M & E Audiozine No. 8 - Compact Disc Samper
(Music & Elsewhere 1999, M&E 455, Cassette)
From Aural Innovations #8 (October 1999)
Music & Elsewhere, noted for their cassette releases of all styles of indie rock also has a CD distribution service and this periodic cassette audiozine is a sampler of CD's they carry. Here's what we've got this on No. 8:
Fans of Hawkwind and related bands should be familiar with Sweden's Pseudo Sun, the band darXtar bassist Juba formed after he left that band. If not, this comp includes the track "Signs Of Life" from the Future Memoirs CD. This is a great metallic rocker with deep space synths that jams hard and is a good track choice for a sampler.
Three other tracks by bands Memetic Field, Artemiy Artemiev, and Mr. Ebu are space related but more in the electronic realm. Mimetic Field's entry is an interesting piece that begins with operatic vocals and heavy orchestra instrumentation, but soon develops into an electronic tune. The electronic music by itself isn't anything special but combined with the choral operatic vocals it's pretty interesting. Artemiy Artemiev's music is deep space electronica that has an underwater feel like traveling in a submarine. But later we hear the sound of bagpipes which throws the earlier image out the window. But this too is an interesting tune with heavy percussion sounds and lots of bleeping and blurping synths. Mr. Ebu's track is more spacey electronica consisting of multi-layered but changing sequenced patterns, accompanied by single, but also changing lead synth lines. It's actually pretty good as despite the fact that these are repetitive patterns there's an impressive amount of development.
The rest of the disc, though not space related, still has some sylistically varied and interesting bands. Scrooge's entry is one of my favorites featuring dissonant guitar, bass, and violin patterns. Maybe like a laid back version of Primus, or even Henry Cow. The performance arty female vocalist that sounds like Suzanne Lewis (Thinking Plague, Hail) fits the music well. Body Full Of Stars' track is from their Falling Angels CD reviewed last issue. Star Period Star are the guys whose "Jet Propulsion Mystery Summer" album I raved about last issue. I don't know this album, but this song is like "Sad Road Villa", the one song on the disc I reviewed that was completely unlike the stuff that really tripped my trigger. This is a decent tune but not illustrative of the instrumental mania these guys are capable of. Re-read my review last issue then run out and get that CD. Werk's entry is a funky groovin' rock tune with heavy bass and percussion that makes it quite danceable. Into The Abyss has been reviewed by Keith in the past though it seems that the music on the CD he loaned me was much better than the melodic prog-metal of this tune which would appeal to fans of the Magna Carta label. Finally there is Blacklight Braille who play a Middle Age Renaissance folk rock with really nice female vocals. I hear what are probably a lot of traditional instruments that I wouldn't guess at without knowing what they are. Good stuff.
For more information visit the Music & Elsewhere web site. Music & Elsewhere has been aggressively releasing cool indie music of all stripes for years. Check them out!!!
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz