A Different Synthesis: Julianna Barwick, Colleen Fuse Folk Tradition with Electronics [Videos]

The essential quality of electronic music is, in some sense, collage: drawing from multi-track recording, it is defined by the ability to put things together in records or performances in new ways. The contents of that collage need not always be drum machine beats or synthesized alien sounds. And so, many artists draw from a different well. Mentioning Georgina Brett last week prompted more reader recommendations. Two artists – one from France, one from Louisiana – exemplify the fusion of minimalist and folk traditions with electronic practice. And these two, each with a different spin on aesthetics and composition, also …

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New Music From Sheffield’s The Black Dog: Focused, Finely-Honed Objects [Stream, Video, Mix]

Out this week is a new full-length from The Black Dog. The Sheffield, England-based trio – Ken Downie, Martin Dust, Richard Dust – have been making smart, non-boring electronic music for ages. (Let’s not utter “IDM” – but “smart” fits.) From Warp to Ostgut Ton, they’ve been an indelible and irreplaceable part of the creative landscape. What strikes me about Tranklements is its effusive economy and clarity. In a time when music is regularly dripping with reverb or smothered in gauzy effects and nostalgia, this is a record that stands apart from any particular time, dry and direct and witty. …

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A Quick Jam in Arcade Music Gaming, Making Synchronized Beats

So, electronic musicians and dance music makers just push buttons, huh? Actually… why not? There are certain parallels between the synchronized, quantized grids of computer music and video games. Rhythms, aesthetics, and even interface have evolved in tandem. Early games even hard-coded synthesizers and scores into the same circuitry that made the music, and each has made its impact on the other. Game designers keep toying with this concept in game design. I gave a talk on interactive music in gaming last week at Berlin’s A MAZE Indie Connect. But here’s one person at that same festival who did one …

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Sound from Silos: Live Experimental Audiovisuals Rumble a Man-made Cave [Watch, Listen]

Electronic music, once the exclusive domain of secluded art laboratories, has now made the connection to clubs inseparable. The rhythms of dance music draw a line from popular to research; the software and gear marketed for dance musicians cross-pollinating with more experimental tools, as music styles, textures, and timbres mix, as well. But now, finding a way out of that club context and its restrictions may be as vital as the emergence from the lab years ago. Making connections between Argentina and Germany, across an international collective of audiovisual artists, FxLD’s latest project invades a disused grain silo in Berlin. …

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declicker

Digital Meets Organic in Beautiful Music Video for Roel Funcken [Schematic]

Abstract three-dimensional geometries: for many, they are the best expression of the rich imagery the mind’s eye produces when listening to music. But, with a growing heap of work that uses that material, artists have to push the details and execution to connect with the music. Last year, Michel de Klein did a beautiful realization of Dutch artist Roel Funcken’s “Mercury Retrograde,” out on Schematic; I’m surprised I’m only coming across this now. It recalls the classic music video for Autechre’s “Gantz Graf,” produced in 2002 by Alex Rutterford of Lost in Space and far ahead of its time. Here, …

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Kidsuke, the joint project of Kidkanevil And Daisuke Tanabe on PROJECT: Mooncircle, was one big highlight for us. Matt Earp walks us through other discoveries of 2012 that could be worth a permanent place in your early 2013 listening.

Under-the-Radar Music From 2012 Starts Your 2013 Right [Round-up, Listen]

The beginning of 2013 is as good a landmark as any to begin a return to music making and creativity. But the top-ten lists that crowded the Web in the last couple of weeks may not be your best guide. Instead of working out what’s “best,” we invited CDM’s music contributor Matt Earp, aka artist Kid Kameleon, to let us know what music found a permanent home in his music library – not just streaming, not just a one-time listen, but repeat performances. That seems an ideal way to give yourself some listening inspiration to fight the darkness (in some …

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Vienna in the snow, ca. 2008. Happy winter, Austria - this EP is a fitting soundtrack. Photo (CC-BY-SA) gego2605.

Cool Yule: Smart Austrian Ambient Electronica Album, Benefits Homeless

Call it experimental electro, ambient house… whatever the genre, Parque is smart, chilled-out music from Vienna. Full of cinematic cross-cuts and sharply-contrasted sound design, the EP “Amerika” is bathed in pleasantly-mellow melancholy. It’s only a debut, but an impressive one. The love and time put into production shines through. We’re pleased to introduce CDM reader Bene, aka Parque, to the site and listeners. And the Bavarian-born, Vienna-based Bene has a nice benefit in mind as he makes his holiday-timed release: All incoming proceeds until end of this year (minus Bandcamp and PayPal fees) will be forwarded to a Viennese homeless …

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hopecover

Hope: In Piano Gestures and Glitches, a Gorgeous Free Compilation from Japan

kaiwa; from mitsuru shimizu on Vimeo. Quietly melancholic piano gestures and reversed piano hammer strokes collide like waves against glitch-infused rhythms in hope3.0, the output of elementperspective. The “sound & design label” from Osaka weaves together a diverse group of promising Japanese artists, showing in many cases sonic maturity that belies their young average age. The balance between minimal, glittering piano prettiness and raw, digital rhythms is perfectly on evidence in the music video at top, for Mitsuru Shimizu’s triumphant “kaiwa;” – a real highlight of the set. The photographer and self-described “sound proposer” produces visuals and sounds alike here. …

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Inside a Beige Atom: Torann EP Sampler, Audiovisual Meditation from Dublin’s Lakker Duo

Torann EP Sampler from Lakker on Vimeo. Dara Smith sends this lovely, minimal meditation on particles drifting through space. I love that the visuals aren’t more active than they are, in fact, as if entering a beige, spinning atom. Ian Mc Donnell and Dara make up Dublin-based Lakker. Tracks: Summer Rains Mustard Crying Ciar Static & Amp One Note boomkat.com/search?q=lakker&fields%5B%5D= Built by the musicians in [Autodesk] Softimage ICE and Adobe After Effects – and I think nicely pairs the music to their visual aesthetic concept. More: www.lakker.com

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Inside a Beige Atom: Torann EP Sampler, Audiovisual Meditation from Dublin's Lakker Duo

Torann EP Sampler from Lakker on Vimeo. Dara Smith sends this lovely, minimal meditation on particles drifting through space. I love that the visuals aren’t more active than they are, in fact, as if entering a beige, spinning atom. Ian Mc Donnell and Dara make up Dublin-based Lakker. Tracks: Summer Rains Mustard Crying Ciar Static & Amp One Note boomkat.com/search?q=lakker&fields%5B%5D= Built by the musicians in [Autodesk] Softimage ICE and Adobe After Effects – and I think nicely pairs the music to their visual aesthetic concept. More: www.lakker.com

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