Kungens Män – Dag & Natt

 

dungens man

Nothing, as a word, can even begin to hint at what it truly means.

 

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Lamagaia

lamagaiaI mentioned of late that new/contemporary music is teasingly unlikely to make its way into my collection in the near future, but fortunately I’ve been sent 3 promos of late and they’re all good, damn good.

Lamagaia do this kind of repetition thing unto epic proportions, and the two tracks on here are feasts of sonic content, destined to unfold further upon each listen. The opening ‘Aurora’ is easily the heaviest thing I’ve heard them do, but they then go and do one of their more mellow moments on what I assume will be side 2 if you buy the vinyl.

Although they don’t sound like them particularly, they remind me of Oneida before their improv inflections began to dominate, what with their incredibly disciplined yet loose repetition, repetition, repetition. This is excellent music; perfect for our interesting times.

Goat – Requiem

requiemstill don’t quite know how to handle Goat, which may be a sign of genius on their part and/or stupidity on mine. I even wrote a 4-part opinion inspired by them not long after I started this blog. And continuing that relationship, I had this album in my Bandcamp wishlist prior to its birth and once it was out, I went to listen to it. After 6 songs, I removed it from my wishlist, but kept it playing anyway. By the end of the album I’d done a 180 and bought it.

What you may gather from that is that the best stuff is on the second half of the album, although my subsequent repeated listening has opened up many of the treasures to be found in the first few songs too. Not surprisingly, it’s the longer tunes that are my favourite; Goatband in particular emphasising a kind of Fleetwood Mac-having-a-jam feel, and is currently up there amongst my favourite tunes of the year.

The styles range from psych-tinged afro-pop to the aforementioned 70s behemoth approach, with occasionally hypnagogic moments to the melodies and regular snake-like rhythms. Indeed, one such rhythm it was that inspired my dive back into the Fela Kuti catalogue a few months back when it was the b-side on a recent single.

The back story might be a load of old bollocks, but the music is often great, as well as fun and thought provoking. I also think it would make a great soundtrack for dancing around campfires, something I need to do more often.

 

Fire! Orchestra – Ritual

2182-fire-orchestra-ritual-2lp-cd_19_2016-02-23-15-42-57 Honestly, what is it about Sweden?

You know when music is special when you listen to something whilst in the midst of a fairly drawn out grumpy period, and that music makes you feel alive, positive, and like all the petty crap really just does not matter, which it doesn’t.

People, I give you Fire! Orchestra.

I’ve been more and more of a jazz head, I must admit. This is where the genre really does it for me. It isn’t about technique, it’s about consciousness exploration. That’s why it’s a ritual. That’s why I consider music like this to be psychedelic, and a million revivalists who call themselves that to be not, although everyone has to start somewhere.

The opener, which you will find embedded in this post somewhere, is 10 of the fastest moving minutes in history, it feels like less than half that duration. To me, at least. This is music to get completely lost in. Throw maps in the bin.

There is a strong emphasis on the groove, the many horns don’t get in each others way, and the two vocalists are absolutely incredible.  The album is both propulsive and meditative, noisy and musical.

There simply aren’t enough superlatives to describe how I feel about this album. A true ritual, and a triumphant one at that. A perfect illustration of why humans picked up objects and started hitting, plucking and blowing them. Its purity makes it impossible to pigeon-hole.

This also makes for two posts in a row where the album cover seems somewhat random, although I think art purists will probably prefer the term collage.

Those who are inspired enough to want a physical copy will find one here.

Forndom – Dauðra Dura

forndomScandinavia, especially Sweden, seems to have an uncommonly large influence on the world of music. Much of what I have been exposed to could perhaps be ‘explained’ as the Swedes taking a form from elsewhere in the Western world, doing their thang with it and giving it back with a cheeky Swedish grin. It can be easy to forget they have their own traditions, but then I suppose it can be easy to forget that anywhere has its own traditions if the surface of the ultra-shallow Western Monoculture is to be believed.

A monoculture which tries to pretend death doesn’t exist. Which is an even bigger reason we need true artists around. Such as Forndom

Known to his mum as L. Sward, Forndom is a multi-instrumentalist, artist and photographer making music in the Norse ballad tradition set to a dark ambient atmosphere. There’s also quite a few tags around ‘death metal’ but you won’t find any detuned or distorted guitars here, just acoustic ones. And drones. And chants. And violins.

It is a very meditative listen, a sombre sound, and it is in no hurry to go anywhere. When you enter The Doors of the Dead, you’re on their time.

Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation

joplustl.jpgHere’s the one that nearly made the last year end list but for getting defeated by Pridjevi for the last place up for grabs. It seems that the late year releases are dominating my 2016.

If I had to describe this music, I would probably use reference points like Stereolab chatting to Laika whilst Garbage and Goldfrapp duke it out in the production chair, giving this a dance-pop dreamy edge. Opener Dunes epitomises this perfectly, motorik beat purring. The quality is superb throughout.

In a weird synchronicity, I’ve been planning this post for a while, my mate put a post up the other day which spurred this thing. Better late than not at all, eh? Anyway, I like this very much.