Skip to main content
Loading...

Featured Post

Amazon to start its biggest Black Friday sale yet on 16 November

Amazon's Black Friday Sale 2018 is to be its biggest yet, running from 16 November to the 25th. Here's what you need to know.
Amazon is all set for its biggest Black Friday sale yet with ten days of discounts on electronics, toys, games, fashion, beauty and home products. Black Friday deals begin 16 November and end on the 25th.

Haron - Wandelaar Music Album Reviews

The debut release on Dutch label Queeste is everything you could wish for in an ambient soundtrack to humid midsummer nights, its melodies as graceful as a swallow’s arc.

Small record labels don’t enjoy quite the tastemaking status they once did, but the debut release on the Dutch label Queeste suggests that it will be an imprint worth watching. Queeste is a new venture from one of the people behind the Hague’s Wichelroede, a short-lived mail-order outlet and cassette label that, for a couple years in the middle of this decade, carved out a nice little niche for experimental club sounds. It was an obscure operation, for sure, but their C90s brought together acts like Beatrice Dillon and Ben UFO, or Cloudface and Powder—the kind of names likely to perk up the ears of a certain type of curious househead with a taste for obscurity—on split mixtapes that traced the outer limits of DJ culture.

Haron, too, is Dutch. Not long ago, he was banging out lush yet lo-fi techno, soaked in emotion and tape saturation, in the company of peers like Legowelt and Aurora Halal. But his debut album forsakes beats altogether. For long stretches, Wandelaar is even bereft of electronics. Much of it could be mistaken for a private-press recording from the 1980s; it is both minimalist and sentimental, a pensive descendant of Ryuichi Sakamoto, Harold Budd, the Catalan composer Frederic Mompou. Right now, in midsummer, it sounds like everything you could wish for in a spacious soundtrack to humid nights, its melodies as graceful as a swallow’s arc against a sky the color of a nectarine. It’s safe to say that, come winter, the album’s environmental properties—its ability to both blend in with its surroundings and heighten the senses—will be just as evocative.

It’s not news that ambient, new age, and Balearic styles have recently been solidifying their footholds in leftfield electronic music, despite the fact that each is decades old; it’s no secret, either, that they are all easily caricatured and frequently faked. But Wandelaar (the title translates as “Walker” or “Hiker”) is a reminder that vision and musicianship will always carry the day. It is a quiet, understated album in which compositional rigor and improvisational expressiveness neatly dovetail.

Wandelaar isn’t entirely without electronics. After “Lotuseter,” the searching 10-minute piece that opens the album, in which short, agile runs are bathed in echo and faint synthesizer—a meditative sojourn, a series of questions without answers—the A-side takes a succession of gentle left turns. First there are fluttering string pads, then a tentative electronic glissando that sounds a bit like a pitched-down THX “deep note”—both markers of a distinctly cinematic style, one quite different from the airy naturalism of the opener. As “Maangerij” seamlessly gives way to “Caverne” (though titled separately, they are essentially two parts of the same composition), the sounds freeze and fracture, echoing some of Oneohtrix Point Never’s disorienting strategies. Finally, the short “Selenieten” closes out the record’s first side with dull thuds and digital trickery: an atonal palate cleanser before Haron returns to the unabashedly sentimental style with which he begins the album.

The B-side’s three long tracks all build on the sound and techniques established with “Lotuseter.” An air of mystery prevails. The ghosts of Debussy and Satie hang like a pastel mist over languid, lyrical melodies, as unexpected modal runs keep the music from tipping too far toward the maudlin. Judicious electronic processing lends a subtly surreal touch. Shifting slapback delay suggests a piano recital staged in an auditorium whose architecture keeps morphing; reverb comes and goes in bursts, tugging against the music’s meandering flow and keeping the listener slightly off balance, like the uneven surge of a chemical flashback.

“Music for Elbows” ends the record with a coda of sorts. This time the halting runs of “Lotuseter” play out more like a forearm mashing keys, in quick, unfussy strokes. If you’ve ever seen the experimental director Chris Marker’s moving 1990 short “Cat Listening to Music”—a three-minute video of his cat sleeping on a keyboard, set to Mompou’s “Pajaro Triste”—you will recognize the mood here: calm, unpretentious, peaceful. Restrained, soothing, but never bland, Wandelaar never tries to be anything it’s not. It’s a canny stylistic shift for Haron, and a wonderful first record from Queeste: a minor miracle disguised as a soundtrack to a catnap.

View the original article here

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

LG G5 Review In-Depth

Can LG take on the Galaxy S7 with a metal design, dual-cameras and an accessory slot? Here's our first LG G5 review, focusing on LG G5 design and build, LG G5 specs, LG G5 cameras and LG G5 software and apps.
Alongside the Galaxy S7, the LG G5 is one of the biggest phones (not literally) to launch in 2016 – and we're not just talking in the Android world. It's one of the heavyweights and LG will be looking to set the market alight with the G5's alternative and innovative modular design.

2019 BMW i8 Review

The 2019 BMW i8 is a head-turner for its looks, which hides its plug-in powertrain. That’s good or bad, depending on your priorities.Even among six-figure cars with two doors, the 2019 BMW i8 steals stares. That could be because of the dramatic wing doors and futuristic shape, its laser headlights at night, or the 2019 i8’s silent propulsion for up to 18 miles.
Or it may steal attention because, even after more than four years on sale, it’s a very rare sight.

Apple iPhone XR Review

If you aren't sure you are ready to leave the Home button behind and embrace Face ID, think again. We'll tell you why the iPhone XR is worth the sacrifice - especially because it's just as good (if not better than) the iPhone XS. Find out more in out full review.
Should I Buy The Apple iPhone XR?
The iPhone XR brings Face ID to the masses. We’re sure people will continue to rebel against the lack of Home button, but eventually we expect them to come round and embrace the larger screen, Portrait mode (front and back), animoji and memoji.We have no doubt that this will be a popular iPhone and it deserves to be. The only question is why would anyone buy an iPhone XS when the iPhone XR is just as powerful and has a bigger screen.

Oppo RX17 Pro Review: Hands-on

We had time with Oppo’s new RX17 Pro. It may be blue and purple but how different is it to the similar OnePlus 6T and is it worth your time?
Should I Buy The Oppo RX17 Pro?
Oppo has made a solid mid-range phone in the RX17 Pro. Build quality is premium, fast charging is industry-best fast and the display is of high quality.But the price is high at 599€ considering the OnePlus 6T with a better processor starts at £499/€529. And while functioning as it’s supposed to, ColorOS is still unrefined for the western market with far too many changes to Android to recommend over competitors.

Google Pixel Review

Not everyone wants a phone with a big screen, but most small-screen phones compromise on performance and cameras. Not so with Google’s latest flagship Android phone: Here’s our Google Pixel review.
Joining the ranks of the Pixel C and Chromebook Pixel are Google’s new Pixel phones. We’re reviewing the smaller 5in Pixel here, but you can read our separate Pixel XL review if you’re after a bigger phone.

Like Fan Page