Review: The music of Chel White is celebrated in Automaton, a collection of mostly unreleased recordings from 1985 to 1991, by this innovative animator, film maker and visual artist.
Having studied music theory in grade school, White taught himself drumming and played in a new wave band until, in 1981, together with Dan Gediman, they formed the minimal wave duo Process Blue (Alternative Funk, 1985 / Dark Entries, 2018). Here their experimentation went way beyond playing drums.
His interest in industrial music, fostered in the late '70s and early '80s while working in factories as a way to put himself through college, informed his use of electronic instruments, tape manipulation, noise and unconventional percussion.
By 1985, as a now solo artist buoyed by newly affordable audio sampling technology, White tapped into his earlier teenage fascination with the art and films of both the Surrealist and Dada movements - in particular their disparate and fragmented imagery and sound - as a means to create striking new sonic palettes.
Science & Industry - a track largely influenced by Balinese monkey chanting and the consumer excess of American in the 1980's - is a clear example of "music collage". Photocopy Cha Cha, made for the short animation film Choreography for Copy Machine (Berlin International Film Festival, 1992 / Sundance Film Festival, 2001) moved his music into the realm of early multi-media.
Experimenting further, tracks like Liquid Shadows and Pensive provide minimalist moments, before the drone-like Dream #630 and Forest Song point to a future that included music video works (David Lynch/Thom Yorke).
Review: Fjordfunk is Jann Marius Dahle. He started releasing records back in 1998 and is part of the Norwegian disco scene. His earlier productions has gained the support of diverse people like Idjut Boys, Francois Kevorkian, Anu Pilai, Laurent Garnier, Andrew Weatherall, Headman, Michael Mayer, Steve Bug, Bjorn Torske, Prins Thomas and Tim Sweeney. This album is inspired by ambient, Detroit techno, disco, funk, rock, dub, jazz and latin. Already getting early support from the A love from outer space outfit of Sean Johnston and Andrew Weatherall. He's already booked to play at their Convenenza festival in France later tihs year where he will perform live with Amy Douglas(DFA).
Review: Emotional Rescue presents the music ensemble Man Jumping, with a reissue of their experimental, post-minimalist meets pop debut album Jumpcut, to be followed by 2 special remix EPs featuring Khidja, Bullion, Reckonrong and more.
Formed in 1983 out of the disbanded The Lost Jockey (Les Disques Du Crepuscule), Man Jumping's aim was to move on from the unwieldy nature of that collective to combine the 'systems music' of Steve Reich, Terry Riley, LaMonte Young etc with rock, funk, dance and world music and create a new cross over.
Consisting of studied musicians and created from theory as well as technique, the liberation from formal restrictions took shape over four years that spawned 2 albums and one 12".
Released on Bill Nelson's 'Cocteau' label in 1985, Jumpcut's was critically praised but destined for more discerning ears. The 7 songs - including here a 12" mix of Aerotropics - developed from 16 stave manuscript into live recordings straight to tape, with no sequencing to keep their live feel intact.
Carefully planned but made in the moment, members Charlie Seaward, Glyn Perrin, John Lunn, Orlando Gough and Shaung Tozer's legacy is demonstrably durable, a testament to their originality of thought to an idea of what might be rather than an imitation of what has been.
Review: Remastered reissue of Francesco Messina's seminal LP from 1983 produced by electronic Italian pioneer Franco Battiato.
Messina and Battiato are considered central figures within the Italian avant-garde. Part of a generation of artists who contributed to a radical rethinking of musical practices and composition, they reveal Minimalism as it's rarely known: delicate melodies, subtle harmonic interplay, incorporating diverse creative traditions and slowly giving way to an ever-expanding open space. This album was recorded at the legendary Polygram Studios in Milan and using the most powerful electronic music synthesizers for that times like the CMI Fairlight and the EMU Emulator.