Posts Tagged ‘Biomusique’

Echoes Top 25 For August: Ottmar Liebert Leads and Electronica Returns

August 28, 2008

Ottmar Liebert’s The Scent of Light, our August CD of the Month tops the Echoes Top 25 for August, but electronica and ambient music make a comeback after a few months off. They include Marconi Union who repeats their Top 5 performance with A Lost Connection, a download only release.  Joining them are Klaus Schulze and Lisa Gerrard’s Farscape, Darshan Ambient’s obviously ambient From Pale Hands to Weary Eyes and Sumner McKane’s What A Great Place to Be, are all electric/electronically based albums that debut in the Top Ten this month.   There are nine new entries this month in the Top 25.  Go to the Echoes Blog to read reviews and hear audio reviews of many of these recordings, including Marconi Union, Klaus Schulze & Lisa Gerrard, Biomusique, California Guitar Trio, Sacred Earth and David Pritchard.


1. Ottmar Liebert The Scent of Light Spiral Subwave Records Int’l Read the Review!
2. Jami Sieber Unspoken: The Music of Only Breath Out Front Music CDBaby
3. Marconi Union A Lost Connection MU Transmissions
4. Don Peyote Peyote Dreaming Don Peyote Recordings/Interchill
5. Gerry O’Beirne The Bog Bodies and Other Stories Self Released
6. Joe Euro Souvenir Joe Euro Music Buy From CDBaby
7. Klaus Schulze & Lisa Gerrard Farscape SPV Recordings
8. Darshan Ambient From Pale Hands to Weary Eyes Lotuspike

9. Biomusique The 10,000 Steps Kosmic Music

10. Sumner McKane What A Great Place to Be Don’t Hit Your Sister Records
11. California Guitar Trio Echoes Inner Knot
12 Kevin Bartlett Glow in the Dark Aural Gratification
13. Sacred Earth Wind of the East Red Feather Music

14. Rodrigo Rodriguez Beyond the Times KZN Records
15. V/A Perceived Distances Dataobscura
16. Steve Roach Empetus Projekt
17. Ronn McFarlane Indigo Road Dorian
18. Hans-Jaochim Roedelius & Tim Story Inlandish High Wire Records

19. David Cullen Guitar Travels Solid Air
20. David Arkenstone Echoes of Light and Shadow Gemini Sun Records
21. David Pritchard Vertical Eden Morphic Resonance Music
22. Niyaz Nine Heavens Six Degrees
23. Joan Jeanrenaud Strange Toys Talking House Records
24. Forastiere Why Not? Candyrat Records
25. Fernwood Almeria Self Released
Ottmar Liebert’sThe Scent of Light

was the Echoes CD of the Month
for August 2008











Echoes Top 25 for July: Marconi Union first Download recording to crack Top 5

August 5, 2008

Ambient chamber music still dominates the Echoes Top 25 for August, but for the first time, a download only album cracks the the Echoes Top 5. That CD is the purely ambient A Lost Connection by Marconi Union. Their album, Distance, from 3 years ago was among our favorite CDs that year, and A Lost Connection was definitely worth the wait. The album is full of plaintive electric guitar lines draped across a mesh of subtle, insinuating beats, synth pads full of melancholy and glitchy effects dropping in from the fringes. This album is more poetic and almost classical in spots compared to their first two albums. The mellotron-like flutes of the “Endless Winter” lend a somnolent chamber music sound across the insistent, but downtempo bass thud. Expect to hear that  song frequently on Echoes Winter Solstices to come and A Lost Connection frequently on Echoes. Right now, the only place to get A Lost Connection is from the Marconi Union website.

To my ears, there’s a very short distance between the classical Ahn Trio and the ambient Marconi Union.  In that light, ambient chamber music remains strong, although only 10 out of 25 discs fit broadly into that camp, compared to 14 last month. The Ahn Trio, Ronn McFarlane, and Jami Sieber remained important players this month.  Ottmar Liebert’s The Scent of Light made an impressive debut at #14. Look for that to be number 1 for August since it’s our CD of the Month.   You can read a Print Review  here, including an Audio Review with music.  Over all, there was a 50% turn-over in the Top 25 for August.

John Diliberto ((( echoes )))

ECHOES TOP 25 FOR JULY Wind of the East 1 – Sacred Earth (Peter Kater, Joseph Fire Crow, Arvel Bird) – Wind of the East (Print Review or Audio Review)

 Lullaby for My Favorite Insomniac 2 – Ahn Trio – Lullaby For My Favorite Insomniac <Listen>

Marconic Usnion Lost 3 – Marconi Union – A Lost Connection

The 10,000 Steps 4 – Biomusique – The 10000 Steps <Read Review or Listen>
Guitar Travels5 – David Cullen – Guitar Travels 

Echoes of Light and Shadow 6 – David Arkenstone – Echoes of Light and Shadow

Glow In The Dark 7 – Kevin Bartlett – Glow in the Dark

Indigo Road 8 – Ronn McFarlane – Indigo Road

Traces (Music for films & documentaries)9 – Michel Banabila – Traces
Unspoken 10 – Jami Sieber – Unspoken < Listen>

lidor11 – Eldad Lidor – Closer
Inlandish12 – Hans-Joachim roedelius & Tim Story – Inlandish

Echoes 13 – California Guitar Trio – Echoes (Read Article)
The Scent of Light14 – Ottmar Liebert – The Scent of Light (Print Review or Audio Review)

15 – Skala – Tundra
Dreaming of Revenge16 – Kaki King – Dreaming of Revenge
Rivers Arms17 – Balmorhea – Rivers Arms

UTTR18 – Under the Radar – I Was There But I Can’t Remember When
Maybe They Will Sing for Us Tomorrow 19 – Hammock – Maybe They Will Sing for Us Tomorrow
20 – William Ackerman – Meditations

Nine Heavens 21 – Niyaz – Nine Heavens
22 – Fernwood – Almeria
Vertical Eden23 – David Pritchard – Vertical Eden
Strange Toys24 – Joan Jeanrenaud – Strange Toys

Peyote Dreaming 25 – Don Peyote – Peyote Dreaming

Ambient Chamber Music Reigns on Echoes Top 25 for June

July 5, 2008

Ambient Chamber music dominates top airplay at Echoes in June.
We’ve been tracking ambient chamber music since the beginning of Echoes when it was mostly Tim Story, David Darling and Kevin Keller, but the subgenre has exploded, in an ambient chamber music way, that is, gently and without many people noticing, partly because it falls in between genres from the ambient chamber world music of Biomusique and Jami Sieber to the Euro-minimalist classical of Ludovico Einaudi and Ronn McFarlane to the folk chamber music of William Ackerman and Gerry O’Beirne. Nine of the Top 10 albums fall into the category and 14 of the Top 25.  When I hear 20-somthing bands like Balmorhea citing 50-something composers like Ludovico Einaudi or the venerable Arvo Part, that tells me that something is happening.  This is another ebb and flow in the evolution of Echoes which has seen influxes of Celtic, space music, electronica and world fusion over the years.  There’s still plenty of electronica, world fusion and unclassifiable music that makes up the Echoes soundscape. Here’s the Top 25 with a few links to reviews.


The 10,000 Steps 1 – Biomusique – The 10000 Steps  <Listen>
Unspoken 2 – Jami Sieber – Unspoken  <Listen>
3 – William Ackerman – Meditations
Indigo Road 4 – Ronn McFarlane – Indigo Road
5 – Fernwood – Almeria
Echoes 6 – California Guitar Trio – Echoes
Divenire 7 – Ludovico Einaudi – Divenire
Nine Heavens 8 – Niyaz – Nine Heavens
9 – Eldad Lidor – Closer
10 – Gerry O’Beirne – The Bog Bodies and Other Stories <Listen>
Translucida 11 – Qntal – Translucida
Lullaby for My Favorite Insomniac 12 – Ahn Trio – Lullaby For My Favorite Insomniac <Listen>
Peyote Dreaming 13 – Don Peyote – Peyote Dreaming
Short Waves (soundtrack to the DVD) 14 – Richard Bone – Short Waves
Sleepwalking 15 – Christopher Young – Sleepwalking
Future Memories 16 – v/a – Future Memories (v/a)
17 – Lisa Lynne & Aryeh Frankfurter – Two Worlds One
React 18 – Robert Rich & Ian Boddy – React
The Dream 19 – The Orb – The Dream  <Listen>
 Traces (Music for films & documentaries)20 – Michel Banabila – Traces
History, Mystery 21 – Bill Frisell – History Mystery
22 – Deobrat Mishra & David Michael – Himilayan Crossroad
Glow In The Dark 23 – Kevin Bartlett – Glow in the Dark
Echoes of Light and Shadow 24 – David Arkenstone – Echoes of Light and Shadow
The Language of Spirits 25 – Rudy Perrone – The Language of Spirits

Biomusique – The 10,000 Steps – Echoes

June 19, 2008

You’ve heard the voice of Lisbeth Scott. You may have picked up on one of her solo singer-songwriter albums like Dove or heard her calling the heavens in gothic chants with State of Grace. But it’s more likely you’ve encountered her in dozens of film soundtracks. She sang fantasy refrains in The Chronicles of Narnia, wailed behind Bruce Willis‘s travels with the dead in The Sixth Sense, escaped danger with Harrison Ford in the latest Indiana Jones film, and sang laments in John Williams’ score for Munich.

It’s that side of Lisbeth Scott that turns up on the debut album of Biomusique, a collaboration with Greg Ellis. He’s highly regarded as a percussionist who works in films, plays with Billy Idol and Juno Reactor, and was the rhythm half of the Persian fusion duo, Vas, with singer Azam Ali. In the Garden of Souls In fact, songs like “Ohroo,” will remind you of Vas as Ellis plays a mountain dulcimer with mallets, recalling Azam Ali’s hammered dulcimer playing with Vas.

The 10,000 Steps
But with Lisbeth Scott, he’s found a different kind of collaborator. On The 10,000 Steps, she brings a classical sensibility and a gentle feel to songs that read like haiku. “The Tender Green” mixes Ellis’s tribal drums with Scott’s layered, serene vocals, intoning “There is a world somewhere, way up high, way down deep.” It builds to a slow, erotic throb that resolves to a tribal coda.

Like a Rumi poem or an Abbess Hildegard von Bingen chant, Scott’s spare lyrics can be heard as love poems or hymns to a higher spirit. The opening “Ananda” finds her calling out passionately in despair and anguish. “Caeili et Terra” (Heaven & Earth) is a lament with Scott’s voice stacked up in Enyaesque choirs.

Greg Ellis has placed the instruments in a delicate balance that matches Scott’s lyrics. On “Redemption, Lisbeth Scott just sits down and plays piano in a pensive, Arvo Pärt-like meditation while Ellis blows some disarmingly affecting trumpet, like an elegy for Miles Davis.

Their name might sound like the product of a scientific gene splice or music created by plugging into plants, but Biomusique is much more about human souls than earth souls.

You can hear a review of Biomusique with sound samples. Their CD of the Month feature show will run on Echoes on Monday, June 2 and an interview with Biomusique can be heard on Tuesday, June 24
© 2008 John Diliberto

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