[Music] Midnight Radio – NOIR JAZZ


I never thought I’d review a Signora Ward release here, namely due to a prejudice I’ve developed against modern noise, as too many releases sound like some idiot kid flipping on the vacuum and then recording it, and THEN having the nerve to expect someone to pay for that garbage.  Thankfully, I was wrong about this particular label.  Perdonami, Signora!

This compilation is a teachable moment for me.  Never, ever judge a record label by one or two releases, as every one of them have the capacity to surprise you with something utterly brilliant.

Thanks to groups like the Orchestra of Mirrored Reflections (friends of the blog whose works have been reviewed here in the past) and the Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble, I’ve begun to fall in love with the deep, creepy, noir-ish sounds they emanate.  Signora Ward have done a service in collection some of the leading lights of the darkjazz genre together to make one of the most enjoyable collections I’ve heard in a while.

I’ll do well to pay more attention to this label in the future!

[Music] Jeton Hoxha – Vowel


I’m tempted to say that this release came from out of nowhere, but that simply wouldn’t be true.  Once again, my good friend Raffaelle from Eighth Tower Records releases a bombshell of a release for those of you who are into drone, especially of the kind made by luminaries like Thomas Köner or the Cold Meat Industry roster.

Jeton is a Macedonian sound artist from Struga, Macedonia, who goes deep in for bleak, rumbling sounds which give you a good shaking, especially if you decide to download the FLAC file and hear it on great headphones.

Essential.

[Music] Hot 8 Brass Band – Love Will Tear Us Apart


Yes, that Love Will Tear Us Apart!

The Hot 8 Brass Band came to my attention with their cover of Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing arranged for a brass ensemble.  The band has soul and have no trouble giving life to older songs, but would they be able to give such life to one of the darkest post-punk ‘love’ songs ever made?  The results are pretty astounding.

Below is the official video.

[Music] Reptilicus & Senking – Unison


There are times when bleak post-Industrial music can be absolutely rhythmic and beautiful.  A case in point is the release by Artoffact Records’ of a performance by Iceland’s finest dark-electronics project Reptilicus.  This was a performance done in Toronto, Canada, organized by Praveer Baijal, founder of the seminal Toronto label Yatra-Arts, on the happy occasion of new output in the form of a 7-inch release after a (far too) long period of inactivity.  For the performance, they were joined by Germany’s Senking, Denmark’s Rúnar Magnússon, and Candian duo Orphx.

The group recorded a session at Grant Avenue Studio in Hamilton, Ontario, built my Grammy Award-winning producer and musician Daniel and Bob Lanois and  after Baijal introduced Reptilicus to William Blakeney, who at the time was producing a modular-synthesizer documentary called I Dream of Wires.

This collaboration bore fruit in the recording you hear here.  A lot of the material is reminiscent of early Industrial experiments (think more about early Cabaret Voltaire than Throbbing Gristle or NON), yet with a far crisper, dynamic sound.  Reptilicus has since become augmented with Rúnar serving as third member, and it is our hope that this unit continue to record.

[Podcasts] The Discovery of Middle Earth: Mapping the Lost World of the Celts by Graham Robb

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From the John Batchelor podcast site:

A treasure hunt that uncovers the secrets of one of the world’s great civilizations, revealing dramatic proof of the extreme sophistication of the Celts, and their creation of the earliest accurate map of the world.

Fifty generations ago the cultural empire of the Celts stretched from the Black Sea to Ireland and the Highlands of Scotland. In six hundred years, the Celts had produced some of the finest artistic and scientific masterpieces of the ancient world. In 58 BC, Julius Caesar marched over the Alps, bringing slavery and genocide to western Europe. Within eight years the Celts of what is now France were utterly annihilated, and in another hundred years the Romans had overrun Britain. It is astonishing how little remains of this great civilization.

To purchase the book, go here.

[Music] As JK Flesh, Godflesh’s Justin Broadrick Finds Peace In Solitude and Techno

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Justin Broadrick should be a name very familiar to you if you were ever a fan of Napalm Death, Jesu, or my two personal favorites from his oeuvre, Godflesh and Techno-AnimalBandcamp Daily references his newest material (which has sat around, in some cases, for nearly two decades), JK Flesh.

Brilliant material!

[Music] Various Artists – Decay, Death and Darkness – Aural Visions Of Beksiński’s Art


Zdzisław Beksiński was a Polish multimedia artist whose utopian realist works stood in stark contrast to his rather jovial personal demeanor.  He may have been an artists whose work could scare the hell out of you, but he was also quite a decent man who had a fondness for classical music, as well as some rock (his son, Tomasz, was a noted DJ who committed suicide in 1999).

Once again, the brilliant folks at Eighth Tower Records, a subgroup of Unexplained Sounds, have released a compilation whose subject inspired some of the most brutally dark ambient music artists active to come up with some bleak aural monstrosities.