Skip to main content

Featured Post

Doug Paisley - Starter Home Music Album Review

Gracefully navigating the intersection of folk-rock and country, the gentle-voiced songwriter turns detailed images of domestic tranquility and promise into reflections on disappointment.
For a decade, Canadian singer/songwriter Doug Paisley has turned quiet, specific moments into inquiries on life’s larger struggles. On his 2010 breakthrough, Constant Companion, Paisley used the inevitability of endings to explore understanding oneself, the only possible “constant companion.” For 2014’s Strong Feelings, he mulled death and its uneasy relationship with life, or how their juxtaposition ripples into every wave of existence. And now, on his fourth album, Starter Home, Paisley details the chasm that separates what poet Seamus Heaney described as “getting started” and “getting started again.” These songs examine how the person you are never truly aligns with the person you want to be, especially when you stumble upon a sticking point that’s hard to move past.



Meuko! Meuko! - 鬼島 Ghost Island EP Music Album Reviews

Taiwanese artist Pon blends traditional mythology and instruments with electronic beats and cacophonous samples on a release inspired by life in—and the urge to escape from—her home city of Taipei.

Life in a modern metropolis shapes the experimental music of Meuko! Meuko! The Taipei artist behind the project, Pon, cites “Taiwan’s irregular view/architectures and buildings, muggy, emissions-filled air, and hectic streetscapes” as influences on a sound constructed from an array of samples and synthesizer notes. The songs on her latest release, 鬼島 Ghost Island, frequently come off as claustrophobic, with noises tumbling over one another to form a cacophony reminiscent of daily city noise. But rather than just recreating the constricted experience of urban living, the album finds Pon incorporating traditional mythology and instruments to craft fantastical escapes—albeit with quotidian grime seeping in throughout.

This is just the latest aesthetic leap from an artist who’s fond of leaning into new styles. Pon first gained attention as a vocalist and synth player in indie-pop group the Shine & Shine & Shine & Shine (閃閃閃閃), an outfit whose melancholy jogs are a world away from the fractured beats she’s gone on to create. Although Meuko! Meuko! dates back to 2007, it really took off in 2015, when Pon arrived at a sound whose shadowy atmosphere undercut glitchy dance tracks loaded up with samples and toy noises and, at live shows, complemented by a whirlwind of images. Pon gravitated toward juke on last year’s About Time EP, approaching the genre with the same oddball flourishes as her frequent collaborator Foodman, but establishing a pervasive sense of unease that contrasted with the Japanese producer’s more joyful bounce.

On 鬼島 Ghost Island, Meuko! Meuko! shifts toward the overwhelming, evoking a constant flux that sounds closest to the work of Arca and Danse Noire founder Aïsha Devi. “都市念佛法會Metropolitan Sutra Gathering” opens the record with faint chanting, but samples and percussion jabs quickly drown out those vocals. Pon gradually consolidates this noise into one final burst, filled out by warped echoes of the original prayer. “狗戰 Dog War” uses barking to complement the drum machine rumbles that propel the song forward, resulting in the album’s most intimidating track. Pon has always constructed her compositions out of disjointed sounds, but now she’s adding even more of them to songs stuffed with ever-mutating details. The two remixes at the end of this collection heighten this maximalist sensibility, with producers GIL and Dutch E Germ retaining the restless feel of Meuko! Meuko!’s originals while introducing their own high-definition dollops to the tracks.

Pon’s approach to vocals has also changed. In the past, she often delivered short stories in speak-sing. Now, she treats her voice as another instrument to stir into the stews of noise she concocts. On closer “希卡公主 Princes Sika,” she nearly whispers, her voice lurking beneath chopped-up beats and periodically dashing out. It’s here that Pon best captures the tension simmering across 鬼島 Ghost Island, in a track that feels like hot breath on the back of your neck.

The album’s beats could populate any number of 2018’s dissected club tracks, but Pon incorporates additional touches that tie her songs to a specific place and culture. “Ghost Island” is slang used in Taiwan to describe the grim economic conditions facing the country’s young people (although Pon has said she used it as a creative springboard more than as a statement). “眾神廟 The Temple” loops Chinese horns to create a sweltering drone that reappears throughout the record, helping to unite the songs. There’s nothing particularly nostalgic about these instruments or the chanting, however. Modern constantly electronics grind up against these traditional sounds, a reminder that reality always finds a way to sneak into Pon’s escapist fantasies.

A short but focused release, 鬼島 Ghost Island showcases the broad potential of Meuko! Meuko! It’s also the latest export from a burgeoning community of musicians in East Asia—including Foodman, Sonia Calico of Taiwan, Korea’s Neon Bunny, and everyone in the orbit of China’s Do Hits label—who merge traditional sounds from their cultures with contemporary electronic music. Meuko! Meuko! brings new purpose to this juxtaposition, using the harsh sounds of modern life to give her music a distinctly 21st-century tension.

View the original article here


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

Synology Mesh Router MR2200ac Review

You probably know Synology for making NAS drives but the firm has also turned its hand to mesh networks. Here we review the MR2200ac.
Should I Buy The Synology Mesh Router MR2200ac?
Synology could do a little more to explain the many features of the MR2200ac for first-time users, but the strong performance of this mesh system, and the fine-control provided by its web browser interface make it a good option for business users or home users who have a little more experience of networking technology.

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.

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.

Dell XPS 13 (2019) vs Dell XPS 13 (2018)

Can Dell make its XPS 13 laptop any better? Well it's tried with a new 2019 model so we compare the two and explain what has and hasn't changed.
Should I Buy The Dell XPS 13 9370 (2018) Or Dell XPS 13 (2019)?
There’s a new XPS 13 in town but you’ll struggle to justify the upgrade from 2018’s model with namely a new webcam as a headline upgrade.
Sure, there are other upgrades to the the core specs but for most people, these will be fairly insignificant. The inclusion of a cheaper Core i3 model is particularly interesting.

Huawei P Smart 2019 Review

Huawei has updated its budget Android phone for 2019. It’s faster and better than before, but should you buy it? Read our review to find out.
Should I Buy The Huawei P Smart 2019?
The P Smart 2019 is a great upgrade from the 2018 model with a bigger screen and better performance. However, as with the original P Smart, Honor's version is better value.

Like Fan Page