Photo Courtesy of The Flenser
By the time Randall Taylor, who records under the name Amulets, reveals a whispered voice speaking on “Whirl,” the closing song of his new album Blooming, a full sonic narrative focused on the cyclical nature of life has already unfolded without a single lyric being sung.
An audio/visual artist based out of Portland, Taylor fills his Flenser debut with reverb-soaked guitar melodies and distorted production techniques to build up compositions that channel the natural forces that are quietly at work around us everyday such as rebirth, growth and human adaptability. Continue reading Amulets creates an unfurling world of rebirth on Flenser debut, Blooming →
Photo Courtesy of NNA Tapes
Decomposing Force, the latest LP by New York noise-jazz trio GRID, plays out like a guided workout session for the ears.
Composed of four tracks that span 42 minutes, the band’s sophomore album will heighten listeners’ heart rates with blaring saxophone wails, frantic bass fretting and disjointed drumming before easing them into a cooldown during its slow-burning back half. But, like a real workout, every part won’t exactly be enjoyable. Continue reading GRID’s second album, Decomposing Force, will give your ears a workout →
Photo Courtesy of Northern Spy Records
The bustling, unrestrained soundscapes created by The Necks are unmistakable. Since the late 80s, the Australian trio has blended jazz, ambient and experimental music to form lengthy, hypnotic pieces. And by developing an instrumental formula of piano, drums and bass — with the occasional organ and guitar — the band has won a dedicated following that seems to grow with every new album. Continue reading The Necks ponders its identity and legacy on Three, a personal album that’s as accessible as it is challenging →
Photo Courtesy of American Dreams Records
To interpret a piece as celebrated as Claude Debussy’s La Mer is a bold undertaking for any musician, even those as accomplished as Tosconini, Bernstein or John Williams. And further, to successfully adapt it into a different style of music comes with its own set of challenges.
But the decision by Forest Management, the Chicago-based music project of John Daniel, to sample and recontextualize the famous symphonic sketches into an ambient double LP feels wholly appropriate. After all, Debussy valued sound and texture over melody and progression much like today’s ambient artists. “There is no theory. You merely have to listen,” Debussy once said. “Pleasure is the law.” Continue reading Forest Management explores the formidable landscape of night on its new classically-inspired double album After Dark →