Skip to main content

Featured Post

Air Fryer BBQ Chicken Wings

Air Fryer BBQ Chicken Wings are perfect for the next game night. The Air Fryer really makes the chicken wings nice and crispy with very little oil. Just slather them in BBQ sauce and you’ve got yourself a game-winning combo.



Carl Stone - Electronic Music From the Eighties and Nineties Music Album Reviews

A second volume of the Los Angeles composer’s archival work highlights pieces that attempted to bridge academic research with emotional accessibility, with mixed results.

In the cloistered realm of academia, experimental composers often occupy a unique position. Careers can be focused on pushing musical systems, emerging technologies, or conceptual frameworks to the point where all but the most invested audience members are left behind. In 1937, John Cage expressed the daunting situation succinctly: “The composer… will be faced not only with the entire field of sound but also with the entire field of time... No rhythm will be beyond the composer’s reach.” But this perspective can lead to a deep suspicion of anything with crossover appeal, simple melodicism, or a steady beat. After all, these tools are known quantities. And if your goal is to push into the unknown (the theory goes), you want as little of that baggage holding you back as possible.

Carl Stone did not have this problem. Though he came up through academia, his circuitous route to composition was born in the early-1970s via a student job archiving Cal Arts’ LP library to cassette. By chance, he found he could listen to multiple albums at the same time, and soon discovered what today every novice with a pair of turntables (or open YouTube windows) knows: layering records is fun. Inspired by Steve Reich’s mid-1960s tape pieces and the phenomenological compositions of Alvin Lucier, he began editing, looping, and juxtaposing other people’s works. In a word, he was sampling, still a radical idea at the time. The groundbreaking approach helped him to skirt the typical issues of mandated esotericism and evolve his practice in sync with the development of samplers and home computers. Two years ago, the label Unseen Worlds compiled his formative years on Electronic Music From the Seventies and Eighties. The follow-up, Electronic Music From the Eighties and Nineties, is a retrospective of four mature pieces. Though noteworthy on technical and historical levels, Electronic Music flags emotionally, vacillating between maudlin optimism and a half-baked minimalism.

The compilation mostly acts as a best-of, revisiting three previously released works alongside the never-before-heard “Mae Yao.” All four pieces strike a balance between unabashed accessibility and complex methods. “Banteay Srey” slices and bends unknown source material into a breathy whalesong, wrapping it around a simple bass harmony. The music’s slow-motion dawn echoes the pregnant-with-meaning sampledelia of Boards of Canada, but oversells itself. Cinematic to a fault, it’s the kind of music that might nudge the listener towards a quiet epiphany on headphones but suddenly seems a little embarrassing when played for friends. At over 14 minutes, it’s also at least five too long. On the other side, “Sonali” highlights crisp, synthetic marimbas. It’s clearly influenced by the minimalist composers that preceded him by a decade, but the effect ends up much closer to Hollywood’s cheap rip-offs—“Sonali” begs to soundtrack a montage of brisk accomplishment. It’s “Music for Brainstorms.”

This is the album’s central flaw. Stone is clearly reaching for an emotional connection, but he remains oddly disengaged from the complexities of real life. Instead, the album smothers you in the kind of thin characterization of commercial middlebrow dramas. The hummingbird flutters of “Woo Lae Oak” or the jaunty ripples of “Sonali” gesture toward meaning without allowing even a hint of darkness or ambiguity. In Stone’s hands, all sounds get along. Only “Mae Yao” breaks form, processing a gamelan orchestra into a glitching seizure with more brow-furrowing rigor. Not quite a half hour in length, it feels like the A-minus work of a graduate student. Stone demonstrates technical fluency and works out his process with a not-unimpressive economy of means, but “Mae Yao” never actually blossoms into affecting music.

Absorbing those jarring pops and jumps, the gentle ebbing of sound around the stereo field, and the glassy, digital artifice reimagined as a source of wide-open pathos, it is impossible not to think of another artist active in the 1990s: Oval. The work of Markus Popp and co. deployed many of the same techniques as Stone—the group was famous for using skipping CDs, deep sampling, and long runtimes to both soothing and oozing effect. One wonders how Oval’s work can be so entrancing while Stone’s, remarkably similar on the surface, just spins its wheels. Perhaps it’s a matter of priorities. Oval explored the computer like a lost continent, mapping its terrain with barely a thought given to the human experience back home. Stone, on the other hand, seems all too concerned with making sure his listeners feel safe and attended to, and the work suffers as a result. In the academy, an appealing artist statement and a complex process can go a long way, but for music to make a real impact you need to take a leap beyond the page. Electronic Music jumps up and down with impressive energy, pointing excitedly towards the future, but in the end stays put in a quickly receding past.

View the original article here


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

Moto Z4 Play Release Date, Price & Spec Rumours

We investigate rumours surrounding the Moto Z4 Play, which could be announced in June 2019 with an in-display fingerprint sensor.
Announced in June 2018, the Moto Z3 Play was never joined in the UK by the standard Moto Z3. It's possible that for the Z4 series we will again see only the Play model go on sale here, with the Moto Z4 Play expected to be announced in the UK in mid-2019.

OnePlus 5G Phone Release Date, Price & Spec Rumours

OnePlus is working with Qualcomm and EE to ensure it has one of the first 5G phones available in Europe, but when will the 5G OnePlus launch?
OnePlus is going to be one of the first smartphone makers to release a 5G phone in 2019, said co-founder Carl Pei at December's Qualcomm summit. It has been working on 5G since 2016 and has lined up partnerships with both EE - the network operator that pioneered 4G in the UK - and chip maker Qualcomm to ensure it is ready to go with the technology as soon as possible.

Oppo RX17 Pro Review

Though similar to the OnePlus 6T the Oppo RX17 Pro is very different thanks to the software. Here’s our full review
Should I Buy The Oppo RX17 Pro?
The RX17 Pro is a great looking phone with good performance and a lush display. But with a Snapdragon 710 rather than the better 845 it’s just impossible not to compare it to the OnePlus 6T which looks the same, has better software for the western market and, importantly, costs less.
If you like the look of Oppo’s interface though then there’s a lot to like. The two colour options are premium as is the build quality and the cameras are above average if not great.

Best kids' Tablets 2019

If you want to buy your child a tablet, here are the best and the most affordable out there to ensure they get the most suitable tablet for their age By Simon Jary | 02 Jan 2019

2019 Lincoln Continental Review

If you’re tired of the same old luxury options, the 2019 Lincoln Continental provides a refreshingly retro-cool alternative.
The 2019 Lincoln Continental is a big, luxurious American sedan at a time when Americans are hardly buying big, luxurious American sedans anymore. Regardless, it’s a throwback ride with plenty of character, great value, lots of power, and a classic nameplate. We give it 7.5 out of 10 overall.
Among European and Japanese rivals with established models – S-Class, 7 Series, LS – this Lincoln stands out for several reasons, chief among them its nameplate. With the Continental, Lincoln has one of the most storied American car names.

Like Fan Page