Review: Jazz-man Greg Foat has always been more open-minded and eclectic than many give him credit for, delivering nods to pastoral folk, movie soundtracks and library music amongst his more jazz-focused output. Even so, "Photosynthesis" is still a curveball, featuring as it does drowsy and mostly leisurely soundscapes that move from Radiophonic Workshop influenced weird-outs and mutant lounge music, to stoned horizontal grooves and post trip-hop soundscapes. Interestingly, some of the album's standout moments come laden with woozy electric pianos and the kind of hazy, slow motion guitar motifs that evoke mental images of long, drawn-out sunsets.
Review: It's cult records and mythical artists like this that record collectors fawn over for years. Well this particular wait is now over as for the first time ever on vinyl you can now own two super rare 1980-82 tapes by Two Daughters. They were a mysterious pair affiliated with Throbbing Gristle and recorded all sorts of dark and haunting noise in Brixton for Nurse With Wound's United Dairies. This session is as freaky as they come, with muffled voices appearing out of the noise like apparitions. Hypnotic and daunting, droning and bleakly mesmeric, this music sounds to us like the shadowy corridors of an old lunatic asylum in the dead of a winter's night.
Review: Tribe Of Colin have done a good job of keeping their identity unknown despite plenty of well received releases. Honest Jon's gets a fourth album from the enigmatic artist(s) that deals in sludgy techno, dubby steppers and pulsing electronic music that harks back to the streets of Detroit as much as hinting at a future London landscape long after humans have long gone. Twisted synths, shimmering percussion, dark chords and complex rhythms are interwoven with gritty textures and field recordings from around the world to make it a spellbinding listen. Fans of Actress and Andy Stott will love.
Skratte (Line Accelerator, A Nest Of Cocks) (3:56)
Ions Collis (6:17)
Luh Windan (2:56)
Dream Hole (4:29)
Review: "A Flock Of Rotations" is the final reissue from Vinyl On Demand's ongoing focus on cult Newcastle upon Tyne group Zoviet France whose dissonant, industrial and droning sounds were influential throughout the eighties and nineties. This album is one of the best - it blurs the lines between ambient and psychedelic sounds, post-rock and noise on often scratchy tracks, with gauzy surfaces mired in grit and grizzled guitars. Adding an element of terror are distressed human cries and mangled folk vocals that make things bleak yet beguiling throughout.
Review: "Sulla Pelle" marks the first collaborative release between London based Italian Valentina Magaletti and Swiss artist Julian Sartorius. Made using The Heliocentrics' 1970s BBC mixing desk, it is a meditation on rhythm, off grid grooves and stuttering percussive lines that will loosen every bone in your body. There is a delicacy and minimalism to the hypnotic ten minute opus "Micro Tormento", but "Tre Port" is a darker, more sparse affair with loose hits and tumbling drums. Opener "Sobaka" is the prickliest of the lot and the title track is the busiest and most restless, making for a fantastic trip over all.
Review: Saxophonist and keyboardist Jorja Chalmers has accomplished much over the course of her career - she's toured and recorded extensively with Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music - but debut album "Human Again" marks the first time she's stood centre stage as a solo artist. She has all the ingredients to succeed on her own, though: a bold look, a supportive label in Italians Do It Better and a signature style that's in turns creepy, claustrophobic, cinematic, atmospheric and seductive. More importantly, "Human Again" is superb, offering a synthesizer-powered mix of dark ambient instrumentals, David Lynch style soundtrack pieces, drowsy and clandestine sounding songs and cuts that wrap her distinctive saxophone solos around the most evocative of electronic soundscapes.
Review: Since she burst on to the experimental music scene three years ago, percussionist, composer and sound designer Sarah Hennies has proved particularly adept at creating conceptual pieces that are more accessible and breathtakingly beautiful than similar exercises devised by her peers. "Reservoir 1: Reservation", is a fantastic example. Apparently part of a trilogy based on "the relationship between the conscious and unconscious mind", the piece sees Hennies and her fellow Meridian collective members take turns to deliver unique percussive sounds and textures to the accompaniment of Phillip Bush's mesmerizing piano motifs. It's undeniably minimalist in its approach, but utterly beguiling: a beautiful work that may one day be spoken of in hushed tones.