Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Album list, 2014 - 2015

Panda Bear - Meets the Grim Reaper LP, Crosswords EP
Three albums in a row and I still love Noah Lennox's mixture of experimental synthesis, cavernous production and Beach-Boys style melodies. Plus his lyrics about his everyday life are kind of moving and I really relate to him.

Cassegrain - Centres of Distraction
A kind of hard minimal techno, I find it mesmerising. I crossed a couple of techno albums of my list because they didn't reach my g-spot, but this one turns me on.

Blanck Mass - Dumb Flesh
This is the best album from team Fuck Buttons since Tarot Sport. It sounded a bit more Fuck-ish to my ears than the first Blanck Mass album, and I love the way it occasionally explodes into pyroclastic flows of pure noise.

Lakker - Tundra 

I liked how this album was varied, sometimes ambient and gentle, at other times abrasive, but it seemed to hang together.

Marreck - Cetology

Screeching resonant synthesisers, pretty much no melody, only rudimentary drums when there are any at all. It is barely music in the traditional sense, but it is exciting and it really communicates in its own language. Probably the most abstract music I've enjoyed in a while, and a highlight of 2015.

Tame Impala - Currents
I usually get carried away by the hype of the year's Tame Impala release, but after a few months I find I have no desire to revisit it. This one might be the exception. They've paid their psychedelic rock dues, and they display the receipt as they make a record that sounds at times like it could have been made by Pet Shop Boys.

Andrew Hung - Rave Cave

The other half of the Fuck Buttons gave us the lushest sounding chip music ever.

Leon Vynehall - Music for the Uninvited

Track 2, "Good Thing" is a dance floor stomper, but for this sort of thing to work, it has to find its way to the heart as well as the feet. "Inside the Deku Tree" is the runner up for the videogame reference of the year award. (Panda Bear's "Shadow of the Colossus" wins it).

LFDM - M is a Shape

Gorgeous sounding analog synthesis, vintage drum machines, and the abundant use of cavernous-sounding fifths, make this an album of machine music which appeals to the brain and the soul.

Luke Abbott - Wysing Forest

Perhaps I wouldn't like this so much if I hadn't seen Luke Abbott's nice nerdy glasses and his penchant for sensible knitwear. It just seems to enhance his rather epic, improvisational approach to analog modular synthesis.

Traumprinz - All the Things

I can't keep up with genre taxonomy, but I think this might be what you call deep house. The track with the subtly intensifying groove and a spooky, disingenuous-sounding voice of a guy telling the story of how he gave up drugs for Jesus is the best. 

Mattheis - Luminous Frames

This is a lovely-sounding ambient album with heavy overtones of classic Krautrock.

Donato Dozzy - The Loud Silence

I've really enjoyed most of the music I've heard by this guy, especially "Voices from the Lake" and "Plays Bee Mask". This one takes his sound further into weird territory, sometimes it's just a repeating note, but it's the space and the atmosphere that makes it work.

Acronym - June

Like a lot of ambient music, it disperses from your brain when you switch it off. But when it's on it fills the room with sweet sonic perfume.

Ekoplekz - Unfidelity

Ekoplekz - Reflekzions
These are the 2014 and 2015 albums by Ekoplekz. Once again there's a real sense of space in these productions, but the melodies and rhythms also sneak up on you after repeated listens.
Floating Points - Nuits Sonores EP, Elaenia album

My ear is not good enough to tell if the Rhodes of the Wurlitzer is being used here, but it's a classic electric piano sound that has a sort of stylistic dialogue with the electronics and the acid-house sounding bass and synths. At times the album starts to develop the stench of jazz, which I don't usually like. I'm giving him the bemefit of the doubt and I will persist to see if it's a biting Parmesan I'm tasting, or just some mouldy cheese that should be thrown out.

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