2020 was a tough year for almost everyone and definitely a year to forget for our scene. Events and gigs canceled, venues closed, artists lacking a way to earn a decent living and club culture facing a threat like never before.
In the midst of these events were several people / organizations who tried to ease the pain, offering out some comfort by releasing music to people for free or by pay as you want download. This was always done, but this year I noticed that more and more artists are doing this.
Here is a selection of albums and compilations I came across this year and that I think is worth mentioning again.
Continue reading “2020 Giveaways”
Strange anomalies are scattered throughout the world. Things that could not possibly belong to the time period or place in which they were found. These so called out of place artifacts baffle historians & archaeologists up until today and have inspired producers Vril & Rødhåd to write a collaborative concept album. As a result the two producers got together in the studio with the idea to subvert the expectations of their previous work. They experimented over two sessions in 2018 and 2019, resulting in a record showcasing a different palette of sounds and tempo. The album is suited for deep listening and exploring aforementioned concepts or introspection in general. A mystic tone is set from the start, and grips the listener throughout the whole run time. Each track encapsulates this notion in its own unique form, blending sonic ambience and complex beats that reaches spectral heights. Both producer’s styles shine individually, but the collaboration achieves something greater than the sum of its parts.
RØDHÅD has continuously pushed the boundaries of modern techno to new hypnotic and theatrical heights on his Dystopian party-turned-label imprint, where he released his debut Anxious back in 2017. This time, RØDHÅD tunes into a place of reflection and reformation on his most avant-garde project to date: WSNWG – BACK TO ZERO. Intended to provide a space for solo releases, the imprint comes at a crucial turning point, as society circles in on itself during the pandemic. RØDHÅD christens the label with MOOD, his first ambient experimentalist release, comprised of his own solo archival material mostly from 2017/2018, working on a plane of spontaneity, devoid of set structures. The result is a life-giving, intimate and solipsistic work. Awash with field recordings, droning loops and subtle granulations, the sparse soundscapes on the 18- track album are deeply profound and satisfying. Crafting emotive textures through detailed layering of ethereal pads and simple synth melodies on ‘When They Returned After Midnight’ reflects the producer’s meditative sensibilities, whilst more beat-driven tracks such as ‘He Didn’t Seem The Kind of Guy Who Would Just Talk To A Stranger’ and ‘Pigeons Dancing On The Roof’ employ trip-hop beats atop washed synths and textural loops for a more downtempo affair. The album often has the dynamics of a sci-fi film score; the slow-building distortion on ‘A Huge Plume of Ash Rose From a Volcano’ carries a profound weight and substance, whilst the eerie ‘Like Sleepwalkers Ghosting Through A Dream’ breathes as if it had a life of its own.