Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

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yellow6
merry6mas2018

British post-rocker yellow6 (Jon Attwood) gets into the festive spirit with merry6mas2018. Usually with Christmas albums you get at least some nod to the holidays. Not merry6mas2018. In fact, this LP is wholly comprised of offcuts from November’s 20th anniversary mega-album REFLECT. Mind you, the Jonny Greenwood-aping guitar instrumentals here are pretty enough to bring a certain brand of Xmas cheer to the table. Who's for eggnog?
  • CD
  • £9.99 £7.99 (saving: £2.00)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Aukai
Branches of Sun

Markus Sieber -- born in East Germany, 15 years prior to the dismantling of the Berlin Wall -- delivers his sophomore album as Aukai, 'Branches of Sun'. Sieber spent a month holed up in the Colorado Rockies; each day crossing a frozen lake twice, to and from his studio in a cabin in the mountains. The result is an album rich in beautifully sensual, textured tones; featuring piano, cello and Andean ronroco / baritone charango -- a guitar-like instrument in the lute family. Once again Sieber has proved himself a master of delicate, dappled, emotional music.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

This Mortal Coil
Blood

Blood was the third and final This Mortal Coil album and like it's predecessor Filagree and Shadow, was presented as a double album. Once again large swathes of the 4AD roster were involved and the album has several highlights that compare favourably with their earlier work. There are two Chris Bell (Big Star) songs including an exquisite 'You and Your Sister' performed by Kim Deal and Tanya Donnelly and the likes of Gene Clark, Syd Barrett and Mary Margaret O'Hara get their back catalogues raided.   
  • Label(s):
  • 4AD

Why?
Live at Third Man Records

Why? are a hip-hop inspired indie band fronted by Yoni Wolf. Following the release of their most recent album, last year's Moh Lhean, Why? played at Third Man Records - the Chocolate Factory to Jack White's Willy Wonka. Live at Third Man Records is a raucous reminder of the night.

Gri + Mosconi
Between Ocean and Sky

There seems to be a lot of excellent ambient, drone and soundscape coming out of Italy at the moment. Here, Francis M. Gri and Federico Mosconi come together to create Between Ocean and Sky, which is the third in the Slowcraft Presents series. Created between Milan and Verona, the album is an indefinable sound of ethereal beauty and underlying dread.  
  • CD
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition
  • Last copy

Justin Walter
Unseen Forces

Justin Walter plays the EVI (Electronic Valve Instrument) ‘wind-synth’ that is mainly seen in the hands of the Sun Ra Arkestra’s Marshall Allen these days. But Unseen Forces doesn’t hide the instrument in a large ensemble: it puts the EVI out there solo, in a set of semi-improvised and sometimes re-sequenced performances. A pretty unique record, out on Kranky.

Kit Grill
Obsession

Kit Grill is a musician and producer from London. His career so far has seen him taking in influences from everywhere, working with electronic music and weird and wonderful samples. Obsession, his latest cassette, focuses solely on the piano. Since 2013 he has released 3 additional albums and 5 12” EPs, all for Primary Colours.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

This Mortal Coil
Filigree and Shadow

Filagree and Shadow was the follow up to the much loved debut It Will End In Tears from shadowy 4AD collective This Mortal Coil. Again leader Ivo Watts-Russell chose a supergroup made out of (mostly) artists on his label but this time there were more self penned compositions, enough to make it into a double album. Like it's more lauded debut exquisite taste was shown in the choice of covers with Tim Buckley, Gene Clark and Wire all getting their songbooks raided. 
  • Label(s):
  • 4AD

Heinali
Anthem

Oleg Shpudeiko has suggested that the existence of this album is linked to a therapeutic journey of recovery from emotional darkness. Given the depth of emotion present in the rich sonic world it presents, this is easy to imagine. The album utilises various methods of production and structuring, blending techniques from Shpudeiko’s modern-classical work with approaches to composition you might find on a film soundtrack. The electronic elements are prominent, with circular repetitions bringing the work close to the very outer reaches of techno and more ambient forms of noise, sat comfortably in the world of soundscape-informed music alongside Abul Mogard or Ben Frost.

Hammock
Universalis

Nashville instrumental duo Hammock are nearing fifteen years in the game. Here’s the second instalment in their planned trilogy of albums (the first was 2017’s Mysterium). They occupy an airy space between post-rock, slowcore, ambient and modern classical (aka ambient cello); sounds like Ólafur Arnalds covering Mono’s quiet bits. Titles include ‘Tether of Yearning’, ‘Scattering Light’ and ‘We Watched You Disappear’. Top post-rock titles there.

Denis Wise
Wize Music

Denis Wise, no, not former Chelsea, Wimbledon, Millwall and reality TV irritant, but the electronic/ambient/ experimental tape pioneer who has worked with Bill Laswell and Gong’s Daevid Allen. Wize Music compiles his work for the first time from his very difficult to find self-pressed LPs to work he contributed to projects with members of the Emerald Web Band. LP on Finders Keepers.

Eraldo Bernocchi
Like A Fire That Consumes All Before It

Italian multi-instrumentalist Eraldo Bernocchi, releases a soundtrack to the documentary 'Cy Dear' documenting the life of the American artist, Cy Twombly. Released on Bernocchi's co-founded label, RareNoise, Like A Fire That Consumes All Before It is an atmospheric soundtrack suitable for the life of the influential artist.  

Matthias Puech
Alpestres

Matthias Puech is a builder of modular synths, and also a user of those synths, in this case creating an abstract electronic soundscape that also evokes in some way an Alpine hike. Alpestres actually has a lot of sonic focus and narrative drive for a modular synth record, with evocative titles in various European languages to help the listener off on their sonic trip up the mountain.
  • Vinyl LP (HITD 042)
  • £17.99 £14.39 (saving: £3.60)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition

Oliver Kearns
Amelioration

Pianist and field recordist Oliver Kearns has spun together a number of different threads to form the 67 minute Amelioration. An album that completely washes over you, before slowly revealing it's depth and variety. The space within its ambience is made real by free jazz inspired drumming. On Aphelion Editions.
  • Tape (APHELION010-K7)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • CD (APHELION010-CD)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Various
Pop Ambient 2019

Ah you can set your watch by it....and terrify yourself that it seems to have been about three years since Pop Ambient 2001. Yes for fans of ambient music, time is marked by these compilations from Kompakt. The curators always seem to find something new and this year sees contributions from Coupler, Last Train To Brooklyn, The Black Frame, Yui Onodera Max Würde, Triola aka Jörg Burger / The Modernist, Thomas Fehlmann. Not always household named but part of the charm of these things is discovery.  

Meg Baird & Mary Lattimore
Ghost Forests

Meg Baird and Mary Lattimore are both great, let's be honest. So Ghost Forests was bound to be a winner of a record: and so it has proved. The two musicians have built six songs together, mixing the many strings of the guitar and the harp with Mary’s vocals. Ghosts Forests feels like a perfect fitting-together of two excellent solo artists: try it. On Three Lobed Recordings.

Ian William Craig
Thresholder

Ian William Craig is always very welcome round these parts, and Thresholder, the man’s first album in eighteen months, demonstrates why. Those tape machines of his are put to work in the construction of an eleven-track, forty-minute sound environment. Deep and gorgeous smeared ambience, on FatCat sub-label 130701.

Bipolar Explorer
Sometimes In Dreams

Bipolar Explorer is the cheerily-named project of NYC dynamic duo Summer Serafin and Michael Serafin-Wells. As ever on Slugg Records, Sometimes in Dreams is their seventh album - and they made this one a double. The pair specialise in shoegazy dream-rock, blending sung lyrics with poetry and spoken word to convey tender affection, warmth and also great tragedy and sadness.

Northerner
End Of The Holiday

Those who have missed the evocative guitar playing of Vini Reilly over the last few years, should maybe check out Northerner (AKA Martin Cummings) to get their fix. This, his third full length album on Home Assembly, is full of perfect evocative soundscapes with a dusky balearic feel and laden with those gorgeous plangent guitar stylings over gently rolling electronica.  *UK EXCLUSIVE ON SILVER VINYL* (whilst stocks last).    
  • Vinyl LP (HAM019LPC)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Coloured vinyl

Same Waves
Algorithm of Desire

‘Algorithm of Desire’ by Same Waves is an exercise in oddball electronic pop, both restrained and open-ended. Same Waves are a collaboration between Lindsay Anderson (L’ALTRA) and John Hughes, together making a sound of hushed eccentricity, welcome to scrapes of violin, plonking synths, and at times almost whispered vocals. The LP - which features contributions from the likes of Bill MacKay and Macie Stewart - is released by the Flau label.
  • Vinyl LP (FLAU71LP)
  • £19.25 £11.55 (saving: £7.70)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Richard Neale
Growth + Decay

Bespectacled producer Richard “Hexagonal Packaging” Neale follows last year’s Eves with new EP Growth + Decay. Though it retains its folky tinges, the spontaneous live instrumentation of Eves largely gives way to digital loops of short phrases, layered and built up into something quite dramatic. As before, mastered by James Plotkin.

Rapoon
Little Rocket Man And The Planet That Moved

Rapoon is Robin Storey, formerly known to the world as a member of Zoviet France. He’s a busy bee, and new album The Little Rocket Man And The Planet That Moved works as a particularly good example of his well-refined aesthetic: wide, droning soundworlds, propelled by beats and considering the dark state of our planet. Released by Klanggalerie.

Irmin Schmidt
5 Klavierstücke

An album of solo piano pieces from Can keyboardist Irmin Schmidt here. The five tracks of 5 Klavierstücke are one-take improvisations which were recorded on two grand pianos - one prepared, one unprepared - and augmented with ambient noise from around the studio in the south of France. The prepared instrument forms the core of the record, and in doing so it gives the LP a strong whiff of Schmidt's one-time tutor John Cage.

Charles Ditto
Basso Continuo: Cyberdelic Ambient and Nootropic Soundscapes (1987-1994)

For fans of abstract ambient early adopter Charles Ditto, here’s a bunch of secrets well-kept. With a name like Basso Continuo: Cyberdelic Ambient and Nootropic Soundscapes, and an album-cover like that, what else is there to say? Expect compositions drawing on long, low drones as well as jumbling electronics, reminiscent of early 80’s action-flick soundtracks.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Choir Boy
Passive With Desire

Synth-pop! Passive With Desire, by Choir Boy, has the intimate lonely feel of bedroom DIY productions, though the detailed band arrangements and even live instrumentation(!) actually give it a broader scope, crossing in places into the feel of actual eighties hit pop. Heavy feels and light synth melodies: out on Dais.

Winterlight
The Longest Sleep Through The Darkest Days

Plymouth shoegaze/electronic poppers Winterlight are keeping it in the family with their latest album which sees leader Tim Ingham's daughter Isabel taking over on bass duties. Cute. They've taken seven years over this faffing with all kinds of sounds before realising if it ain't broke don't fix it. Smart. 

PLYXY
Gloryland

After being issued as a small cassette run by Ascetic House in early 2018 PLYXY’s Gloryland now gets a re-release via Hallow Ground. As is the want of the Swiss label, this record is a pretty frosty and demanding listen. The gnarled, weary synthscapes here recall Forest Swords and fellow HG act Dedekind Cut. Closer ‘March Of Youth’ breaks out into full-on noise.

Colorlist
Full Circle

Colorlist: Charles Rumback, Charles Gorzcynski, and John Hughes (of Hibernis). Four veterans of Chicago’s transgressive underground jazz scene. Here’s their fourth album, courtesy of dependably tasteful Welsh label Serein. The quartet’s interactions of woodwinds, drums and various electronics are graceful and atmospheric.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Celer
Memory Repetitions

Coming to a letterbox or collection depot near you: it’s Celer, the reliably ambient and ambiently reliable work of Tokyo resident Will Long - someone whose surname accurately describes his discography. This is a muscular five-parter - one lengthy part per disc - aimed to reflect back on the Celer story so far. Highly recommended to fans of Celer.

Janek Schaefer (For Robert Wyatt)
What Light There Is Tells Us Nothing

Scholarly sound artist Janek Schaefer has been doing his thing while garnering acclaim for at least two decades now, and here he is with a new work that showcases his transient sound at its most accessible. The new record (For Robert Wyatt) - 'What Light There Is Tells Us Nothing' was constructed from parts of Wyatt's 'Cuckooland' album and is particularly resonant, now adapted from the performance into one side of the record. The piece is complemented by 7 new equally poignant compositions. Well, count me in. Limited edition (1000 copies) of the transparent gold vinyl LP, also on CD; on Temporary Residence.

Colin Potter
Rank Sonata

Colin Potter has been orbiting the centre of the UK underground music scene(s) for his whole career, as a member of Nurse With Wound and Current 93 and through a stack of other collaborations. Rank Sonata is a fully solo work however, and finds Potter wandering his electronics down dreamy ambient pathways. On Hallow Ground.

Various
Midday Moon, Ambient and Experimental Recordings from Australia & New Zealand 1980 - 1995

Aussie label Bedroom Suck brings us Midday Moon, an excellent new double-LP comp of ambient and experimental musics out of Australia and New Zealand taken from the period of 1980 to 1995. The recordings have origins on various micro-labels, private pressings and the artists' own personal archives. Melbourne DJ / archivist Rowan 'Sanpo Disco' Mason has delved deep into a largely uncelebrated world of latter twentieth-century Aussie New Age and beyond. And we're glad he did. 

Modern Cosmology
Summer Long

Astonishingly this collaboration between Stereolab chanteuse Letitia Sadier and Brazilian band Mombojo has almost exactly the same name as the title of the recent Jane Weaver album. I mean, it’s unbelievable isn’t it? How does that happen?  Anyway this should be a nice small album of  bossa-nova, pop, and psychedelia for summer. 

Keir Vine
Instance

London’s Trestle Records (City Shepherd, Adam Coney) drop a record from famed keyboardist/hang player Keir Vine. The Instance EP is rather different to the plush post-jazz that Vine dishes up as part of Portico Quartet. These eight tracks are built around droning church organs, field recordings, found sounds and little snippets of piano. They've got a bit of a Ghost Box flavour to it. It all adds up to a really nice listen.

Aphex Twin
Selected Ambient Works 85-92

Not sure that you need us to introduce this one to you. The album that broke Aphex Twin to the masses (relatively speaking), Selected Ambient Works 85-92 starts with two genuinely sublime pieces of music, ‘Xtal’ and ‘Tha’, which your collection literally cannot be without. The whole thing is great though, whether for solo listening late at night or for esoteric dancefloors. An absolute classic.

Ensemble 0
Ensemble 0 Plays Eight Compositions and It Lasts 38:36

Can’t fault them for clarity and accuracy. Ensemble 0 Plays Eight Compositions and It Lasts 38:36 delivers on each of the promises of its title, and the individual tracks follow the same format. This contemporary group devised their own pieces for (mostly) acoustic instrumentation, and the results are tenderly-textured and delicately explorative. LP release on the Flau label.
  • Vinyl LP (FLAU77LP)
  • Coloured vinyl
  • Limited edition
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Saloli
The Deep End

The Year Zero for Mary Sutton’s debut LP as Saloli was a performance at a clothing-optional soaking-pool sauna. In attempting to make music for people relaxing in hot bubbly water, Sutton came up with these sounds of warm, tranquil beauty. The generative point of The Deep End encourages comparisons with Yamaneko’s Spa Commissions, but the sounds here lean more towards the New Age reissues of Seance Centre. Out via Kranky (Tim Hecker, Dedekind Cut).
  • Vinyl LP (KRANK214LP)
  • £20.59 £16.47 (saving: £4.12)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Heinali
Iridescent

A new full-length album from busy Ukrainian sound-worker Oleg Shpudeiko, aka Heinali. Iridescent is mostly crafted out of modular synth improvisations, some of which are then reworked and re-ordered to created the finished pieces we hear here. Sometimes deep in ambient drifts, and sometimes pumping beats, this material is always strong for those who like some electronic adventure.

Jon Porras
Voices Of The Air

John Porras, of Barn Owl fame, was inspired by Gita Sarabhai and John Chowning’s writings on frequency modulation synthesis to make Voices Of The Air. Here he replaces his guitar with a Yamaha DX7 synthesiser, in order to explore more possibilities in the areas of focused minimal sound. Deep material, out on Ba Da Bing!

Hibernis
Middle Of The Meds

Hibernis drop an LP via Serein (Hauschka, Herzog). Middle Of The Meds is a record of ambient electronica that carries itself with a quiet intensity. John Hughes (son of John Hughes, director of Ferris Bueller's Day Off etc.) creates brooding instrumentals reminiscent of Susanna And The Magical Orchestra and the obfuscating synthscapes that characterise Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ work for screen. The way Lindsay Anderson then embeds her vocals in the mix is reminiscent of Grouper.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Cye Wood & Lisa Gerrard
The Trail Of Genghis Khan

Lisa Gerrard (of Dead Can Dance) and Cye Wood collaborated on this music as an accompaniment to the film The Trail Of Genghis Khan, a film about Mongolia seen through the perspective of an Australian man. Strings and voice build up the backbone of this record, creating sparsely beautiful atmospheres. Vinyl release on the splendidly named Infinite Fog label.
  • Vinyl LP (IF-75-LP)
  • £21.99 £17.59 (saving: £4.40)
  • In stock and ready to ship

The Orb
History Of The Future Part 2

Available on double CD or as a boxset with 3 CDs and DVD on Malicious Damage. Having announced a new album due in 2015, The Orb have released two retrospective compilations their work up until now. Including only released on vinyl tunes and unreleased video footage on the DVD, as well as completely unreleased songs "Baghdad Batteries Launch Night" and "Jam On Your Honey".

MKWAJU ensemble
KI-Motion

An unknown classic, KI-Motion is some of the finest percussion work you'll likely hear. Rhythms made meditative and minimalist, the MKWAJU Ensembl explored fertile ground in the world of ambience, influenced by the membership of legendary percussionist Midori Takada. A resonant masterstroke.

Dakota Suite & Dag Rosenqvist
What Matters Most

A slow, haunting new LP from Dakota Suite here. What Matters Most sees DS auteur Chris Hooson join forces with Dag Rosenqvist (Jasper TX) and former collaborator Emanuele Errante (Elem). With Hooson taking up the singer-songwriter's archetypal companions of guitar and piano, the other two augment his snow-slow songs with all manner of instruments and effects. They flush tracks like ‘Now That You Know’ with a mournful, glacial beauty that brings to mind a digital Bonnie 'Prince' Billy.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

A New Line (Related)
A Roomful of Lovers

Limited hand painted 7" following on from critically acclaimed Dead Albatross nominated LP on Home Assembly. Features an original cut of non-album track 'A Roomful of Lovers' plus a Miles Whittaker (Demdike Stare) edit.  A New Line (Related) is the solo project of Andrew Johnson (Remote Viewer, Hood) creating gorgeous, minimal swathes of ambient techno with nods to Deepchord and Gas. 
  • Vinyl 7"
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition

bvdub
Drowning in Daylight

The illustrious esquires at Apollo represent sadcore-ambient titan bvdub’s label of the week for Drowning in Daylight, a quadrilogy of teary twenty-minute longuns with right poetic titles. Now passing the thirty album mark, Brock Van Wey can be counted on for the skills to pay the bills and give your ears some cinematic thrills.
  • Vinyl Double LP (AMB1809)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy

Rhian Sheehan
A Quiet Divide

Rhian Sheehan is one of those ‘contemporary classical’ composers, which is a fancy way of saying you make music to be used in adverts for banks. Though we’ve never heard of him before it seems to be that he’s extremely popular in his native New Zealand. A Quiet Divide is an LP of thirteen tracks and that’s all we have to say on the matter.

Hekla
Á

Somewhat appropriate for an album of theremin and voice, neither of which being instruments controlled directly by the hands, to find its way onto the label Phantom Limb. Icelander Hekla’s debut is a peculiar one indeed, really testing the expressive and musical limits of the theremin outside its stereotypical usage. This results in often rubbery, repitched, resonating bits and blobs that bring to mind a sort of stripped-down, slithering Silent Shout by The Knife. Excellent.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Caught In The Wake Forever & glacis
Version & Delineation

Sowerby Bridge’s finest label, Crow Versus Crow, presents a tape of lovely, delicate music and sound. Version & Delineation combines the delicate, melodic, phone-recorded piano improvisations of glacis with fizzy electronic textures from Caught In The Wake Forever, resulting in some really nice, simple-but-deep pieces. Pro-duped cassettes.
  • Tape (CVC009)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

This Is Where
This Is Where

This is Where...We Came In might have been the Bee Gees swansong but this This is Where is a mysterious doom and ambient band who feature Norman Westberg amongst their number. Though they don't have the noisy brutalism of Swans the three piece have a musical dialogue dominated by tension and blissful density.  

David Sylvian & Holger Czukay
Plight & Premonition Flux & Mutability

The man once dubbed the Most Beautiful Man In The World...and ...er.. David Sylvian collaborated way back in the mid '80s on these two LPs in Can's home place of Koln in bleak midwinter. At the time record companies weren't bothered about such esoteric collaborations so now is a good time to revisit what the pair were up to. These beatless almost airless ambient albums  have now been collected together on a much needed re-issue and remastered for hopefully a more welcoming world.  

Ben Chatwin
Drone Signals

Former Talvihorros chap Ben Chatwin has not been content with releasing one album this year. Instead he has gone back to his sound sources for 'Staccato Signals' and created an entirely new work. 'Drone Signals' as you might guess by the title is a more ambient stretched out work that will appeal to all your drone and neo classical greats like Ben Frost and Max Richter. 

Silent Vigils
Fieldem

Thoughtful, patient and gentle ambient music from Silent Vigils. Fieldem is the first collaborative release of many from Stijn Hüwels on Home Normal, this time with James Murray. Together they craft a soundscape for reflection and remembrance, for hope and for forgiveness. 
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Penelope Trappes
Carry Me

Run the Trappes! The Penelope Trappes, to be precise. Having released her acclaimed debut LP Penelope One on Optimo last year, Trappes is now hot-footing it over to Houndstooth for the follow-up. To tide people over before Penelope Two (seems she’s got a thing going there) Trappes is releasing this 7”. It contains album track ‘Carry Me’ and exclusive tune ‘I Can Hear You…’. The former is a mournful, syrup-slow ballad in the Grouper vein; the latter a Gothic Colin Newman tribute. Carry Me also comes with a CD on which Abul Mogard turns the title track into a reverberant drone.

Less Bells
Solifuge

The location of Joshua Tree, California is important to Solifuge, the full-length debut by Less Bells. The dichotomy of summer monsoons and starry nights that the desert landscape bring inform the dramatic and desolate qualities of the music. The woman behind the project, Julia Carpenter, made the music by reshaping a classical string piece through a process of cut-ups before transposing the passages for the synthesizer. LP and CD on Kranky.

Volcov
From The Archive Vol. 2

Volcov’s first …From The Archive compilation was a tasteful collection of jazz-adjacent rarities that dated from as far back as the 1970’s. Two years on and the market for golden age soul-jazz/disco/funk reissues has become crowded, so Volcov has selected ten twenty-first century nuggets for the second installment of the series. The set, which includes tunes by Ron Trent and the Roy Ayers-affiliated Harry Whitaker, flows nicely between nu-jazz, neo-soul and hip-hop. All in all From The Archive Volume 2 is a fine bit of curation.
  • Vinyl Double LP (BBE399CLP)
  • £24.49 £14.69 (saving: £9.80)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Last copy
  • Label(s):
  • BBE

Haiku Salut
There Is No Elsewhere

Fresh from collaborating with Public Service Broadcasting on the very successful Every Valley LP, Haiku Salut come through with their third full-length. There Is No Elsewhere is a synthesis of the more palatable end of contemporary classical music - Yann Tiersen, the Erased Tapes and Village Green stables - with the light electronica of Mum and 20th Century British composers like Ralph Vaughan Williams. Out via PRAH Recordings (Oliver Coates, Group Listening).

Midori Takada & Lafawndah
Le Renard Bleu

The first new release from Midori Takada in almost two decades! Le Renard Bleu (translation: ‘The Blue Fox’) is a single-track, twenty-minute EP that sees the Japanese composer step out alongside NYC’s Lafawndah. Takada plays tuned percussion and also employs waterphones, Japanese strings and various drums in her composition. Meanwhile Lafawndah offers vocals that appear to draw strength from both Western and Eastern opera. It’s potent stuff.
  • Label(s):
  • !K7

Helios
Veriditas

Keith Kenniff returns under his Helios alias to bestow upon us a new album of ambient electronica. His modus operandi -- to work quietly, in the suburbs in the dead of night -- is reflected in the simple, serene calm of his music. It's a method that has served Kenniff well over the last decade or so of production; unhurried, using just the one mini-cassette tape machine for recording. Kenniff subscribes to Hildegard von Bingen's belief in "the greening power of the divine," and it shows in his soothing and centring work. Veriditas is a CD / LP on Ghostly.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Odeon
Galaxies

Captain’s log, star date 2018-02. We’ve received a transmission from the four-person crew of the vessel Odeon, in the Edizioni Mundo sector. Title Galaxies, it appears to be a series of immaculate references to psychedelic 1970s Italian film soundtracks and 1980s synthpop. It is clearly the work of some serious connoisseurs. We are not yet sure what this fabulous space music means, but we like it.

Tim Hecker
Haunt Me, Haunt Me Do It Again

'Haunt Me, Haunt Me Do It Again' is the debut album from the widely celebrated ambient musician Tim Hecker. It gave the world their first taste of his unique take on the genre, all atmospheric and noisy with hints of off-kilter sounds and drones bubbling underneath. Cascading waves of distortion and throbbing bass ease into lush, harmonious passages. An excellent first record from the ever-reliable musician.

Parekh & Singh
Science City

Parekh & Singh present their second LP, and boy is it lush. Science City perhaps lands somewhere between the gorgeous dream-pop of Beach House and the textured arrangements of Grizzly Bear: in any case, its eleven tracks make up a beautiful and rich listen. Science City  is released by the Peacefrog label.

Monoganon
VISITATIONS 0101

Lost Map (Lazy Day, Alabaster DePlume) kick off their new VISITATIONS series with an EP from old favourite Monoganon. The Scotland-born, Sweden-based artist John B. McKenna has turned in a record of delightfully unusual electronica here. Opener ‘Visitations 1’ is a strange bit of anti-acid that obliquely recalls Proc Fiskal, but following track ‘One By One’ is beautiful electro-pop that could pass for something off of Bon Iver’s second LP. On the flip, ‘Visitations 3’ and ‘Visitations 5’ are dubby Balearic takes.
  • Vinyl 12" (VISITATIONS 0101)
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

LFZ
Name Plus Focus

Making their bow on Castle Face are retro-futurists LFZ. Name Plus Focus arrives with the John Dwyer Seal Of Approval - probably par for the course given that it is being released by his label. One spin of this LP and you can see why. The icy, vaguely proggy synthscapes here are the sort of thing that has been creeping into Thee Oh Sees/Oh Sees/OCS sound for some time now. For fans of Italians Do It Better, or perhaps Wendy Carlos if you’re of a more classic disposition.
  • Artist(s):
  • LFZ
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

GAS
Rausch

You wait years for a new GAS album and two come along (almost) at once. Hot on the heels of last year's 'Narkopop' this is a different kettle of fish altogether, consisting of one long track which you are meant to listen to in one sitting. Wolfgang Voigt's work is ideal for this long form presentation. He's possibly less good at poetry though, so we won't reproduce in full the poem he's written to accompany the work.

Steve Hauschildt
Dissolvi

Former Emeralds synth wizard Steve Hauschildt returns with 'Dissolvi' the name taken from the latin phrase cupio dissolvi, meaning "I wish to be dissolved". Let's hope Steve isn't dissolved any time soon as here he presents another example of his work which contains techno pulses, synth haze, the voice of Julianna Barwick. 

Michiru Aoyama
Brilliant Days

Brilliant Days is the second release on vinyl from Japanese producer Michiru Aoyama. He lives by the sea in Kamakura, Japan, and this location informs his ambient music. Brilliant Days consists of two pieces of music made from electric guitar lines treated with electronics to create a serene soundscape. His work has been much praised by the legendary Japanese composer Ryuichi Sakamoto. Aoyama has also reinforced his knowledge of electronic music with a stint in Berlin as well as releasing work on Organic Industries, Taalem and Somehow Recordings.

Tropics
Nocturnal Souls

After LPs for Planet Mu and Innovative Leisure, the latest full-length from Chris Ward’s Tropics project drops via Plus Fours. Nocturnal Souls is an accomplished neo-soul album in the vein of his mates BADBADNOTGOOD - indeed, the celebrated jazz group crop up as backing band here. Ward’s fine songwriting style incorporates elements of the French New Wave, cosmic jazz, chillwave and even a little 'Reckoner'-era Radiohead. He’s got a great set of pipes on him too.

Klaus Schulze & Pete Namlook
The Dark Side Of The Moog Vol. 3

This is the third collection of tracks from Klaus Schulze and Pete Namlook entitled, you guessed it, The Dark Side of the Moog (Vol. 3). This one also brings about the composers differing electronic sounds and throws them together to create electronic master pieces. Available on double vinyl LP with an insert, and released on Music on Vinyl. 

Carl Weingarten
Living In The Distant Present

Carl Weingarten is a long underrated ambient slide guitarist. Hopefully, this reissue of his 1985 album, Living in The Distant Present, can change that. His music is deeply meditative, and will be comfortingly familiar to fans of new age music. Most impressively, Weingarten manages to find the ambient slide guitar equivalent of shredding. 

Negro
Clase media

Valencia’s Fernando Junquera, performing as Negro, is a solo guitarist whose mastery of his instrument allows his music to smoothly encompass a world of sounds, from American primitive to Tortoise-tinged post-rock to deep Loren Connors style ambience. Clase media is the third Negro solo album, and it is out on the La Castanya label.

Julien Boulier
A Film Not Yet Made

Julien Boulier’s new album is a fittingly-titled piece of highly-cinematic romantic grandiose miniatures: captivating stuff. A Film Not Yet Made is available in regular CD and LP editions, as well as a box set version that Time Released Sound themselves describe as ‘over-the-top’... red vinyl in a vintage box, with vintage 1860’s magazine cuttings, vintage french architectural plans, dried lavender, and a handwritten score. Well.
  • CD (TRS077)
  • £15.49 £12.39 (saving: £3.10)
  • In stock and ready to ship

  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Forma
Semblance

Forma return to Kranky (Grouper, Tim Hecker) for their latest LP. Semblance is another fine record from the Brooklyn group that combines their penchant for minimalist composers like Steve Reich and Jon Gibson with a contemporary modular sensibility. The likes of ‘Three-Two’, while not exactly being techno, have as much pulse and movement as any DJ tool. The trio maintain the control and focus of the best art-music ensembles throughout Semblance. Lovely artwork too.

Masayoshi Fujita
Book of Life

Masayoshi Fujita - an artist you may know better from his Jan Jelinek collaborations under the guise of El Fog - completes the trio of vibraphone LPs begun with 2013’s Stories. Book Of Life keeps the focus on the big metal xylophone while also incorporating a wider range of tertiary instruments than the Japanese composer has previously. Orchestral strings, choirs and brass crop up on these exercises in contemporary classicism. Out via Erased Tapes.

Kano
Runes

The first thing to say about this is that it’s not by the grime legend Kano. In fact, Runes is about as far away from ‘P’s And Q’s’ as it’s possible to get. Originally released in 1986 under the names of both Kano and Don Campbell - again, nothing to do with the Lover’s Rock singer - Runes is a spare, haunting record that teeters on the border between New Age music and ritual/dark ambient. Re-released by Subliminal Sounds.

Kodaline
Politics Of Living

Aha! B-Unique Records, is it? Wondered when we’d see you again. The London ‘indie’ label may never scale the dizzying heights of the time when it had The Kaiser Chiefs, The Ordinary Boys and The Twang on its roster, but at least now it can call on the services of workmanlike Irish rockers Kodaline. It’s probably not a coincidence that new LP Politics Of Living has been dropped at exactly the right moment to ride on the coat-tails of the Snow Patrol comeback.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Tanukichan
Sundays

A nice bit of shoegaze from Hannah van Loon’s project Tanukichan, channeling those Sundays vibes into some proper dreamy, though never lightweight, songcraft. The sound is very Californian and dreamy, with extra instrumentation beyond van Loon’s vocals and rad guitar handled by producer Chaz Bear of Toro Y Moi. Out on Company Records.

Tropic of Coldness
Framed Waves

Italian-American duo Tropic Of Coldness release their latest drone opus via Glacial Movements (bvdub & Loscil, Scanner). It’s a fittingly-named label for an album such as Framed Waves. This is a work of slow beauty built on sonic micro-shifts rather than abrupt changes. Hums, whirrs and groans drift over one another across these five lengthy entries, with the occasional spool of electric guitar added for extra poignancy.

Michael Beharie & Teddy Rankin-Parker
A Heart From Your Shadow

Michael Beharie of Zs and Teddy Rankin-Parker (a cellist who has worked with Steve Reich, Pauline Oliveros and the like) have known each other for years, but this is their first collaboration, and what a well-considered treat it is. Energetic and intricate music, mixed by the big man Jim O’Rourke. A Heart From Your Shadow is released by Mondoj.

Chihei Hatakeyama / Vida Vojić
FTS002

The second release in First Terrace’s split 12” EP series is from Chihei Hatakeyama and Vida Vojic, both presenting typically quiet and considered work. Chihei’s single piece is precisely as lush as you’d expect from this ambient guitar wizard, and Vida’s material is designed to be heard in utter darkness, derived from an exhibition. On First Terrace.

Christina Vantzou
No. 4

This latest LP from Christina Vantzou is a bit of a love-in. Getting together with Angel Deradoorian, Forma's John Also Bennett, Clarice Jensen and a fair few others, the Belgian composer allowed her collaborators to add or delete parts at will. Surprisingly, the record doesn’t feel cluttered, coming across more as the work of a hive-mind operating under Vantzou’s guiding hand. Tracks like ‘Some Limited And Waning Memory’, for instance, are full of the ambient minimalism and open spaces that characterised her three previous albums.

Kira Kira
Alchemy & Friends

Icelandic ‘audio/visual prankster’ Kira Kira presents a lavish release on Time Released Sound (Porya Hatami, Ghostwriter). It’s the usual Reykjavik sort of thing from Kira Kira here, though Alchemy & Friends does stand out from the Olafur Arnalds/Sigur Ros crowd for its patience and attention to detail. These are detailed experimental ambiences that draw from electroacousticism, drone, chamber music and more. Very nice indeed. The handmade packaging is lovely too.
  • Vinyl LP
  • In stock and ready to ship
  • Limited edition
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Stray Theories
All That Was Lost

If you like ambient music then you'll probably like this third record from Stray Theories called All That Was Lost. When Templeton-Wolfe isn't busy writing and composing material for other musical ventures, he gets time to release gold like this which will appeal to fabs of Hammock and Eluvium. Available on vinyl LP and CD and released, proudly must I add, on n5MD. 

Tim Hecker
Radio Amor

A new opportunity to experience the earlier work of beloved dronester Tim Hecker with this reissue of his 2003 second album Radio Amor. This one is focused and powerful, with perhaps a little less of the mellow counterpoints to the harshness that we find on later Hecker albums. Must hear stuff if you don’t know it already. On Kranky.

Klaus Schulze & Pete Namlook
The Dark Side Of The Moog Vol. 4

The Dark Side of the Moog (Vol. 4) is another compilation record from two great electronic composers: Klaus Schulze and Pete Namlook. Apart from looking rather cool on the record sleeve, the music is pretty damn cool, too. Available on a double vinyl LP with an insert, and released on Music on Vinyl.  

Pariah
Here From Where We Are

Pariah makes his long-awaited return with his even-longer-awaited debut LP. The reason that the one born Arthur Cayzer has taken so long to drop Here From Where We Are is down to the fact that, after getting a little jaded by music, he took time to rediscover the sounds that really made him tick. As such, this record is a nice mix of the sort of banging techno he does alongside Blawan in Karenn and synth ambiences, sound art and more. He sounds like he’s enjoying himself, which is nice. Out via Houndstooth.

Immersion
Sleepless

Immersion is the pairing of Minimal Compact’s Malka Spigel and Wire’s Colin Newman, dabbling once more in experimental goodness. Sleepless is beautifully put together, giving off nice kosmische vibes at times. The album also features some guest appearances, from members of Hexenschuss and Holy Fuck. Released on the Swim label.

Earthen Sea
An Act Of Love

Earthen Sea is the solo project of Jacob Long, also of the punkish outfit Mi Amo. The music he makes as Earthen Sea however is fairly different, being a form of dub techno that leans so far into ambient music that at times you can just forget about the dancefloor. Big wam sweeps of sound will swallow you up white the 4/4s keep you moving. New album An Act Of Love is released by Kranky.

Kutiman
Don't Hold Onto the Clouds

The multi-talented Kutiman drops a new full-length via his own Siyal Music imprint. Don’t Hold Onto the Clouds is, in the producer/instrumentalist/label-owner/animator’s own words, a record that helps him fall asleep. We can see why that’s the case - the four lengthy entries here are languid things that recall, among others, Moondog and Alice Coltrane. There’s also a clear influence of Indian classical music. It’s a dreamy LP for sure.

Tim Hecker
Mirages

'Mirages' is one of ambient musician and noise thrill-seeker Tim Hecker's earliest works, originally released in 2004. Back in the days of its initial release, Alien8 described the record as a "death metal ambient classic in waiting", which sums up the harsh, often dissonant soundscapes Hecker was interested in making in his early days. This record is glitchy, choppy and above all blunt, an unsentimental take on a musician who has gone on to make some of the most emotive ambient music out there. It's good to be evil sometimes, Tim. You can now grab 'Mirages' from Kranky/Alien8 as part of a lovely reissue initiative. 

C. Diab
No Perfect Wave

No Perfect Wave is a stunning tonal mix of bowed guitars and tape manipulation that creates waves of shifting drones that are melancholic yet beautifully uplifting, no tension, just resolve. Arthur Russell, Colin Stetson, and Godspeed You! Black Emperor but if they spent the week with Sigur Ros, you know, to cheer them up a bit.

Ben Chatwin
Staccato Signals

Talvihorros remains in hibernation while Ben Chatwin issues a third album under his own name for Village Green. This one began as an attempt to do a purely electronic analogue synth album, but that’s not really our Ben, is it? Acoustic instrumentation found its way into things sooner or later, and what you get is a record bubbling with analogue warmth and cinematic strings.
  • Genre(s):
  • Ambient / Downtempo / Dreampop

Steve Gibbs
Adrift

Steve Gibbs presents his debut album, although this may not be the first time you’ve heard his music. Gibbs’ more cinematic compositions have already appeared in film, TV and dance productions, and have been popular on Bandcamp. No surprise really, as his style mixes stately neo-classical piano and strings with subtle electro-acoustic tweakery. Adrift is released by Injazero.

Wolves in the Throne Room
BBC Session 2011 Anno Domini

Southern Lord drop an LP of Wolves In The Throne Room live cuts. For their 2011 BBC Session the Washington group surprised everyone by coming through with wildly different interpretations of two tracks from their Celestial Lineage LP (also 2011). Rather than performing ‘Prayer Of Transformation’ and ‘Thuja Magus Imperium’ as thick-as-tar black metal numbers that also function as paeans to humankind’s fatal failings, for this session the tracks are transformed into thick-as-tar black metal numbers that also function as paeans to humankind’s fatal failings … on ice!

Orchard (Aidan Baker, Gaspar Claus, Franck Laurino, Maxime Tisserand)
Serendipity

Another supergroup curation by ici d’ailleurs director Stéphane Grégoire, Orchard consists of Nadja’s Aidan Baker, Pedro Solo’s Gaspar Claus, Zéro’s Frank Laurino and Chapier Fou’s Maxime Tisserand. The quartet, strangers at the time of curation, hit it off with strong improvisations of ambientish post-rock - not unlike ol’ Tortoise. Appropriately, beautiful photos of an orchard comprise the artwork.