Jakub Alexander curates the music selections here at the blog. He also runs his Moodgadet record label out of Brooklyn, NY and does A&R for Ghostly International Records.
Links:Moodgadget RecordsJakub's Tumblr
I hope you don’t mind if I go on a tangent here? I know the baseball season is over but enough is enough on these redesigns that look like the Mountain Dew logo. Who are the graphic designers that are doing these? The new logo looks like its going 80 miles per hour. The old classic Toronto logo had such strong pieces holding it together especially the color scheme, separated shapes and the leaf. The new one strips away the only Canadian element about it the maple leaf and even the color red, what on earth was the designer thinking?
Today marks a day of variety, we put up a cover of an old Chemical Brothers track reworked by Japan’s Shinichi Osawa. One of my favorite label’s Delsin delivers a deep and soft house cut from the mysterious Newworldaquarium. Caribou goes in a whole new direction with a Kelley Polar track that hints at he has been listening to a lot of electronic music and not just The Beach Boys. The Mountains seal the deal at the end with a gentle sleeper filled with layer upon layer of guitar.
Also, at the end there’s the original “Star Guitar” video by Michel Gondry just so you can pick if you like the cover more than the original, personally I don’t but its a wonderful effort by Mr. Osawa and featuring Au Revoir Simone never hurts. Chime in on the picks today since they’re all over the place and i’d love to hear if there’s something you like more than the other.
Shinichi Osawa – Star Guitar (feat. Au Revoir Simone)
Newworldaquarium – Tresspassers
Kelley Polar – We Live In An Expanding Universe – Caribou Remix
Mountains – Blown Glass Typewriter
Chemical Brothers – Star Guitar – Video by Michel Gondry
Before I start to gush about The Sight Below I think Alan Kellman from Allmusic Guide nailed the description perfectly: “The work of an anonymous Seattle-based producer with an evident affinity for the outer realms of shoegaze and somber ambient techno, Glider would have been an equally easy fit on Kranky, like label staple Loscil, or an idealized version of 4AD that has maintained the line running through the darker and spacier aspects of their early catalog. Alternately, this is just as likely to evoke the absorbing gray moods present throughout the Cure’s Faith and Seventeen Seconds as thaw-out techno like Yagya’s The Rhythm of Snow or Markus Guenter’s In Moll. Though heavily processed, caressingly foreboding guitars are a major component of the Sight Below sound, the root is Wolfgang Voigt’s Gas releases — whether or not a muffled thump is present, rhythm is paramount. Lesser producers would ride out these tracks for eight or nine minutes, rather than the six-minute average here; this producer keeps things tight and ever-developing, never straying into formlessness.”
Ahh the uphill battle that is releasing electronic music and trying to explain to uninformed fans and even friends that its not all the same 4/4 club music.
It is difficult to attract new fans to the hidden gems of the genre, there is so much good music that comes out weekly that gets buried under mediocre mainstream releases; the gelled up DJs, and the gimmicks that don’t age well. With “No New Enemies Vol. 1” we’ve assembled some up and comers that have strong melodic crossover tracks from the past, present, and future releases on Moodgadget. We think this is our finest attempt to date to show the diversity in this genre’s sound.
Slow disco edit experts Worst Friends kick the compilation off with a psychedelic rock/disco jam that begs the question “What if Pink Floyd made a dance track?” Charles Trees drops in with a dusty, heavy sample-laced track that is both soulful and upbeat; conjuring up the good times.
I know i’ve filled this blog with Benoit Pioulard but here he offers a serenade over a snowy Direwire’s song from the past, a real enjoyable headphone listening piece.
Tstewart’s, “What’s This Color” is new folk at its finest; with bouncy circular guitars, and samples warm enough to take the place of your winter coat in the coming months.
Also, not to be overlooked but Alex/HeadUp did the cover for the compilation and Scott was kind enough to let me take up a whole post to share these exclusive songs on the blog with you guys, I hope you enjoy.
Well composed ambient music with dynamics always brings a smile to my face no matter how sad people think the song might be. I want to start from bottom to top on this post since this Pub song “Lunch” is the most listened to song on my iTunes with just over 100 plays and clocking in at under 17 minutes long. I don’t know much about Pub, i’ve emailed him a couple times telling him I was a big fan years ago but I think he just keeps to himself I guess which is fine. I’ve honestly never heard anything else like this song, he makes this sound that fluctuates thru the song that feels like your standing in a clear huge air tunnel with the sun just beating down on you thru the glass and you stand there taking on a clean 30 MPH wind with your eyes closed. If you want more by him I’ve posted another alias of his months ago where he went under the name Lucky & Easy.
I went to the label Mush to check to see if Bibio was releasing anything anytime soon and behold there it was, a new LP. They had one song to sample and it couldn’t be more beautiful, a bit short but i’ll take whatever I can get my hands on. Very similar to his sound on his last 2 albums but thats what I want from him; lo-fi folk songs that bring me back to daydreaming about Polish mountain sides, collecting rocks, and thinking about how crayons we’re made.
My friend Danny turned me onto The Innocence Mission when I was getting my first listen in on Sufjan Steven’s Come on Feel the Illinoise! album. The song “John Wayne Gacy Jr.” came on and he ran upstairs and yelled “what’s this rip off artists name?” He thought the songs sounded the same, I still to this day don’t hear it. I guess he was just very protective of The Innocence Mission.
All this time I thought I already posted this Ekkehard Ehlers song but haven’t instead I was actually going to post Yo La Tengo – Autumn Sweater but i’ve already done that, damn. This song just completely satisfies my ambient sweet tooth by offering up some of the richest layers of drone you’ll ever hear. Each time I listen to this song I find a new section to magnify and listen to over and over.
As Autumn is rolling thru I have to throw my ring in with the first winter themed song by French musician Domotic, the beginning really captures that frigid winter night snowshoeing by yourself and wondering why on earth anyone would do this for fun.
This 13 min. journey by DFA’s most unrated duo is a pure analong synth gem, just let it ride out. When IDM producers slowed down some of the best composers of melody started quiting o9 and Marumari we’re 2 of my favorites, this track was only available if you bought the Marumari remix CD then you had to find the files that we’re on the CD, it came with some real treats like remixes from Casino Versus Japan, Atomly, Kettel, Greg Davis, Lusine, etc. Superpitcher always comes with such fullness, his style of taking techno and stretching and pulling on it to the point its almost made for everyone and the use of bird sounds is unbelievable in this track “You Don’t Need A Weatherman”. I don’t know much about Shogun Kunitoki I just know that this song has been on my computer for a long time and I keep coming back to it, i’ve heard more by them and some of their labelmates and everything was pretty flawless, enjoy the weekend.
Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom – Black Spring
Marumari – Untitled (o9 remix)
Carsten Jost – You Don’t Need A Weatherman (Superpitcher Remix)
Morgan Geist is half of Metro Area and just put out a proper LP and got an amazing remix from Carl Craig which I wanted to post but I had to post this single “Detroit” with Junior Boys lead man Jeremy Greenspan because it makes me want to put on the old Junior Boys albums on. I’m not sure if anyone has seen the Gears Of War 2 commercial but the licensed track by DeVotchka is really good kinda reminds me of Beirut a little. There might be a new Panda Bear (Animal Collective band member) album in the works, here’s a new track that I found looking for Cousin Cole which i’ll post later in the week. Has anyone heard of Mount Sims? its electro to say the least but damn good, listen for yourself.
Morgan Geist – Detroit (feat. Jeremy Greenspan of Junior Boys)
Alvin Lustig contributions to the design of books and book jackets, magazines, interiors, and textiles as well as his teachings would have made him a credible candidate for the AIGA Lifetime Achievement award when he was alive. By the time he died at the age of forty in 1955, he had already introduced principles of Modern art to graphic design that have had a long-term influence on contemporary practice. He was in the vanguard of a relatively small group who fervently, indeed religiously, believed in the curative power of good design when applied to all aspects of American life. He was a generalist, and yet in the specific media in which he excelled he established standards that are viable today. If one were to reconstruct, based on photographs, Lustig’s 1949 exhibition at The Composing Room Gallery in New York, the exhibits on view and the installation would be remarkably fresh, particularly in terms of the current trends in art-based imagery.
Update: I really can’t find larger images of this work so I put 2 in each image which doesn’t give them justice, please visit here.