Machinefabriek – Halfslaap II

With great force of imagination, one can imagine,¬† a couple of performers playing and tweaking sounds over a looper, a synth, a violin, and other instruments, but the fascinating thing is, upon first listen, that’s the farthest thing from my mind. I hear houses collapsing, entire civilizations screaming out, and a lone violinist standing in a rubble heap; all from two sound artists working their magic to cohesion on this piece. If you can believe it, this piece is a recording of a live performance from famed Machinefabriek, pen-name of musician/sound artist and graphic designer Rutger Zuydervelt from the Netherlands. The only thing that breaks the spell is the applause at the conclusion. If you’re unfamiliar with Zuydervelt’s work, now is a great time to introduce yourself by following the above soundcloud link.

Erich

An eastern inspired, synth-meets-sax piece by US artist Spencer Doran, delivers simultaneously smooth and sharp edges in a palatable and surprising manner. It seems to me Doran intermittently adds these abrupt spots to help us listeners avoid a loss of interest and to more highly value the smooth tranquil malaise masterfully crafted here. The release this track is taken from, Reassemblage, is equally stunning and worth the listen.

Erich

Visible Cloaks – Music Interiors Vol. 2: Interni Italiani

Feeling totally ‘wowed’ by the huge array of artists and instrumentation heard here on this Spencer/Visible Cloaks’ mix. It’s hard for me to grasp completely how this was all consolidated but I’d like to share the statement they’ve attached to this album on their soundcloud:

“DJ Mix of Italian ambient/minimalist/avant-garde music, mostly emanating from institutions supporting the visual arts in cities like Milan and Rome: theatre production soundtracks, video installations, and architectural studies. Ethnographic plunderphonics, post-Battiato spiritual minimalism and hypnotic FM patterns, flowing with Mediterranean fourth world currents throughout.”

I know we’ve never once, and probably never again, shared a DJ mix, but this was a special case. I am filled with joy at the soundscapes collected here and wanted to share.

Dan

Rime Trails – Smoldering

This track “Smoldering” evokes a desolate landscape either on a forgotten world or, simply, forgotten on our own world. Long, understated, and sad or wistful, depending on your mood, this track clocks in at nearly 12 minutes, and from personal experience, I can tell you it makes good ‘study’ music. Danish artist Rime Trails published this track early in the year, but leaves us with virtually no background information, so my best recommendation is simply to keep checking back on their soundcloud.

Dan

Oliver Jensen – Rosemary

Feeling a little wistful here at polishdownpour and to cap it off I’m sharing this beautiful piece from Berlin via Sweden composer, Oliver Jensen, simply titled “Rosemary”. Some trickery happening with the instrumentation lineup which sounds greatly like harp, then piano, then strings, all weaving in and out; miraculously cohering to one another, lilting to make the mindflowers sway.

Dan

Blanck Mass – Silent Treatment

Sporadic and beautiful typically aren’t two terms that coincide in music or reality, but on this track from Blanck Mass, the two are inexorably adhered. Most words aren’t necessary here, and writer Benjamin John Power keeps the intelligible phrases to a minimum with just enough room to interpret for one’s self. World Eater, the name of Blanck Mass’ upcoming release is due out March 3.

Erich

Walter Maioli, Fred Gales, Pit Piccinelli – Amazonia 6891

This 17-minute clip offers us some insight into the highly experimental collection of sounds, field recordings, voices, etc., collected and arranged by Walter Maioli, Fred Gales, and Pit Piccinelli in the 1980s and resurfacing for public consumption recently. A deliciously immersive aural experience, the trio attempted to capture the true experience in both literal audible terms and psychologicallywith  in their arrangement of recordings. There are two parts to Amazonia 6891, each around a half-hour long and you can check them out in full on the black sweat label bandcamp here: https://blacksweat.bandcamp.com/album/amazonia-6891

Erich