[Music] Vainoras and the altar of the drill – Life​,​Love​,​Doomjazz

The more I hear doomjazz artists, the more enthralled I become with the genre.  It sounds as though jazz-noir combines well with a nearly ambient aesthetic.  Our latest case-in-point are the Australian group Vainoras and the altar of the drill.  This release appeared out of nowhere last night, and it has had my ears perked up ever since.

There is a mellow, spacious, yet creepy vibe flowing throughout the album.  It’s not unnecessarily noisy at all, which makes the experience much more pleasant.  This is music to think and fume to.

[Music] Mikhail Chekalin – Symphony​-​Phonogram

Mikhail Chekalin deserves at least as credit for being a leading light in electronic music and New Age music as artists like Klaus Schulze, Peter Frohmader or Vangelis.  That might be a provocative statement to some who enjoy this kind of music, but I think the comparison stands, as Mikhail has been releasing quality music consistently for so long that a new album is simply expected to be solid now.  He’s never let me down yet.

[Music] Various Artists – Witchcraft & Black Magic In The United Kingdom

Our friend and compatriot Raffaele Pezzalla (the legend behind Sonologyst, Unexplained Sounds Group and Eighth Tower Records) has made yet another masterful compilation, bringing together such acts as Rapoon, Michael Bonaventure and Daniel Williams to pay tribute to one of England’s quirkier periods – that of witchcraft in the British Isles.

I see the history of witchcraft from both a Christian and historical point of view which differs from what the liner notes say, but be that as it may, the compilation is solid, and I only regret I didn’t review this about two weeks ago, as it makes for great Halloween / All Souls’ Day listening.

[Music] Various Artists – A Last Sunset, A Celebration of Candy Lozier, Volume 1

There is a group of wonderful ambient musicians on Facebook who constantly release music of stunningly good quality.  Names like Cousin Silas, Martin Neuwirth, Glen Sogge and Scott Lawlor among others are among the great names working in this field.  Another was Candy Lozier, a fine composer who passed away in September of this year.  She collaborated with so many wonderful musicians, ran a label, and contributed mightily to the spread of ambient and electronic music.  This compilation is a great memorial to all she did for the scene.

[Music] JOHN 3​:​16 – JOHN 3​:​16 / Visions Of The Hereafter

JOHN 3:16 are among the most powerful bands in dark ambient and drone music today.  Philippe Gerber continues to amaze with his catalog, but this release is particularly special, as I never had the chance to delve into their early catalog.

This release combines the first two albums by the band onto one cassette.  Both releases remind me not just of dark ambient music, but of the middle period post-Industrial and experimental music I grew up with.

Favorable is not a strong enough word to rank this release.  It’s quite powerful.

[Music] Various Artists – Anthology of Contemporary Music From Middle East

Never think that the Middle East is ignorant of current musical (or anti-musical) trends.  They are probably better informed that a fair amount of their Western colleagues, and are making music that proves it.  Once again, many thanks to the brilliant Raffaele Pezzella for being such a visionary.

From the Unexplained Sounds Group Bandcamp site:

Following the Anthology of contemporary music from the African continent, this new collection released by Unexplained Sounds Group, focuses on experimental and alternative music from the Middle East and includes artists from Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey, Bahrain, Kuwait, Iran, Israel, Iraq, Palestine, Jordan, Afghanistan, Cyprus. A kaleidoscope of sounds by artists rooted in their traditions, but at the same time projected towards the new frontiers of music. The minimal melody of Ahmed Saleh introduces us to the exploration of sound paths that unfold through the electronic experimentation of Cenk Ergun, the radical improvisation of Mazen Kerbaj, the pulsating and disturbed electronic of Tony Elieh, the noise drone of Nyctalllz, the tribal and psychedelic music, in the Velvet Underground style, by Afghan musician Naujawanan Baidar, the lysergic ambient of Bloom Tribe, just to mention some projects included in the compilation. An intricate and exciting sound puzzle in which the listener will find his favorite way to a new promised land of sound.