Five new reviews this week
Rone - Spanish Breakfast from InFine Music on Vimeo
Rone-Spanish Breakfast (InFine Music)(France)
Finally an effin electronic music album that is futuristic without being reduced to what I like to call Ornette Coleman like shouting. Instead of indulging the avant garde strokerati Rone keeps Spanish Breakfast in the realm of techno music. A mundane choice perhaps but this French artist dreams of a world where pop music is techno and that everything we know to be underground today is mainstream. From this egalitarian dance floor he constructs a phantasmagorical infusion of well-constructed beats and polished sounds from the world of techno and lazily drifting melodies of unknown origin. Some of it sounds Balearic and other times old school trance but a good chunk is from outer space I'm sure. There's a guest appearance by French sci-fi writer Alain Damasio on "Bora" and name checking by Lee Burridge and Sasha which leaves this guy Rone future potential to be obnoxiously pretentious. But for now leave it to this cat to somehow combine the nightclub so well with kicking it at home just chillin-in the same tune. It's manifesto without being difficult and Spanish Breakfast's creedo is the future now and that happens to be a vision I like.
Nic Fanciulli-Global Underground DJ-001 2xCD(Global Underground)(UK)
he did with James Maidstone, Kent is the birthplace of many superstar DJs including Toolroom's Knight brothers and none other than Nic Fanciulli. Unlike a lot of his English brethren though, Fanciulli seems to be shunning the progressive elements that have been ruining most of the decent mixes coming from the UK lately. If anything, he picks up where he left off on the more cutting edge One + One collabo he did with James Zabiela a few years back. In fact, he'seven a little more laid back than the last as he hooks up with hit maker Steve Mac for a slew of remixes and exclusive re-edits this time around. Nice to also see GU re-inventing themselves with this new series in a little more of the cutting edge vein ala Balance. Fanciulli answers the call by dropping one of the best commercial house mixes to come out in months. He simply covers so many different sounds and styles from techno to house with a little mnml and Detroit thrown in just to show you how cool he is but without being flashy or trendy. What you get is Fanciulli putting on a little three hour record selection clinic spread out over two disks. The results are agreeable.
Telepathe-Dance Mother (Iamsound)(US)
This clever little duo comprised of Melissa Livaudais and Busy Gangnes straddle the line between indie rock sassiness (which I hate) and dance music's future bent. The tension can be annoying at times when the two delve into silly little Stereolab-mocking forays. That homage shit always leaves me worried about the younger generations but when these kids striks out into more challenging directions such as "Chrome's On It" or "Devil's Trident" I'm far more intrigued. Sure that Dave Sitek cat produced this album and Dance Mother does have a lotta TV On The Radio damage shaping it-which you can take for it is worth-but here he's more like Ric Ocasek anyway. And logically Telepathe are kinda like Suicide or at least have heard one of Martin Rev's solo albums and are aspiring to some sort of his greatness. But to me they sound like the Tom Tom Club on "E"-pretty low stakes but good enough for a pop loving fool like me. File this one under interesting, right next to the Fiery Furnaces.
Mulatu Astatke/The Heliocentrics-Inspiration Information 3 (Strut)(US)
Hard to describe an album that combines the talents of a legendary Ethopian musician and composer with the nu jazz eccentricities of Stones Throw/Now Again artists the Heliocentrics. Exactly what the third volume of the Inspiration Information series is all about is elusive but what isn't elusive is the modern groove that keeps this album moving even during the most abstract Sun Ra laced explorations. Ethopian music legend Mulatu Astatke divines the direction of these fourteen long ass jam outs and the best comparisons I've found to date are Mahavishnu Orchestra versus Cinematic Orchestra with some heavy East African mojo. Each composition features traditional Ethopian instrumentation with UK combo the Heliocentrics acting as Astatke's able translators for western audiences (read: whitey crackerman). As always the roots-oriented direction of the Strut catalog is timeless and without fail- top notch. Hard to give this anything but two thumbs up for serious fans of jazz music.
Various-St. Patrick's Day (X5 Music Group)(US)
Rarely do I get music from my paid writing gigs worth a shit and this compilation is probably no exception. But if you are like me, an Irish American, then this 20 track compilation of Irish folk ditties will be a clunky connector to some distant and half-unknown past. Normally, I would dismiss such a comp for novelty crap but more than one of the tracks on this disk has remained stuck in my head for weeks. Hard to recommend this to anyone but others of like mind, however if you are of like-mind you should definitely check this compilation out. You will love it. I have included a link.