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Classical / Neo-classical / Orchestral


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Nils Frahm
Spaces

Here’s something a bit different from everyone’s favourite modern minimalist pianist Nils Frahm, following mounting critical adoration for his most recent couple of albums. However Frahm felt that none of the existing recordings were really representative of his live performances, so he’s spent ...view item »

London Chamber Orchestra and Christopher Warren-Green
Minimalist: Adams / Glass / Reich

This LP on Warner Classics brings together the big names of listener-friendly minimalism: Steve Reich, Philip Glass and John Adams. Plenty of interlocking patterns and bright, clean pulses to be enjoyed here. We have ‘Eight Lines’ by Reich, ‘Facades’ by ...view item »

Zinovia Arvanitidi
Ivory

Now, here’s melody… Lots of melody. Those melodies for the most part emanate from the piano of composer-pianist Zinovia Arvanitidi, and her minimal orchestrations serve her well for the duration of her new solo record, Ivory -- sometimes introducing violin, cello and a rare sotto metallophone; even Zinovia’s own gentle, hushed...view item »

Peter Broderick
How They Are

Ole Peter is back. It's been a while since his last release. In fact we've just been discussing that it seems like it was more of a recent thing but it's actually his first commercially available release this year. Oh, and it's not even a proper album... It's a stopgap 7 track mini-album jobber which was written while he was on sabbatical with a...view item »

Max Richter
The Blue Notebooks

The neo-classical album I'm most fond of is this Max Richter LP on Fat Cat. He's a composer chappie who's had stuff out on BBC Recordings before so I'm told and this is just lush. Mainly consisting of pianos and strings it's just some of the most beautiful music I've ever heard.  It's very maudlin and it remind...view item »

glacis
The World Is A Little Lonelier Without You

Originally only available as a CD via Facture Records, this moving LP from Euan Alexander Millar-McMeeken aka glacis has been put to wax off the back of a Kickstarter campaign. Conceived as a tribute to the artist’s father who passed away in 2011, Hamilton works alongside friend Ed Hamilton to create these...view item »

Brave Timbers
Secret Hopes

The sound of Sarah Kemp's violin playing should be mounted and stuffed somewhere in a museum for future generations to get soothed by as the world gets more harsh. She has previously played with Lanterns on the Lake, Last Harbour, ...view item »

Jeremy Enigk
The Return Of The Frog Queen

Really really great album. This was Jeremy Enigk's first solo album away from Sunny Day Real Estate and it's a totally different kettle of kippers. This is wonderful baroque orchestral-pop with strings and all sorts putting me in mind of Cardinal and Richard Davies. This re-issu...view item »

Johann Johannsson
IBM 1401, A User's Manual

The JOHANN JOHANNSSON album 'IBM 1401 A Users Manual' has landed in my review pile. It's a thoroughly pleasant album this one. It makes me feel all big and grown up listening to classical music. It's a pipe and slippers job man. This has huge sweeping, epic strings galore and in places is not unlike the soundtrack to a BBC wildlife do...view item »

Johann Johannsson & BJ Nilsen
I Am Here

Abstract composers Johann Johannsson and BJ Nilsen combine for a pretty sweet slow moving soundtrack for the film ‘I Am Here’ starring Kim Basinger. Its typical moody soundtrack fodder, the album starts out dark and uneasy with a sense of foreboding, the eerie atmosphere is broken by some steady piano hits and swirling, sweeping stri...view item »

Goldmund
Occasus

Hello! It’s Jamie here, again. Time for my Top 5 Nouveau Classical Records of the Week rundown. Only joking, it’s really time for my review of ‘Occasus’ by Goldmund. Goldmund, or Keith Kenniff for it is he; he who is on occasion also ...view item »

Oly Ralfe
Notes From Another Sea

Oly Ralfe (of Ralfe Band) is truly showing himself off in a bright light here, on his debut solo album. That light is reflected and refracted in the clear composition and crystalline piano played by Ralfe throughout ‘Notes From Another Sea’. Yes, it’s a solo piano album. But it’s ...view item »

Jacaszek & Kwartludium
Catalogue des Arbres

I have some great stuff on this week. Last week was a little underwhelming but a new Touch release is always gonna to have this old pooch wagging his eager tail. I won't harp on too much about this guy's work. I have a huge place in my heart for the astonishing 'Treny' and also the 'Glimmer' album he delivered for Ghostly was pretty awe-...view item »

The Caretaker
Patience (After Sebald)

Finally the eagerly anticipated soundtrack work from Mister James Leyland Kirby's Caretaker pseudonym had landed. Apparently this was recorded prior to his last album 'An Empty Bliss Beyond This World. This is the score to film-maker Grant Gee's documentary about German writer WG Sebald. Havi...view item »

John Matthias & Jay Auborn
Pretoria Remixed

John Matthias (Derailer) joined forces with composer Jay Auborn to release Race To Zero through Village Green records in 2017, mixing modern classical with heavy electronic production. Here they bring Bristolian producer CUTS, Will Young’s (not th...view item »

Eluvium
Copia

Someone who utilises orchestral-ness with a degree of sheer brilliance and mastery is ELUVIUM.  Matthew Cooper (he who is Eluvium) makes the fantastic neo classical thing I've heard in some time. Copia is by far his strongest release and pretty much every track will have you delving for more tissues as you wipe the tears from...view item »

Pieter Nooten
Stem

Fourth album from Dutch ambient neo-classicist Pieter Nooten. Made in collaboration with Stephen W Tayler (who has worked with the likes of Kate Bush and Underworld) this is Nooten's most intriguing work in three decades. Subtle but still incredibly...view item »

Memory Drawings
The Nearest Exit

Memory Drawings are such a wonderful conundrum. A band of grayscale shadow-makers, they’re complemented with colourful musical timbres, their sound something like a heavy fall of snow coating itself over green grass. Their two previous records were melodic meditations that never got too grandiose, instead ruminating on compact post-rock me...view item »

Actress x London Contemporary Orchestra
LAGEOS

Following the single release of ‘Audio Track 5’ last September, Ninja Tune now offer up an entire LP of Darren “Actress” Cunningham’s collaboration with London Contemporary Orchestra, which first performed at the Barbican in 2016 (helpfully, ‘Audio Track 5’ is track 8 he...view item »

James Heather
Stories From Far Away On Piano

If you like the ‘post-classical’ ivory-tinkling of your Nils Frahms, your Max Richters and your Olafur Arnaldses, then this one’s...view item »

Christine Ott
Tabu

Gizeh good, Gizeh good… isn’t that how that Shamen song goes? Gizeh pretty good in this case anyway, following up French ondes martenot virtuoso, pianist and composer Christine Ott’s Only Silence Remains with her soundtrack to the 2012 film Tabu, a story of the south seas. To the unfolding un...view item »

Jóhann Jóhannsson
Englabörn & Variations

Ah this is sad. Johann Johannsson was personally involved with the preparation of this re-issue of his debut album in the weeks before his untimely death.  After consultation with his family it's been decided that the re-issue should go ahead and this works as a lovely tribute to the man. It now comes re-mastered and with a...view item »

Erik K Skodvin & Rauelsson
A Score for Darling

So here's 'A Score for Darling', which is -- spoiler -- a scored soundtrack to a film called Darling, an apparently emotionally raw tale about the life of a dancer. It's on the ever-reliable Sonic Pieces who love these slightly austere, reverential semi-orchestral soundbites; they've certainly pulled out the usual stops presentation-wise: check ...view item »

Hauschka
Ferndorf

Hauschka are back with their latest twinkle tastic album on Fat Cat entitled 'Ferndorf'. Immediately I can hear bits of Yann Tiersen in there. In fact if you're familiar with the Goodbye Lenin soundtrack there's definitely some washes of that in here.Very moving neo-classical sounding gear with a bouncy cheeky feel to it... almost playful in fact. ...view item »

Harry Partch
The World Of Harry Partch

Originally released in 1969 as part of Columbia’s Masterworks series, this album contains three pieces by one of the most idiosyncratic composers of the 20th century. Partch’s percussive, microtonal compositions, utilising outlandish custom-built instruments, display the influence of gamelan and Noh theatre. However this is very much...view item »

Echo Collective
Echo Collective Plays Amnesiac

Brussels-based Echo Collective have worked with the likes of Dustin O’ Halloran and Jóhann Jóhannsson, and are keen on bridging the gap between classical and non-classical. Here, they undertake this task b...view item »

From the Mouth of the Sun
Sleep Stations

Leftover stuff from the Hymn Binding and Menashe sessions is what we have here, showing a fuller and heavier sound than was appropriate for Menashe especially. Yes, it’s From the Mouth of the Sun, known individually on Earth as indefatigable drone cellist Aaron Martin and fizzy d...view item »

Luton
Black Box Animals

Lost Tribe Sound had better not rename themselves William Ryan Fritch Records after all - things are getting diverse again. Here Italian duo Luton slip out a little 200-copy run of their brooding new album Black Box Animals. It combines various orchestral arrangements with electric guitar, piano, electronics and other s...view item »

Steve Reich
Pulse / Quartet

Steve Reich’s office has a huge portrait of Steve Reich looking down benevolently on Steve Reich. Which is kind of like a Steve Reich piece, feeding off itself in a continuous loop. Where Quartet is full of energy and all over the place harmonically, Pulses is a more quiet work - especially for Reich stan...view item »

Nils Frahm
Wintermusik

Anyone into pianos should check out the Nils Frahm CD called Wintermusik on Sonicpieces (the last thing they did was a split CD by Konntinent which was ace). This is packaged in a lush little thick book style sleeve with a wee nipple inside for the CD to rest its weary shiny fat back on. I have to say if all CD's were packaged like this then the...view item »

Mario Batkovic
Mario Batkovic

Drone accordionist Mario Batkovic faces a world glaring at him on this self-titled record that posits his instrument in realms of experimentation it has perhaps never before experienced. We’ve seen minimalists strain their record beyond comprehension a few times before, most notably in Tony Conrad’s ...view item »

Delphine Dora
Eudaimon

Delphine Dora, fresh from recent collaborations with Sophie Cooper and Mocke, presents a new album of solo material. Dora’s approach to the piano, her voice, and her compositions embraces the strangeness and intimacy of everyday life and one’s inner thoughts. Eud...view item »

Goldmund
Sometimes

Goldmund, aka Keith Kenniff has apparently had great success squeezing his music into films and adverts and such, which makes sense in some ways: he writes very elegant, dramatic piano music. But also, most of Sometimes is just as dark as the sleeve art suggests: I can’t imagine many of these trac...view item »

Hauschka
Foreign Landscapes

Anyone looking for a fix of modern classical music should know that Hauschka is reliable; a master of prepared piano who on 'Foreign Landscapes' has enlisted 12-piece ensemble the Magik*Magik Orchestra. He arranges their orchestrations around his piano and the result is as dramatic as you could expect adding support to the lonely piano tinklings...view item »

Kjartan Sveinsson
Der Klang der Offenbarung des Göttlichen

Der Klang der Offenbarung des Göttlichen is a grand operatic work by Kjartan Sveinsson, who you might know from his time in Sigur Ros. This, however, is a full-blown orchestral suite, with romantic themes dominating both music and libretto. This recording of the piece is released as a double 10&rdq...view item »

Olafur Arnalds
Found Songs

OK I've finally been smacked in the face by the charms of Olafur Arnaulds. His Found Songs mini album is one of the most moving albums of neo classical music I've heard in ages. It really is the soundtrack to the saddest moments in your life. Normally the office is full with people talking stuff and nonsense but when Olafur came on it commanded sil...view item »

Christina Vantzou
No. 2

As our resident drift-core/neo-classical/everythings-ok-electronica expert is in hospital with a malfunctioning gall stone, I have been passed this weeks slower releases to pore over. Forgive me though as I have the attention span of a gnat, I couldn’t even sit through the entire Bruno Mars performance on t...view item »

Steve Reich
Drumming, Six Pianos, Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ

Never shying away from blunt titles Steve Reich’s Drumming, Six Pianos, Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ is exactly that. Drumming alone is a nearly 90 minute piece revolving around drums xylophone and glockenspiels. The lord of repetition and subtle dynamic change in full swing. First time ...view item »

Jessica Curry
Dear Esther (Original Game Soundtrack)

This is the first ever pressing of Jessica Curry's soundtrack to genre defining video game Dear Esther released to coincide with it's 5th anniversary. Dear Esther is an award winning first person exploration game with a stunning specially commissioned soundtrack by Curry.   The vinyl comes wit...view item »

Mary Lattimore
Hundreds of Days

Will the good times never cease? Philly harp legend Mary Lattimore continues her endless slew of good releases with Hundreds of Days, her second for Ghostly. Exploring the alien feeling that gets pronounced when you leave home, her plucks offer microcosmic and resonant ways to work your way ...view item »

Theo Alexander
Broken Access

Pianist and tape loop aficionado Theo Alexander offers up a full-length of carefully constructed pieces for Luau Records. Loops of macro-recorded piano build up, hammers flickering away pleasantly and tape hiss’d background noise leaking in, to create mixtures of phrases. Suitable for rainy afternoons, lonesome evenings, c...view item »

Carlos Cipa & Sophia Jani
Relive

Featuring two original piano compositions for four hands, Relive is a gentle yet dramatic, spectacular yet subdued, piano composition. That’s a lot of adjectives, but Carlos Cipa and Sophia Jani have created a two pieces of piano music that draw the listener in, know when to stop for silence, and ...view item »

Nils Frahm
All Melody

Referred to affectionately as “the Frahmster” by my bothersome boss, Nils Frahm is the holy ghost in Erased Tapes. He’s done a whole lot more for neo-classical than you have, so pay some damn respect. Max Richter don’t read this. His new record is called ‘All Melody’ but there...view item »

Erasure
World Beyond

The legendary synth pop duo had their seventeenth album released last year on Mute. This surprising and intriguing set of reinterpretations features a Belgian ensemble linked to several modern classical outfits and composers. What you get is Erasure's classic ethereal dance-pop done up in graceful orchestral timbres. Lovely....view item »

Nightports with Matthew Bourne
Nightports with Matthew Bourne

Matthew Bourne, then. Which side of Matthew Bourne will we be getting here, the melodic Matthew or Experimental Matthew? Or both? This latter option would appear to be the case, for the Nightports project -- Nightports being the name of the challenge put to Bourne by Adam Martin and Mark Slater. This most Piano of keyboard men recorded the piano...view item »

Nils Frahm
The Bells

That last CD by Nils Frahm on Sonic Pieces was a rip-roaring success and Kning Disk will be hoping The Bells is able to to repeat the trick. Essentially it's more of the same neoclassical solo piano improvisation but that's not a criticism at all, the guy's obviously hugely skilled and always a pleasure to listen to. It's helping brin...view item »

Nils Frahm
Felt

The Nilster is back with a brand new studio new album on Erased Tapes and it's the difficult 3rd album! From the off I can tell it's a much richer album than previous albums as there's more than just piano on it. The opener with its Tubular Bellsy xylophone is really rather splendid. There's a...view item »

Erland Cooper
Solan Goose

Prolific multi-instrumentalist Erland Cooper—also of The Magnetic North and Erland and The Carnival fame—defies genre categorisation, his eclectic sound ranging from electro experiments, lilting folktronica and evocative poetry set to classical tropes. This vinyl release, out on Phases, explores his Scottish origins,...view item »

Tindersticks
Tindersticks (2nd album)

Tindersticks reached new dramatic heights with their eponymous second studio album. Thematically, it covers the same profoundly dark territory as their debut album, the key difference being that their previous minimalist, guitar ridden aesthetic is surpassed by more outspoken deliveries backed by boastful, soaring arrangements. Tindersticks II i...view item »


Expo 1

A compilation of some of the greatest works from some of the greatest composors in the neo- classical genre. With tracks from Philip Glass, Ólafur Arnalds, Max Richter, Jóhann Jóhannsson, Ludovico Einaudi (CD only) and many more. A showcase ...view item »

Lionlimb
Tape Recorder

Tape Recorder is one of that albums that insidiously creeps up on you without really announcing its presence. Each time it has been played in the office I've got up off my chair, walked over to the CD player to find out what was going down. This has happened 2-3 times. The main reason for my interest has been that it's second track has all the s...view item »

Tale Of Us
Endless Remixes

Berlin based Italians Tale Of Us released Endless through Deutsche Grammophon in 2017, with these remixes not long after. Now we are brought them on double vinyl in limited form. Taking their ambient electronica and putting them through their own inimitable styles, the remixes come from the likes of Alva Noto...view item »

John Grant
John Grant and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra : Live in Concert

Lucky John Grant got to perform with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in October and now Bella Union are releasing the recording into the world. The double cd set features a range of his material rearranged with help from Fiona Brice (Placebo, not the newsreader) ...view item »

MMMD
Andromache

This newest tape from the renamed and retooled MMMD sees the duo working in homage to “an unforeseen friend”. Info is sparse, but it’s a quaint and seemingly personal follow-up to their recent monolith of a triple 10”: here, they replace chamber for bedroom, ditching the daunting stirrings of cello and bass that have mark...view item »

MONO
Hymn To The Immortal Wind

This is the first Mono album to feature a full orchestra, and that provides the album's pronounced magnitude. The agonizing, climbing guitar parts stand amongst swaying, buttressing cellos and violins by the dozen, while flutes and glockenspiels liven those quieter moments. It is especially impressive that the orchestra is not used merely as a s...view item »

Harry Partch, Gate 5 Ensemble
And On The Seventh Day Petals Fell In Petaluma

To mark its 50th anniversary and the first full reissue for the record in those five decades, it was high time 'And On The Seventh Day Petals Fell In Petaluma' was re-pressed onto lovely crisp new 180-gram vinyl. Previously only excerpted, it's a rare instrumental record from Partch; his sparse and skeletal rhythms perf...view item »

Laurie Anderson & Kronos Quartet
Landfall

Substantial collaboration between musician and spoken word storyteller Laurie Anderson and San Francisco’s Kronos Quartet. Landfall, a multimedia project inspired by Anderson’s experience of Hurricane Sandy, blends skillful instrumentation with her powerful spoken word descriptions of the storm. On N...view item »

Adrian Lim-Klumpes
Yield (Preludes & Fugues for Piano)

Adrian Lim-Klumpes has previously plied his piano-man trade in the bands Triosk (for the Leaf label) and most recently in Tangents, working the keys in a loose, jazzy way. Here, he’s solo, he’s at one with his Steinway Grand, he’s channeling Debussy; and it’s all...view item »

Niklas Paschburg
Oceanic

What do we have here? Well, it appears to be an album chock-full of wondrous melodies performed on (mainly) piano with some soft and fluffy electronics for those keys to gently bed down into. 23-year-old German composer-keyboardist Niklas Paschburg was inspired by the nature he observed unfolding around him for this record; he says (softly): &ld...view item »

Eyvind Kang & Jessika Kenney
Reverse Tree

Jessika Kenney and Eyvind Kang bring in several of their many frequent collaborators to contribute to their new album Reverse Tree. These include heavyweights like Ilan Volkov and Hildur Gu∂nadóttir, plus the omnipresent Oren Ambarchi. Two s...view item »

Jherek Bischoff
Cistern

Jherek Bischoff is a composer who has helped do all those Bowie tribute things in New York of late which means he must be something dead special. He also recently clambered into a massive water vat in order to improvise the pieces that have become 'Cistern'. No toilet jokes.     First up, what a fresh new way ...view item »

Max Richter
Hostiles (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

You sure can count on Max Richter to deliver works of sweeping cinematic power, and so it's no surprise that he has increasingly been composing music for actual cinema. Hostiles...view item »

Robert Forster w/ Jherek Bischoff & String Quartet
People Say

Here's an interesting curio. Robert Forster (the Go-Betweens/World's Most Dapper Man) played a selection of songs arranged by Jherek Bischoff at a festival way back in 2013 but they didn't get released. Finally a couple of them see the light of day, the Go-Betweens early day classic 'People Say', backed with 'In...view item »

Arvo Pärt
Fur Alina

Arvo Part is a contemporary classical composer who just cuts through the barriers, being experimental enough to attract a certain audience and sheerly beautiful enough to entrance another. Mississippi here present a collection of their very favourite Part pieces, scored for a variety of groupings, from solo pian...view item »

Angele David-Guillou
En Mouvement

This is the second full length album from Angele David-Guillou following albums as Klima and as a member of Piano Magic. Right from the get go it's a heart stopping series of prime neo-classical compositions that dig deep into the work of the likes of Phi...view item »

Johann Johannsson
The Mercy (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Aside from his solo output and numerous collaborations, Jóhann Jóhannsson has been growing a long list of film scores, including Arrival, Prisoners, and The Theory Of Everything. His latest is this score for James Marsh’s The Mercy, about the infamous saili...view item »

Esmerine
Mechanics Of Dominion

Oh, this is lovely. From the opening strains of bowed, vibrato cello and fluid tinklings of piano all the way up to its dramatic coda. Continuing their trend of a new and remarkable record every two years for I-can’t-tell-you-how-long, are Esmerine -- the set-up of members from GYBE...view item »

Tim Hecker
Dropped Pianos

Apparently Tim is at the top of his game and has been for years accordingly to the press release. Slightly confused by that sentence...I would say that he's made some excellent records over the last few years and Ravedeath 1972 is nothing short of brilliance. Dropped Pianos is 9 tracks w...view item »

Yair Elazar Glotman
Études

The double bass is an instrument that has struggled to escape from the world that created it - the ruthless traditionalist institution of Classical music. Jazz was its ray of hope, but that soon formalised into something not too far away from the Vienna schools. Yair Elazar Glotman is a child of this system who realised that you can actually do ...view item »


Erased Tapes Collection VIII

Robert Raths' London-based institution Erased Tapes marks a decade of bringing us great -- sometimes avant-garde -- music, with their Collection VIII. They've said the transparent vinyl double-LP set is 'highly limited'. Many notable favourites: Winged Victory, Rival Consoles, Daniel Brandt, Penguin Cafe, Ben Lukas...view item »

Francis MacDonald
Hamilton Mausoleum Suite

Teenage Fanclub drummer, Francis McDonald has strayed into very different territory here. Wearing his songwriter/composer hat, he has composed, arranged and produced a piece of chamber music inspired by the Hamilton Mausoleum. The Hamilton Mausoleum Suite was also recorded in the historic building that stands pr...view item »

Eluvium
False Readings On

Some of us are just trusty. Reliable, but little more; never change, but see you never. I feel that Matthew Cooper, many years into his career of ornate and bewitching post-rock ambience, has become one of those types. So I’m asking you to get excited about a new Eluvium record, for his sake: forget that you’ve heard his music many t...view item »

Lori Goldston
Music for Etudes N°11 Runway Show

Lori Goldston is perhaps the premier cellist in America’s alternative rock scene, having played with Nirvana, David Byrne, and as a core member of Earth...view item »

Philip Glass
Heroes Symphony

Based on one of David Bowie’s most avant-garde, experimental albums ‘Heroes’, the album ‘Heroes Symphony’ (aka ‘Symphony #4 “Heroes”’) was produced by American composer Philip Glass in 1996. Comprising a rich orchestra of string and wind instruments, Glass approaches the material from the opp...view item »

Steve Reich / Terry Riley
Six Pianos / Keyboard Study #1

Six Pianos is a Steve Reich piece for, uh, six pianos, originally composed in the 70’s. Presented here is a brand new 2016 version produced by overlaying six pianist’s separate recordings, with personnel including Hauschka and two members of Brandt Brauer Frick. Supporting t...view item »

L. Pierre
1948-

I'm not sure how our customers are going to deal with this. It's going to be shipped as a 'naked' LP without any sleeve whatsoever so it can get worn and altered by the elements. For those of you who complain when your vinyl gets wafted by the wrong kind of air then please look away now. This also is L. Pierre's last recording. As we all...view item »

Olafur Arnalds
Eulogy For Evolution 2017

Now very famous indeed composer Olafur Arnalds has gone back to his roots and reworked this his debut release with the help of friend Nils Frahm who took charge of the remastering. Seeing as though the original album transported the listener from birth to death we wonder if there's anything else that can be sque...view item »

Akira Rabelais
Spellewauerynsherde

Originally a CD released on David Sylvian's Samadhisound label back in 2004, this is the first-ever vinyl edition of this beautifully haunting album. Akira Rabelais uses his self-built Argeïphontes Lyre...view item »

Mario Diaz De Leon
Sanctuary

Mario Diaz de Leon presents his classical composition side with this recording of the single album-length piece Sanctuary, recorded with TAK Ensemble. As w...view item »

Oliver Coates / Eliza McCarthy
Micachu - Peace / Riding Through Drinking Harpo Dine

Here on the most lamentable of formats, the 7", lie two new Micachu pieces. The sonic polymath also known as Mica Levi has crafted two instrument-specific compositions for performance by cello surgeon Oliver Coates and formidable pianist Eliza McCarthy. Two excellent works rounded off...view item »

Matt Dunkley
Cycles 7-16

Matt Dunkley's continuation of orchestral works sees the modern composer utilise a variety of styles, at times verging on the grandiose, always retaining a filmic drama. Fans of Max Richter will be pleased to notice a yearning melancholy, the slow fluttering strings of 'Cycle 11' being a good case in point....view item »

Michel Banabila
Early Works : Things Popping Up From The Past

You honestly don’t want to work in our office. The rubbish.... the….tripe we have to listen to. I’ve just escaped from half an hour of someone going ‘oooooohhhhhhhh’ like its Halloween or something. Whilst playing the opening track of this compilation I unplugged my headphones le...view item »

Sweeney
Middle Ages

Australian artist Jason Sweeney comes through with a gorgeous LP for Sound In Silence. Taking piano and voice as his starting point, Sweeney uses both organic and electronic instrumentation across Middle Ages to grow his torch songs into beautiful things that feel at once both widescreen and intimate. T...view item »

Brambles
Charcoal

Ooh, a new release on Serein which is undoubtedly a label of quality! I’m feeling a little hyper after my peanut butter Kit Kat chunky so you’ll have to excuse my excitement. Brambles are a new artist to me but those regular readers will know that the...view item »

Matthew Bourne
Isotach

Isotach. A line on a map connecting points of equal wind speed on a graph... So it’s welcome back, local man -- and apparently weather-obsessed -- Matthew Bourne. That Yorkshire does have some weather, right enough. Mostly w...view item »

Sylvain Chauveau & Chant 1450 Renaissance Ensemble
Echoes of Harmony - Early Music Reworked

Tireless, archive-fevered Belgian juggernauts Sub Rosa are up to their neat old tricks again. This time, seldom-heard Spanish Renaissance works of the manuscripts of Cancionero de Colombina and Cancionero de Palacio are reinterpreted by minimalist electronic heavyweight Sylvain Chauveau and Chant 1450 R...view item »

Apparat Organ Quartet
Polyfonia

Ever since the promo of this turned up in the office a couple of weeks back I've been well excited about this one dropping, and I'll most certainly be taking the vinyl home with me tonight. You'll know Johann Johannsson best as Iceland's leading minimal composer, but on this here record he's p...view item »

Jim Copperthwaite
Ballroom Ghosts

Jim Copperthwaite presents his debut full-length album on the Village Green label. Evocatively titled Ballroom Ghosts, this album is full of really rather beautiful and intimate compositions that combine Jim’s movie soundtrack experience with some Reichian repetitive pulses. CD an...view item »

Ryuichi Sakamoto
async

‘async’ is the latest album by Ryuichi Sakamoto. This release shows us how far he has come and how far he is willing to go to break the boundaries of different sounds and textures. A fifteen-track masterpiece that brings together classical, neo-classical and orchestral music. Available on Vinyl Double LP and...view item »


The Sound of Arvo Part

This new Arvo Pärt disc on Warner Classics is presented in a slightly new-age kind of way (the press release uses the phrase “sonic detox”), but don’t let that put you off. Pärt is a composer of rich and excellent music: this disc features pieces like ‘Fratres’ and ‘...view item »

Luke Howard
Sun, Cloud

Sun, Cloud has previously only been made available in Australia, but no more! Now us UK folks can enjoy Luke Howard’s music for ourselves. Piano is firmly at the centre of these compositions, spinning delicate neo-classical melodies into the air, where strings, electronics and field recordings mingle and add textu...view item »

The One Ensemble
Saint Seven

Don’t worry, this record has got absolutely nothing to do with the BBC telly program ‘The One Show’. Mercifully not anodyne; it’s every bit as entertaining, also it’s just as hectic-sounding as my mind has been all day today. The One Ensemble (formerly ‘The One Ensemble of Daniel Padden) are a quartet of music...view item »

Those Who Walk Away
The Infected Mass

This one marks the start of a brand new year for my ever-beloved Constellation Records, who are setting themselves up to have another beautiful banner year. ‘The Infected Mass’ is the first entry on the imprint for Matthew Patton, a sound artist and score dabbler who’s recently written music for dance pieces and orchestras. Her...view item »

Jozef Van Wissem
Nobody Living Can Ever Make Me Turn Back

Jozef Van Wissem, with his customised lute, can always be relied upon to deliver a gothically romantic atmosphere with his compositions, and Nobody Living Can Ever Make Me Turn Back (with track titles that include ‘The Empty Cup Of Suffering’ and ‘Out Bones Lie Scattered Before The Pit’) fully de...view item »

Scott Walker
Tilt

Well, I’ve been given the mammoth task of reviewing this absolutely now legendary album by Scott Walker, Tilt. Although many people think they are familiar with Scott’s music, this will change their perception entirely; although his velvet voice is still there, this can be a very uncomfortabl...view item »

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