press immediately after release of their first singles and intense live performances. The direction of the album is obvious from the very first beats. Bands setup consists of vocals, two guitars, bass and drums.
One can easily recognize bits of Interpol, Joy Division or even Echo and the Bunnymen.

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February 21, 2006

Emiliana Torrini - Fisherman’s Woman

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 12:07 am

Emiliana Torrini - Fisherman's Woman
Emiliana Torrini is of Italian and Icelandic origin. Her first album Love in the Time of Science 2000 was produced by Roland Orzabal of Tears for Fears and sounded very electronic and Björk-ish. Her second release Fisherman’s Woman (2005) is mainly acoustic. It sounds very warm and intimate; it makes you imagine Emiliana being a butterfly or a beautifully fragile fairy. Most of the songs are based on acoustic guitar here and there accompanied by piano and minimal percussion. It is mainly Emiliana Torrini’s childish voice that is the biggest drawing point of the album.

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February 20, 2006

Arab Strap - The Last Romance

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 9:57 pm

Arab Strap - The Last Romance
Arab Strap was formed in 1995 in Scotland by vocalist Aidan Moffat and multi-instrumentalist Malcolm Middleton. The Last Romance is I believe their eight full length album. If you’re familiar with their earlier releases you call up a very depressive, sad and beautiful music stripped down to a simple drum machine arrangements accompanied by acoustic guitar and Moffat’s tired vocals. Oh and those lyrics! Very pornographic, but in Arab Strap’s case, it is not necessarily a bad thing… The melodies are usually very catchy after few listenings.

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February 10, 2006

The Matthew Herbert Big Band - Goodbye Swingtime

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 8:30 am

The Matthew Herbert Big Band - Goodbye Swingtime
I seriously had no idea of The Matthew Herbert Big Band’s music until I got their CD Goodbye Swingtime (2003). What waited for me was a very pleasant surprise.

Matthew Herbert has an early teenager experience as a keyboard player in Glenn Miller swing tribute band and since then he continued experimenting with different sounds and electronic gadgets in a context of dance music.

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February 6, 2006

Sigur Ros - Ba Ba Ti Ki Di Do

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 12:57 am

Sigur Ros - Ba Ba Ti Ki Di Do
Icelanders Sigur Ros are here again with their EP named Ba Ba Ti Ki Di Do. It is actually a single 20 minute ambient song broken up into three parts. This EP has been written as a composition for Merce Cunningham’s dance piece “Split Sides”.

As usually Sigur Ros chose experimental approach for this recording. As instruments they used piano, music box, miked-up ballet shoes and electronic playback.

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February 1, 2006

Diamanda Galas – La Serpenta Canta

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 10:05 pm

Diamanda Galas - La Serpenta Canta
La Serpenta Canta is a double CD collection of blues songs in Diamanda Galas’ dark interpretation recorded live in 2001-2002 all over the world. (Portugal, New York, Belgium, Canada, Australia..)

Majority of the songs are either traditionals or written by a famous blues names such as John Lee Hooker, Hank Williams or David Hill.
The quality of her interpretations is mind blowing; each song from Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” to Hawkins’ “I Put a Spell on You” and John Lee Hookers “Burning Hell” sounds like it was designed to her voice.
There is also a version on “Baby’s Insane” track which first appeared on her collaboration with John Paul Jones (ex Led Zeppelin), The Sporting Life 1994.

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