Review: Music On Vinyl continues to offer up fresh vinyl editions of albums from Klaus Schulze and Pete Namlook's "Dark Side Of The Moog" series, a largely CD-only sequence of sets that brought together two of Germany's most celebrated electronic music talents. This volume - the seventh in total - was recorded by the pair in cahoots with Bill Laswell way back in 1998, and appears here for the first time on wax. While naturally rooted in the kind of intergalactic ambience that was always Namlook's forte, the various versions of "Obscured By Klaus" include audible nods to throbbing ambient techno, deep electro and '90s psy-trance. The standout moment, though, is pure slowly shifting ambient bliss: the near 20-minute voyage that is "Part 3".
Review: The late Pete Namlook remains a giant of the ambient world. His vast catalogue of works has defined and redefined the genre over and over again, often alongside fellow greats from Move D to Richie Hawtin. In 2016, however, it was Klaus Schulze at the controls alongside his German countryman and together they cooked up this eight-part adventure into cosmic ambience and psychedelic sound design. Some parts reference Eno's seminal "Apollo: Atmospheres & Soundtracks", some are more synth heavy, Vangelis-style epics, and some dip into Detroit techno for their cues. It makes for an album as expansive as it is excellent.
Review: Music On Vinyl has done the world a favour - or vinyl-loving ambient enthusiasts, at least - by offering up wax editions of Klaus Schulze and Pete Namlook's work as Dark Side of the Moog. For the uninitiated, the German duo released a string of CD-only ambient albums under the alias over a 14-year period between 1994 and 2008. Volume six, subtitled "the Final DAT", first surfaced on Namlook's Fax label in 1997. It featured fellow ambient explorer Bill Laswell and features tracks that drift between spoken word-laden deep space soundscapes ("Part I"), trip-hop influenced late night shufflers ("Part II"), bubbly ambient trance ("Part III"), blissful ambient techno ("Part IV", with its sun-kissed guitar solos and spaced-out grooves) and widescreen electronic epics (the utterly sublime brilliance of 24-minute "Part V").
Review: Long before his avant-rock days in Aksak Maboul or his pop chapter as the founder of Telex, Belgian experimentalist Marc Moulin laid down a series of forward-thinking instrumental albums. Highlights from his albums Ball Of Eyes, 1973 and Placebo, each cut shimmers with a star-gazing, multi-instrumental narrative that refuses to sit still. From the organ ripples and tightly plucked steel strings of "NW" to the lounge-slapping keys and lightly brushed drums of "Showbizz Suite", Marc's early work acts as a European take on the foundations dug by Bob James. Deep, delicious and still sounding daring to this day.
Review: Between 1994 and 2008, German electronic legends Klaus Schulze and Pete Namlook recorded eleven albums as Dark Side of The Moog. Most of these were never released on vinyl, making this first wax edition of 1996's volume five - in which another legendary figure, Bill Laswell, also contributed - a must have for ambient enthusiasts. The set itself is typical of the pair's collaborative work, offering up a mixture of synthesizer-powered neo-classical movements, breathtaking ambient soundscapes, gentle rhythmic spaced-out epics, sunrise-ready electronica and deep space ambient dub. It's the sound of two true masters at work, offering up timeless electronic music that will never sound tired or contrived.
Review: ** REPRESS ALERT ** For the uninitiated: Billy Cobham is a Panamanian-American jazz drummer, composer and bandleader. He is also the brother of multi instrumentalist Wayne Cobham. He was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1987 and the Classic Drummer Hall of Fame in 2013. Produced with the legendary Jan Hammer (a former bandmate) and engineer Ken Scott in 1973, Spectrum was Cobham's first solo album after leaving his previous group Mahavishnu Orchestra. The album was heavily influenced by the music of Miles Davis, with whom Cobham had previously collaborated extensively. A seminal album of the jazz fusion scene. A Swiss resident since 1980s, Cobham now lives in Schoepfen, a canton near Bern.
Review: Klaus Schulze and Peter Namlook's The Dark Side Of The Moog series receives a timely update on vinyl, having only been reissued a handful of times since its first release in the early to mid 90s. Much like the second volume, which should be bought in conjuction with this opener, you'll be stuck to find any better sources of ambient or drone on these charts. Yes, the modern kids might verge further into the heart of the rave, but this music has a way of lifting the soul that's rarely matched. Led by images of time and space, the legendary duo's music is truly capable of tele-transporting you into a higher state of consciousness; the best thing about it is how rich and fresh it sounds upon each new listen. Highly recommended.