voidassembly progenitrix v∞, 16 November 2018


struc­ture, tex­ture, move­ment

elec­tron­ics, synth, post-rock, jazz, beats, house, avant­garde, musique con­crète

Art Blakey’s Jazz Mes­sen­gers with Thel­o­ni­ous Monk (1958, Atlantic)

A swinging col­lec­tion of (mostly) Monk com­pos­i­tions, with Blakey and his Mes­sen­gers mak­ing sure the rhythm is tight as can be.

astval­dur (Ástval­dur Axel Þóris­son) dropped some amaz­ing dark min­imal techno this year on Cor­rel­a­tion Attempts (out on Falk Records). Cold atmo­spheres, var­ied beat pat­terns, and sharp edges make this into an album to be reckoned with.

An old Swans tape got bur­ied some­where in Syria and was dug up by a bunch of local synth afi­cion­ados. Or at least, that’s what Big Debbie’s ABRACADEBRA (2018, Rat­skin Records) sounds like at times. Deserty indus­trial rock for fuzz-headed freaks.

When mummy wants some bleeps and beats, it’s time to grab an album like Glitch Blacks World’s Ruin (2015). High-intens­ity syn­thwave for an end of a world.

Ingrid Laubrock’s works bridge mod­ern clas­sical and jazz, com­pos­i­tion and impro­visa­tion. Con­tem­por­ary Chaos Prac­tices is a power­ful, demand­ing col­lec­tion, at times dark and heavy, but free in spirit. The inter­ac­tion between orches­tra, soloists (gui­tar, piano, trum­pet, sax), and duo of con­duct­ors is intric­ate and inspiring—all up to the chal­lenges posed by these ambi­tious scores. Con­tem­por­ary Chaos Prac­tices is out on Nov 16 on Intakt Records.

A John Col­trane double bill for me this week. Ascen­sion is wild and sem­inal, the gate­way to Col­trane’s free jazz period, while Dakar is full of great hard bop tunes from the late 50s.

SARRAM brings us four tracks based on gui­tar and synth, ran­ging from heavy post-rock­ing drones to melodic ambi­ent pas­sages. Four Move­ments of a Shade is a con­vin­cing sopho­more effort for Valerio Mar­ras, and will come out Nov 23 on Midira.

Very fine dynamic ambi­ent on Tan­gent’s latest album for n5MD, Approach­ing Com­plex­ity. Which is what the beats do as the album pro­gresses: more com­plex bass rhythms joined by soft waves and twink­ling melod­ies.

Des­cendre by Terje Ryp­dal (with Palle Mikkel­borg and Jon Christensen – 1980, ECM) is a very focused, trio-based work that casts jazz improv into a spacy rock mould. Quite often, the sound is car­ried by key­boards and either gui­tar or trumpet/flugelhorn, which gives the whole a float­ing ambi­ent qual­ity that’s irres­ist­ably calm­ing. Christensen on drums and per­cus­sion is under­statedly bril­liant.

Genre-defy­ing elec­tron­ics from valyri on let go (2018). Deep eth­er­eal melod­ies, warped vocals and drums. Astral dan­cing. Avail­able through sub­scrip­tion only, but highly recom­men­ded: https://​valyri​.com/​a​l​b​u​m​/​l​e​t​-go. Or per­haps a label should pick this up! (plz!)

Proper dark synth beats with a noisy edge on ZAVOLOKA’s Pro­meni (2018, kvitnu). Heavy, stomp­ing bass kicks and grainy low-end synths form the base for this oth­er­worldly col­lec­tion of tracks.