Other Music New Release Update
October 11, 2000

In This Week's Update:

Richard Youngs & Simon Wickham-Smith reissue
"Xen Cuts" box set
V/VM destroy '80s sappy pap
"Voyage Romanesque" pop comp.
Die Trip Computer Die
Sun City Girls
Senor Coconut
Daniel Teruggi
Hugh Le Caine retrospective
International Airport
Guy Klucevsek
Current 93
Jean-Luc Godard's "Histoire(s) du Cinema" box set
"Frikyiwa" 2 comp.
Momus offers personalized "Folktronia" videos

Featured New Releases:

RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/lake2.rm
Richard Youngs and Simon Wickham-Smith have been collaborators for
over a decade, creating homemade experimental recordings that draw
from primitive folk music, musique concrete and improvisation. "Lake",
the long-out-of-print first album from the pair, is a seamless collection
of these ideas, shifting from rudimentary sound experiments to free-form
jams and lo-fi psychedelic folk, incredibly dense and diverse. The editing
is as important as the sounds themselves: they pack so many ideas into
one recording, yet still maintain an astonishingly cohesive structure.
Beyond masterful editing, Youngs and Wickham-Smith have harnessed
some carefully crafted experiments with sound. The list of instrument
credits is amazingly long, and includes violin, guitar, vocals, percussion,
hand drum, shakuhachi, clockwork motor, washing machine, pain pots,
cymbals, scraper thing, tape, recorder, toy piano, penny whistle, organ
plus a dozen or so more, a small orchestra of two. Whether making a raw
folk song or an experimental sound collage, Youngs and Wickham-Smith's
"Lake" is a magical album, beautiful in both spirit and complexity. [PW]

[V/A] "Xen Cuts" (Ninja Tune) 3xCD/4xLP/6xLP(ltd. ed.)  $18.99/$28.99/$36.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Cgilbert.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/KidKlive.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Swilliam.rm
Upon their tenth anniversary, Ninja Tune's celebration involves this
three-disc 'retrospective'. But it isn't your usual chronological path
through their history or even one broken down by trend -- how could it
be? Instead, they've put together three discs with a nice sense of flow,
revealing how unified their aesthetic is even as the music flips from genre
to genre. Disc one is mostly loose, softer old-school style rap (early '90s
old school, that is), even if it's stuff made in the past 5 years -- Ninja
Tune's indie branch on the De La Soul tree rather than gangsta posturings.
This disc also shifts to turntable/mixer art -- Kid Koala, Coldcut, Steinski --
but everything's got a hip-hop base. Disc two flows in style from soul jazz
(Clifford Gilberto, for instance) to the quirky, wubbly drum'n'bass that rose
mid-'90s, to DJ Food meets Ken Nordine as an anomaly, and the interesting
Latin integrations of Up Bustle and Out. Disc Three is the 'special' disc, of
unreleased tracks, B-sides and live performances never punched onto disc.
3xCD box
4xLP box
6xLP box (Limited Edition)

MOTOR "Hexen" (Audio NL, Netherlands) CD $16.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Motor3.rm
Man, this one hurts! This Russian basement alchemist comes out of nowhere
(okay, Russia) to bring to you one of the funkiest minimal techno albums
yet made. All the elements of good techno are here: squishy simple rhythm
basslines, wall-scraping analog noise, euphoric build-ups and breakdowns.
But what makes it a classic is its subtlety. There are at least two changes
of the beat on each track, two to three breakdowns and builds; on a few
songs the bassline changes halfway through, for which you're totally
unprepared. It's hard to explain this, because, honestly, he doesn't do
anything that innovative. But he creates grooves that are so infectious and
engaging that you can't help moving. Maybe the following will help: every
time we've played this in the store, people can't stand still. Even the
surliest 'Out' music shoppers' butts start gyrating! What's the difference
between this and, say, Thomas Brinkmann? It's the difference between
jumping up and getting down. (And supposedly even Mike Ink has said it's
the best techno record he's heard in years!) [DH]

V/VM "Sick Love" (V/VM, UK) CD $12.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/sickluv2.rm
V/VM manipulate sounds with malicious fun, and their talents converge here
to make a record of exquisite excruciation. "Sick Love" takes '80s and '90s
songs you probably have cringed at since they came out (these are not
'guilty pleasures' songs, just awful/awfully popular ones). They toast huge
rock and soul ballads from Chris De Burgh, Keith Whitley, Billy Joel,
Berlin, Bobby Brown to a crisp. 'Sex You Up', 'Lady in Red', 'Take My
Breath Away', 'Just the Way You Are': you know them all by heart, even
though you never took any time to commit them to memory. V/VM stick them
in a soup of crackle, usually slow them way down, and re-sing them through
vocoder-ish filters, changing a note or two. In doing this, they evaporate
the sentimentality at the core of a song, making it as sinister now as it
was syrupy then. 22 songs, including an unlisted cover of John Lennon's
'Imagine' that sinks in pure nihilism. A 'holy shit!' kind of record, one
that both elevates and denigrates not only it's subject, but your own sense
of nostalgia as well. [RE]

[V/A] "Voyage Romanesque" (Bambini, Japan) CD $15.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/swingset.rm
An excellent collection of sophisticated, modern pop, both raw and slinky
at the same time. A certain kind of 'lounginess' manifested like early
Everything But the Girl, mellow and sweet -- many of them even use the
same kind of keyboard and guitar chords. With a few Japanese artists, but
mostly Europeans: very few songs here are exclusive, yet most are from
singles of pretty obscure pop artists. The CD is sequenced beautifully, and
the selections seem to really pick up the best songs from each artist
(Girlfrendo's 'A Young Man Ate My Wife', so far the best thing I've heard
from them; Ladytron's fantastic 'Playgirl', originally released on
Bambini). Other notable inclusions: the smooth, excellent Swingset (very
Momus-like pop with Cat Stevens' keyboard sound), a sparkly pop number
from Brazilians Monokini. Interestingly, the best tracks are all from bands on
Bambini -- I now all the more look forward to this label's future releases. [RE]

DIE TRIP COMPUTER DIE "We Are Your Friends" (Alcohol, UK) CD $16.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Dtcdie.rm
Even further out than their last excursion. On "Stadium Death" (one of my
absolute faves for '99), Xentos (a.k.a. L. Voag), Lepke Buchwater, and Ted
Barrow (former members of angular post-punk terrorists The Homosexuals &
Milk From Cheltenham) take their sampledelic concrete constructs into the
pop song-form and beyond. Gather your pals and play "spot the source
sample" as repetition, jarring juxtapositions and utter nonsense reign
supreme! Nine more genre-defying ditties in the rarefied tradition of the
Residents, Der Plan, Swell Maps, Deep Freeze Mice, Nurse With Wound and,
well, The Homosexuals. Highest Recommendation! [JG]

SUN CITY GIRLS "Severed Finger With A Wedding Ring" (Abduction) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Wedring.rm
"Carnival Folklore Resurrection" #5 provides us with our first glimpse of
SCG Y2K, having been recorded live in Seattle this past March. Commencing
with a rather Sun Ra-esque shout-out vamp entitled "I Wanna Go To The
Moon", the Girls work their crowd with all the agility and finesse of George
Dubya presiding over a Promise Keepers beer-blast. "Chameleon 2000"
follows, a maniacal organ-driven raver that leaves the audience wondering
whether Le Ra is indeed sitting in. The remainder of the set exploits their
patented blend of world-jazz-punk-psych mayhem in most electrifying
fashion. One-time edition of 1000 copies. [JG]

SENOR COCONUT "Gran Baile Con Senor Coconut" (Multicolor, Germany)
CD/LP  $15.99/$11.99

Originally released on Rather Interesting, Coconut's own sub-label of Fax,
we haven't had this in years. Newly re-released and remastered on a
different label, its return comes with a few extra tracks. This Senor
Coconut does not descend/ascend to the all-Kraftwerk format. Instead, it's
an excellent and unique hyper electro-Latin-drum'n'bass compound, horn
samples blaring, squelching electronics, with the fastest percussion you've
ever heard. A really spectacular record, it's closer to Coconut's work as
Los Samplers. Coconut (also known as Atom Heart, etc) played live this
summer at Popkomm in Cologne, wherehe appeared with a full Latin band
in white suits to execute his Kraftwerk arrangements. Oh, so fun! [RE]

DANIEL TERUGGI "The Shining Space" (Sargasso, UK) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/teruggi2.rm
Daniel Teruggi, a former member of INA-GRM, now its director, gives a
lengthy CD of one- to two-minute miniatures, clustered around themes,
concepts and sounds. A really fantastic work of contemporary concrete,
Teruggi still constructs and composes using tape, combining it with real
instruments and voice for a complex set of textures. Akin to, perhaps, the
work of Ghedalia Tazartes or even Bernard Parmegiani, only a little more
flip; Teruggi's universe is chaotic without being forceful or posturing.
His 'Fugitives Voix' suite is particularly nice, all sliced syllables, spit
and hiss with faint drones. 'Crystal Mirages' pairs Teruggi's speed
experiments with modern and classical piano played by Philip Mead. An
engaging work that travels, is never dull, with a different tick or sound
around every corner -- Teruggi really makes a place for himself in France's
musique concrete history with this release. [RE]

HUGH LE CAINE "Compositions Demonstrations 1946-1974" (EMF) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/lecaine2.rm
Barely any of this collection of the works of Canada's earliest electronic
music pioneer has been previously available. Le Caine invented the first
analog synthesizer in the mid '40s, the electronic Sackbut. This is used
repeatedly on this disc along with other experimental instruments (like the
Artificial Larynx) and interesting early tape-collage work. Often bringing
his sense of humor into the studio, a number of tracks have a whimiscal
edge: his "Dripsody", a tape piece for dripping noises (1954); his version
of 'Happy Birthday' performed 'on' electronic coloratura screeching; a
bizarre, elided 'Swanee River' made on a mouth oscillator. The CD tracks
like a dream combo of Raymond Scott's edgier electronic work and Pierre
Schaeffer's most lighthearted tape pieces, with a few narrated
demonstrations thrown in. Compiled by Le Caine's biographer (and editor of
the excellent "Musicworks" magazine), Gayle Young, the CD contains concise,
yet complete notes to the work of this scientific, yet fun composer. [RE]

INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT "Nothing We Can Control" (Overcoat) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Intlair2.rm
In which the post-post-rock sound erupting from Chicago and Toronto mixes
with the gentle graces of Glaswegian pop, in light, bubbly arrangements
influenced by Brazil's Milton Nascimento. Oddly enough, they work out the
instrumentation so completely that the singing doesn't sit right next to it --
because the singers are mixed so they sound as if they're singing with
rubber gloves in their mouths. But the thick, nearly stunted vocals are
particularly unique, and so low-key they're crawling under the door.
There's the sense of this 8-person group struggling to create something
new -- and that that struggle is more in evidence than the result. Int'l
Airport, equally gendered, contains members from the Pastels (Aggi),
Appendix Out, and Incense, among others. Their warmth envelops, tinged by
melancholy, and echoes of British folk music peek through the melodies and
reedy melodicas. What's particular great (and unique) about this record is
it's about the most unassertive record I've heard in a long time. Like a
contented cat, you're happy to be in the room with it, yet it doesn't
demand a lot of attention. [RE]

GUY KLUCEVSEK "Free Range Accordion" (Starkland) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/klucev2.rm
This accordion virtuoso's CDs are always lightly dotted with kitschy humor,
but the real charm lies in his dazzling fingerwork and vibrational,
splendid immersion. Both appear here, sometimes on the same track, like
'Aeolian Furies', full of keyboard squiggles and deep wheezes. He makes no
significant aesthetic leaps on "Free Range Accordion", it's simply more of
his concert repertoire--some newer, some older pieces. Many of which I've
been waiting to come out on CD, especially his solo version of Lars
Hollmer's 'Boeves Psalm', one of the most haunting, shiveringly gorgeous
melodies I've ever heard, with so many parts and so much depth, it's hard
to believe that one person is making all of the sound (which is, of course,
one of the wonders of the accordion). Most pieces were composed
specifically for Klucevsek, and use his particular talents and sensitivity
on this instrument that's too often shunted off as a curiosity. [RE]

CURRENT 93 "Faust" (Durtro, UK) CD $19.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/C93fau2.rm
Brilliantly harrowing stuff, something of a return to their earliest
incarnation, that most-fertile mid-'80s era when David Tibet and Steven
Stapleton (Nurse With Wound) constructed soundscapes almost fit to raise
the dead. Here, with the help of Andrea Degens (Pantaleimon), they jolly
well succeed. "'Faust' is a musical setting for a ferocious and melancholy
black magic story written by the arch-decadent writer, Count Eric Stenbock
(1860-1895) towards the end of his life. The CD comes with a 40 page
booklet containing the text of this previously unpublished tale, and a
double-sided insert with artwork by Babs Santini"-Durtro Records. One
single 36-minute long track, precisely enough time to lock the door, draw
the curtains, read Count Stenbock's tale and await either morning or
eternity, whichever should happen to arrive first! Repeat as necessary.

JEAN-LUC GODARD "Histoire(s) Du Cinema" (ECM) 5xCD and books $142.99
Hot on the heels of the release of the complete soundtrack to Godard's
"Nouvelle Vague" comes this huge and elaborate set documenting his video
series on the history of cinema. The complete sound of the series is on the
CDs: narrations by a number of famous actors and Godard himself, over a
range of music, Bach to Part to Saluzzi to Coltrane, a lot of ECM artists
were included, hence the connection. The books contain the complete dense,
elusive texts, in the original French and translated into German and
English. This is the work that revitalized Godard's reputation in France, a
work as much philosophical as historical.

[V/A] "Frikyiwa Collection 2" (Six Degrees) CD $15.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/nahawaD.rm
The Afropop world, as heard today, originates more from Paris than Africa,
and usually consists of ringy guitars, wailing vocals, and 'modern', but
usually tedious beat-work. Frikyiwa nicely pulls apart this formula.
Compiled by Frederic Galliano, the tracks have more traditional intricate
vocals, given over to nice, stiff beats or pointedly clunky glitchwork. Or
a song's beats might consist of it's own sound-substance, cut into peppy
helpings. An extension of Femi Kuti's work, this synthesis of West and
South includes Pole remixing Lobi Traore, Galliano's remix of the
balafon-heavy 'Noumou Foly' by Naba Solo, and Nahawa Doumbia's I.G. Culture
remix, which sounds re-knit, needle clicks and all. It also has less of a
range than the first Frikyiwa collection. [RE]

MOMUS "Folktronia: Myths and Songs of the Electronic Age"
(Analog Baroque)  VD  $199.99
A unique video project produced by Momus in conjunction with his
upcoming "Folktronia" art installation at New York's LFL Gallery (531
W. 26th Street, 4th Floor). From October 14 until November 10 Momus
will be in residence at the gallery between 12pm and 5pm Tuesday to
Saturday "telling myths and singing songs from an imaginary country,
and inviting members of the audience to get involved in a sort of simulation
of the folk oral tradition". In addition, Momus will create 100 personalized
"Folktronia" videos based on input from individual patrons -- kind of the
video equivalent of his "Stars Forever" album in which fans were able
to commision Momus to write a song about them. Those who reserve a
space will be given a voucher that they can present at the gallery where
their personalized video will be filmed. Those fans from out of town can
reserve a pre-made video while supplies last. [TC]
For more information:
"Folktronia" video

This week's scribes: Tom Capodanno [TC], Robin Edgerton [RE],
Jeff Gibson [JG], Duane Harriott [DH], Philip Waldorf [PW].

Thanks for reading.
-all of us at Other Music

15 E. 4th Street
New York, NY 10003