Discover Nordanvind, and the imaginative woman behind it, Fjaeder

Fans of northern sounds and nordic mythology, cock your ear for another label discovery. Nordanvind is the vinyl imprint of Swedish artist Fjäder. We profile the artist, the label, and then talk to Fjäder herself. Let’s first let her put us in an evocatively occult mood: In the eye of the storm Mithya spears Logos Shattering with a smile Suddenly I see all my faces I have seen the end of all things I slept a dreamless slumber… I have seen the end of all things I have seen the world reborn and crumble I have seen the end of …


Your Demoscene Moment: Organic Geometries, Acoustic Sounds, Beating Heart

Ah, so it turns out that demoscene animations don’t all have to feature bad trance music. (Sorry, had to be said.) Srdce is simply exquisite, fluid animations of blades of grass, waveform vibrations, geometric tangles, and the exploding fragments of a beating heart set to a touching song. It came in second at the Outline 2014 demoparty. Trans-cultural bonus: you get a (Slovak or Czech?) rendition of Emily Dickinson. “Srdce” means heart in Czech; the team originates from Slovakia. With beautiful instrumentation (banjo!), it’s a lovely way to spend two minutes. And all of this fits in 8MB of Windows …


Your Soul is Glitching: Impulse, a Chilling Visual Poem on Self and Tech

Impulse from gold extra on Vimeo. Don’t wait for the cyborg future. It’s here – embedded more deeply in ourselves than any googles or prosthetic. The words are from 1949 – Max Bense, a Cassandra on technology, talking about “technical existence.” The visuals are part stop motion, part digital effect and glitching edit. And the human actor is glitching, too – their face twitching with electrodes, a la Daito Manabe. (Don’t miss the beautiful, perfect sound score by Juan A. Romero, too.) But the sum of all these components is something chillingly poetic, a visual etude that imagines something hopeful …


Voice as Surface and Artifact, in the Experimental Drone Music of Jelena Glazova [Listen]

Experimental noise art, drone music, and other forms – whatever you might call them – can unquestionably be an acquired taste. Absent the normal landmarks of harmonic and rhythmic structure, they raise questions about just what makes form – and accordingly, as a listener you can be lost in a unpleasantly-formless mass. But in the music of Latvian sound artist and poet Jelena Glazova, as in the experimental sound I find most appealing, the experience is not cerebral so much as sensual. There is a conceptual background, but perhaps that’s what sound does so well: it can execute a concept …


Words and Music: New Brian Eno Coming on Warp, with Rick Holland Poetry; Listen Now to ‘Glitch’

Artwork by Brian Eno. Courtesy Warp. Used by permission. (Click for full-sized version. I like to get my eyeballs up against this one.) Packed tightly with interlaced rhythms, set against crisp cool intoned lyrics, the first cut of Brian Eno’s forthcoming “Drums Between the Bells” from Warp can give us all reason to look forward to the summer. Mr. Eno has been on something of a roll lately. We’ve certainly gone through periods when he wasn’s necessarily in command of electronic headlines in music, even as he contributed in other ways – the 90s brought pioneering work in generative music …


For the Record: Mobile Platforms, Music, and Partisanship

This is a New York City-produced set of haikus, so it’s accompanied by Brooklyn cherry blossoms. Photo (CC-BY-SA) Taís Melillo. It occurs to me that I tend to write long articles, and people don’t always read them closely. And sometimes I do indeed obscure my own ideas, so I’ll make this as clear as possible. James Lewin on Synthtopia responds to criticism of the iPhone, and differentiates his angle from my own. It’s well worth reading, and clarifies his thoughts, but there still seems to be some confusion about where I stand. I can spell it out. I’m really not …