VA – Virtual Dreams: Ambient Explorations In The House & Techno Age, 1993-1997 [MFM050]

VARIOUS - Virtual Dreams: Ambient Explorations In The House & Techno Age 1993-1997

Music From Memory is turning 50 with a special release: Virtual Dreams: Ambient Explorations In The House & Techno Age, 1993-1997. ‘Virtual Dreams’ delves into music produced during the 1990’s that redefined the boundaries of ‘Ambient’. This was music that explored the possibilities of Ambient music within a new setting, created often by House & Techno music producers for a world beyond dance floors but made very much with the pre and post-clubbing listener in mind. When House and Techno exploded out of America in the mid 1980s a whole generation was redefined not only musically but also culturally and chemically speaking. Peaking, quite literally, with a second ‘Summer of Love’ in 1988, millions of young people across the world would experience the life-changing ups of a brave new world but with it of course came the downs; enter the concept of a ‘Chill-out’ room. Whilst early Chill-out rooms lacked a specific sound and were often soundtracked by music such as reggae and soul, slowly young Techno and House producers themselves would become increasingly interested in developing a futuristic ‘Ambient’ soundtrack to a world beyond the thud of the main room. From Ambient and early Chill-out classics, to lesser known one-off projects, as well as Ambient deviations by some of House and Techno’s leading producers, Volume One of Virtual Dreams features tracks by Bedouin Ascent, David Moufang, LA Synthesis, LFO, Marc Hollander, Mark Pritchard & Kirsty Hawkshaw, Richard H. Kirk and more.

vinyl / CD

VA – Virtual Dreams: Ambient Explorations In The House & Techno Age, 1993-1997 [MFM050]

VA – Music For Dance & Theatre Vol. 2 [MFM049]

KUPKA, Craig/RAY LYNCH/SCAN LINES - Music For Dance & Theatre: Volume Two

‘Music For Theatre And Dance – Volume Two’ is the second in a small series of EPs that will focus on music which was initially created for or inspired by dance and performance. Created as a dialogue with the avant-garde and highly experimental work in dance, theatre and art evolving at the time, the music was in turn at times greatly innovative. That it was created for a dance or performance though means that such music was also often highly rhythmic and a number of pieces from this time stand out and seem greatly deserving of a new context. Whether it’s more ambient or atmospheric works or whether it’s in the more rhythmic or percussive pieces, Music From Memory brings together another selection of tracks that aims to highlight this highly innovative direction in music.

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VA – Music For Dance & Theatre Vol. 2 [MFM049]

Ruins – Marea / Tide: Sound & Image Research Volume One [MFM043]

Music From Memory’s latest release is a reissue of the lost Art record ‘Marea / Tide’ from Italian Wave duo Alessandro Pizzin and Piergiuseppe Ciranna also know as ‘Ruins’. Made to accompany and as a response to the works of painter ‘Luigi Viola’ the record was released limited to a run of 600 with original artworks by the painter included in the first 200 copies. A number of special showcases were performed at various galleries by the duo alongside Viola’s work, with records being available solely at those events. Due to poor management and disagreements with the label who produced the record, 300 copies were held for many years in storage and then in fact later even destroyed, the record disappearing almost without a trace. Finally now available again and with a bonus 7” including four beautiful unreleased tracks, the release is printed in colors true to the original work of Luigi Viola with insert.

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Ruins – Marea / Tide: Sound & Image Research Volume One [MFM043]

Curt Cress – Dschung Tek EP [MFM038]

This EP from Dutch archival imprint Music From Memory is every bit as glassy-eyed and loved-up as the rest of their left-of-centre, Balearic-minded catalogue. German drummer and composer Curt Cress first released “Dschung Tess” in 1992, layering his own dense tribal drums across a tropical, ambient house and dream house influenced backing track on the brilliant “Long Version”, before stripping it back to a loved-up, Ibiza-friendly house cut on the “No Live Drums” version. Both mixes can be found on this reissue, alongside a trio of similarly percussive, tropical-minded cuts from the artist’s 1983 LP, “Avanti”. All three are ace and almost as good as the more floor-focused title track.

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Curt Cress – Dschung Tek EP [MFM038]

Jonny Nash – Make A Wilderness [MFM037]

‘This album was created over the course of 2017-2018 and is heavily influenced by descriptions of landscape and environment in the work of authors Shusaku Endo, J.G. Ballard and Cormac McCarthy. Fragments from a land that is a largely silent place. An ancient place. A non-place. A wilderness.’

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Jonny Nash – Make A Wilderness [MFM037]

Michal Turtle – Return To Jeka [MFM029]

Msic From Memory took a deep dive into the archives of obscure British multi-instrumentalist Mike Turtle, resurfacing with a fine double-album of largely previously unheard cuts. Two years on they’ve taken another stroll through Turtle’s well-stocked vault, resulting in another essential collection of quirky cuts. Check, for example, the psychedelic patchwork “Reincarnation”, where backwards drums do battle with exotic Indian samples, or the delay-laden, lo-fi synth-pop pulse of “Uiko’s Return to Jeka”, which boasts strange spoken word vocals from Turtle and South African style juju guitar solos. You’ll find these kinds of imaginative experiments throughout; tracks that really shouldn’t work, but instead entertain, excite and inspire in equal measure.

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Michal Turtle – Return To Jeka [MFM029]

Terekke – Improvisational Loops [MFM028]

Terekke drifts gracefully onto Music From Memory with a long player of looping ambient pad pressure. The recording of ‘Improvisational Loops’ began in 2012 during yoga classes at Body Actualized Center in NYC. In the spirit of past ‘New Age’ or Minimal music, it aims to open up a space within the room giving the listener a chance to explore inward or outward. It was recorded using a digital synthesizer, reverb, and looper.

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Terekke – Improvisational Loops [MFM028]

Vincent – Fast Forward [MFM024]

Music From Memory return, this time with four tracks drawn from Virgil ‘Vincent’ Work Jnr’s little-known cassette only debut from 1987. This album reflects a more stripped back and raw musical approach from the St. Louis musician. The ‘Fast Forward’ sessions grew out of a series of late night jams with Vincent’s brother Scott who was then living in Kansas. With nothing planned in advance and no written music involved in the final recording sessions, the songs that would form ‘Fast Forward’ very much evolved out of improvisation. As Virgil himself explains, the title of the album in fact came about because it felt “as if I had fast forwarded to a different sound”. Although the album received a good response from local radio DJs and music magazines, the album sadly never gained enough momentum or demand for a further run of copies. Fast forward to 2017, exactly thirty years are their production, and Music From Memory are delighted to be able to finally make Vincent’s music commercially available again.

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Vincent – Fast Forward [MFM024]

Denis Mpunga & Paul K – Criola Remixed [MFM023]

Having thrilled dusty-fingered crate diggers with a reissue of Denis Mpunga and Paul K’s impossible-to-find mid-’80s cassette album Criola – an unusual but rather fine combination of post-punk and traditional Congolese music – Music from Memory has decided to give some of the tracks the remix treatment. As you’d expect, there’s many more hits than misses. Dutch rising star Dazion delivers a wonderfully cosmic revision of “Intermezzo B” full of fluttering new age synth lines and drum machine polyrhythms, while Tolouse Low Trax turns “Veronika” into a woozy and dreamy chunk of dub-flecked, loved-up downtempo bliss. Late night dancefloor thrills are provided by Interstellar Funk’s intergalactic tribal techno take on “Intermezzo 2” and Prins Emmanuel’s tactile take on “KWEI!”, which sits somewhere between dub disco, boogie and proto-house.

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Denis Mpunga & Paul K – Criola Remixed [MFM023]

Gaussian Curve – The Distance [MFM018]

New LP from Gigi Masin, Jonny Nash and Young Marco. Although their methodology remained the same, the inspirations were different. Whereas Clouds was intimate by design, The Distance reflects more on spaciousness, distance and time. It is instantly recognizable as a Gaussian Curve record, but feels different in scope and tone.

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Gaussian Curve – The Distance [MFM018]

Denis Mpunga & Paul K – Criola [MFM019]

The last Music From Memory is a mini LP of works by Denis Mpunga and Paul K. Combining elements of traditional African music with experimental electronics, the Belgian/Congolese duo released only a handful of tracks, scattered across a few rare LP and cassette compilations that were put out in the mid eighties by obscure european labels . This release also includes a few previously unreleased songs that were found on the original master tapes.

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Denis Mpunga & Paul K – Criola [MFM019]

Napoleon Cherry – Walk Alone [MFM007]

Napoleon Cherry is perhaps not the unknown name that Music From Memory excels at celebrating but the Philadelphian musician’s releases are certainly suitably hard to find. This career retrospective offers a mix of impossible-to-find tracks, many from his deliciously rare 1990 debut full-length, and previously unheard cuts. It portrays Cherry as a master of warm, evocative, Balearic soul and lo-fi synthesizer funk, whose analogue-rich releases were always out-of-step with the musical trends developing around him. Crucially, all 10 of these tracks are superb, making Walk Alone yet another essential Music From Memory purchase.

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Napoleon Cherry – Walk Alone [MFM007]

Leon Lowman – Liquid Diamonds [MFM001]

Music From Memory sets sail with a compilation of lo-­‐fi beach funk and lazy synth jams from the Rhode Island keyboardist and ocean loving Leon Lowman. Something of a homage to his love of the local seashore and the women he was trying to woo there, the albums also express Leon’s pure love of the synthesizer sound and reflect his unique melodic wanderings. Along with previously unreleased material from the time, “Liquid Diamonds‘ highlights Leon Lowman’s unique blend of low fi synth funk and surf ambience.

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Leon Lowman – Liquid Diamonds [MFM001]