monthly feature: chogori

band photo

the august participant in our monthly feature is the german band chogori.

in october, the experimental duo will release the new album lake on less records, a label co-founded by composer tom blankenberg.

the first thing that strikes you while listening to lake, is the adventurous aspect of music the duo has embarked into. lake is hard to categorize (which is a good thing) due to it’s playfulness and openness. all tracks on the album are varied, each with its own story to tell. the fact that it’s a challenge to give any similar-sounding references makes this album a lot more interesting, and also more enjoyable. for example, there are some contemporary jazzy vibes in repetition, which make me think of manchester-based gogo penguin. i really need to mention that the rhythm section of repetition is absolutely incredible, both in terms of rhythms, but also in the way chogori allows the drums to breathe – the acoustic space is simply beautiful.

another favourite on the album is definitely ifny, atmospheric sounds with a continuous bassline that very much builds around the concept of the album/artwork. tracks like ifny adds to the already mentioned space, beautifully captured.

lake is in my opinion an album to look forward to – the perfect mix of electronica, classical and jazzy sounds. it is also a worthy contributor to the entire idea behind the less records collective, and i look forward to hear more both from the band and the label.

tracklist:

01 sinus flux
02 ifny
03 new temper
04 bowing elements
05 repetition
06 four
07 cottage
08 vico
09 thelonious
10 grand prix

lake can be pre-ordered through itunes.

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monthly feature: philip g anderson

Philip G Anderson_Headshot

the third participant in our monthly feature is the american composer philip g anderson.

besides releasing extraordinary beautiful music – with a strong focus on cinematic soundscapes and strings – philip also took his compositions to both tv and film, working with a wide variety of networks such as cnn, fox and cbs. he also composed the ost’s for several short films (le passage du temps, fleur, wanderful etc).

his first full-length album is named wilderness and was released on march 1st.
in philip‘s own words, he is describing the birth of the album as follows;

this project started as a desire to escape the small, claustrophobic, and dark room where i spent much of my time writing and working. i wanted to create music that got me out of that room and also inspired other people to go out and explore the beautiful, natural world around us. i was inspired early on by imagery of the vast wilderness in the pacific northwest. i wondered what the dense forests, flowing rivers, and expansive mountain ranges would sound like musically. and so, i composed 10 pieces that blend together ambient, modern classical, and cinematic elements to reflect what I felt that would sound like, a soundtrack for exploring the wilderness.

listening to the album after reading his own thoughts about the album, it’s safe to say that philip g anderson conveyed exactly the message he set out to do. wilderness is embraced by weightlessness, beauty, meaning, admiration – all the things we experience when we explore nature in its purest form are present on this release.
the timid piano – lined by heavily reverberated cellos and violins by dave edwards and erin cassel – adds an extra dimension, even allowing the listener to be taken beyond nature.

Wilderness_Artwork

tracklist:

01 wilderness
02 along the forest floor
03 olympic
04 lakes
05 from river to ocean
06 moss
07 fog
08 overcast
09 evergreen
10 mountains

 


together with photographer grant boutiette, philip also shared a few of the photos taken in connection with the album artwork.

Fog17 GB

this photo was taken in skokomish washington. we were driving through a swamp area and saw the fog slowly fading away to reveal the tree covered hilltops. what stood out to me most about this location and moment was how quiet it was. there was no wind, no car sounds, no animal sounds, just silence. it was incredibly calm.

Lake3 GB

this photo was taken overlooking lake cushman near the entrance to olympic national park. we were driving through the mountains and came across this overlook with stunning views of the clouds rolling over the mountains. it’s hard to get a true sense of just how big the lake is and how far you could see from the photo. we spent a long time in that spot just observing and taking in the view.

wilderness can be purchased from philip g anderson’s bandcamp.

monthly feature: jan-dirk platek

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the second participant in our monthly feature is with 38 releases on bandcamp (!) undoubtedly one of the more productive composers out there; jan-dirk platek.

jan, born in 1976, is a multi-instrumentalist and besides releasing piano music with a neoclassical touch, he is also the creator of post-rock/electronic project we deserve this.

one of his latest albums, a feeling named hope is a beautifully executed reminder of how death always will be a part of life. talking about the atmosphere of the album and the concept, platek states that “there are no happy endings, so the album is melancholic but never depressed” – a perfect contemplation that accurately describes the mood of this clean, minimal yet highly powerful record.

Cover A Feeling Named Hope SC

tracklist:

01 the testament
02 awake
03 rose
04 a feeling named hope
05 lies
06 helicopter
07 stars
08 clouds
09 death on sunday
10 coffin
11 tears

a feeling named hope can be purchased from jan-dirk plateks’s bandcamp.
also be sure to look out for his coming album distance, out on friday.

 

monthly feature: tom blankenberg

tb_photo_by_andreas_henk

first up in our monthly feature of 2019 is tom blankenberg.

tom is a composer, producer and sound designer based in düsseldorf, germany.
on the 15th of february, he will release his debut album, atermus, on cd and vinyl as well as through digital services.

on atermus, the listener will find 13 exceptional, minimal, solo piano tracks, ranging from contemporary classical sounds to avant-garde elements with small touches of jazz.

blankenberg’s debut effort is without a doubt a fresh breeze in the new and popular genre we all like to address as neoclassical; especially because of the jazz atmosphere his piano playing style adds to the tracks. even for the more mellow tracks on the album, a playfulness can be heard in the way he approaches the piano, which makes the entire listening experience highly enjoyable. like a listener once said, “it’s like an impressionistic painting.”

tom_blankenberg_atermus_vinyl_frontcover

tracklist:

01 tori
02 juni
03 london fields
04 femto
05 august
06 benkhausen
07 märz
08 atermus / reprise
09 09h53
10 oktober
11 hirundo
12 november
13 nesuto

in connection with our feature, check tom blankenberg’s new video for the track “tori”.

atermus can be pre-ordered from tom blankenberg’s bandcamp.