Pessimist: Austerity EP (Osiris Music)

God! This is about as grey and depressing as electronic music gets.

The continuum of dour people out there with bleak tastes (myself included at times…) shuffles on. Which is same as it ever was I suppose. It has the hopeless trudge of a prison exercise yard (and funnily enough Van Gogh’s painting immediately came to mind. Don’t ask me why? I’m a visual person with a ‘Fine Arts’ background ahem ahem, so I can’t help myself…nevertheless, the visual analogy seems perfect).

prison-courtyard

Round and round they go, heads down, lost in reverie, cut off from the real world.

Fair play though, the JK Flesh remix tries for a break out and nearly makes it over the wall too, managing to lash out with a vintage Reese – before he’s dragged back to solitary.

Ancestral Voices: Navagraha (Horo)

A ‘concept album’ based on Hans Cousto’s “Cosmic Octave”.

Hmmm all very po-faced. Not sure we need to know that? or if it’s just irrelevant intellectual ingenuity. Plenty of different shades of grey over the the 1h34min play length for sure, some dark some light, but sorry, it doesn’t “create a profound effect on the consciousness of the listener.” Not on this one anyway. No more than any other technically accomplished ambient outing. (Compare and contrast for example, to the equally cosmic newly released 1999 recording Kshatrya (The Eye of the Bird)’ from the avant-garde composer Igor Wakhevitch on Transversales Disques).

We’re all too tainted as cultural consumers in the cinematic sweep of common or vulgar film scores, telling us just what to feel at the cues; the failed attempts at sublimity (pathos). Needless to say, it gets way more interesting (as always) when harnessed to a pulse, a beat and ultra low tectonic sub bass.

Vulkanski: Science Gardens (Bite)

Dense, murked out slices of almost old schoolish ’94 hardnoize 4/4; tidal waves of rumbling noise and booming impact but with a kind of suppressed headroom/digital grot? (as opposed to any gleeful up front, run-it-red mixing desk overdrive of analogue years gone by). Check the 2 minute breakdown and hissing-foam-on-the-rocks swell build in ’Science Gardens’ at around 4:00 mark.