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.
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.
The late Ginger Baker was one of the most powerful and innovative drummers to ever grace rock music, especially since he never truly considered himself a “rock” drummer, but rather a jazz drummer. You can hear it in this release where he collaborates with legendary bassist Bill Laswell and Gambian griot Foday Musa Suso for this 20-minute EP.
Suso and Baker play their instruments off of each other beautifully, while Laswell anchors the chaos. Recommended.
Much respect to Mr. Bongo Records for releasing a track considered to be the ‘holy grail’ of Brazilian pop, Ze Roberto’s classic Lotus 72 D, a paean to Formula 1 race car driver Emerson Fittipaldi, who was crowned world champion in 1972.
Apparently, the fast version of this song is the one that is most well-known, yet it seems that version was pitched up. Track 1 is the correct version, but both are included in this 7-inch.
From the ashes of The Hare And The Moon comes Meadowsilver, at least as how I understand it. Grey Malkin continues to be one of the leaders of psychedelic neofolk, and will eventually take his place among acts like the Legendary Pink Dots, Comus and the like.
This is way too small a taste of this new project, of course, so we wait to see what Meadowsilver will produce next.
This release bridges the not-so-large gap between genres, connected by Heldon guitarist and loop master Richard Pinhas, and perhaps the most prolific post-Industrial composer of all time, Masami Akita (under his performance monicker Merzbow).
This is a live recording performed live during the Sonic Circuits Festival, September 24, 2010 at La Maison Française [The French Embassy] in Washington D.C. The sound quality is superb, and as one would expect from two masters of their respective fields, their instruments of choice (guitar and loops for Pinhas, computer for Merzbow) ebb and flow into each other effortlessly. This is a powerful release, and I hope it is the beginning of a long-term collaboration between both.
If you are a fan of the genre, this release will not leave you feeling disappointed at all. The guitar work is excellent, as it soars and dives effortlessly, and is supplemented with a fair amount of noise that doesn’t overwhelm the beauty of the tracks.