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- Blowing Stones by Jam Money
8/10 Clinton Staff review, 13 November 2014
This is one of those albums that makes you glad that we still plough the underground looking for unusual releases instead of following the herd to the mainstream.
One of those albums where the makers seem to have made it for their own enjoyment - it's all over the place like the musical equivalent of someone making a patchwork quilt. The record is full of found sounds, wierdly plonked and plucked instruments, recorders are blown, things are hit, keyboards are stabbed. Its delightful lo-fi folky music which reminds me a lot of Woo, something of Tunng and a bit of the weird off kilter retro sounds on the Ghostbox label. There’s loads of tracks, none of then outstaying their welcome and quite often they are very delightful indeed. Its full of music box trickery, childlike plucked guitars and soft evocative melodies. Fascinating throughout.
9/10 ShaunCRogan Customer review, 2nd January 2015
As somehow this failed to make the 'best of' list for Norman Records in 2014 (shame on you all). I am compelled to balance this oversight and review this remarkable record. "Blowing Stones" is a patchwork quilt of loveliness and whilst I concur with the 'in house' view that you can detect Tunng and Ghost Box artistes in the mix I am also thinking that the sonic delights offered up here have links to slightly more 'substantial' works such as 'Another Green World' by Eno and the equally monumental "Millions Now Living.." by Tortoise (and also the musical excursions created by Yoffe when helming the 'Fingerbobs' tv series way back when). This is probably an arty record but in a good way, never overblown and the songs never overstay their welcome. It definitely can reside comfortably in the 'hauntology' genre if need be. Fans of Epic45, David Newlyn, Tape, Boards of Canada (can't have a review without a reference to BoC can we?), The Belbury Poly, and the aforementioned ambient/post-rock heavyweights will find much to love. The tracks slip by, often in a very unassuming fashion, driven by simple repeated patterns played on a variety of instruments but generally anchored by very thoughtful and deliberate guitar motifs and wobbly, blurred grooves that offer light and shade in equal measure bolstered by strange electronic noises, distracted hums, woodwind instruments and distant human voices (on occassion). Ultimately 'Blowing Stones' succeeds on the power of its own ideas, its warm organic sounds providing a much needed tonic to the soul, rewarding repeated listens by uncovering new sonic filigrees along the way. It always was one of the best of 2014 for me and deserves your ears. I hope they make another one. Rectify the oversight and get it in your mits.
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