Posts Tagged ‘EDM’

Moby Talks About Innocents Tonight on Echoes

January 28, 2014

Hear Moby Interviewed Tonight on Echoes.

Innocents-250I don’t know if Moby intended it this way, but Innocents sounds like the conclusion of a trilogy, joining Wait for Me and Destroyed, his two previous albums.  As on those recordings, Moby plays the ambient song-smith, crafting odes of haunting and poignant beauty, making a music that sounds like it’s rooted in an earlier, more rustic time, except it’s electronic. The songs in this trilogy are more personally reflective than those on albums like Play, and Moby has become less reliant on sampling and more engaged in building upon a lineage of songwriters that goes back to Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake and Neil Young.

In fact, “Almost Home” would not have sounded out of place on Young’s After the Gold Rush, except of course, for the synthesizer accents and ambient effects.  Damien Jurado sings this lament in a falsetto that echoes Neil Young’s pitch-challenged charm, and Moby’s sonic landscape recalls the lonesome wails of Crazy Horse.

Moby & drum machine wall - Echoes Interview.

Moby & drum machine wall – Echoes Interview.

Jurado is among a cast of singers who appear on Innocents, many of whom wrote their own lyrics.  Cold Specks turns up on two tracks. With a  Norah Jones-like sultriness, she intones late-night reflections on “A Case for Shame.”  Non sequiturs like “Cut off your nose to spite your face, slowly send your palms away,” turned into a searing meditation on existence . Cold Specks gets a dark blues sound on “Tell Me” reinforced by Moby cutting and pasting an insistent refrain and layering her voice in this forlorn, but powerful piece.

Skylar Grey is a singer associated with Eminem and she has the ethereal, smoke-filled voice Moby favors, as evidenced by  previous singers like Kelli Scarr.  Over a slo-mo groove draped in synth pads, and against a gospel loop sample pleading to “look over yonder, the sun done gone,” Grey sings “The Last Day,” a hymn about death an a life lived without being. “You Only just discovered the sun, on the last day,” she sings with resigned regret.  It’s the only song where Moby also uses the found-vocal strategy of Play.

A life unfulfilled is a theme for many of Moby’s songs. You’ll find it in lyrics he wrote for longtime collaborator Inyang Bassey on “Don’t Love Me,” a mid-tempo electro-barrelhouse song about a woman mistreated by a lover.  It’s also in yet another of Moby’s cautionary tales about heroin, “The Perfect Life,” sung with Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips. The album ends with a song as bleak as any Moby has ever written: “The Dogs.”  He sings this one  himself, mourning the turns of life and what sounds like a failed relationship.

Moby could probably play a lot of these songs sitting at an acoustic piano or plucking a guitar, but that’s not his way.  These songs are spun through ghost echoes, shadow delays, draped in synthesizer pads and punctuated with disembodied sounds.  Few can do more than Moby with some simple chords of  synthesizer strings.

Innocents includes the requisite moody Moby instrumentals too. “A Long Time” is one of the few songs that harkens back to his dance roots.  There is a vocal on it, but the words are indecipherable and buried in reverb and delays, making this sound more like an instrumental track that would sit well in the EDM rave of your mind.  He should have segued it into the syncopated groove of “Saints” with Steve Sidelnyk’s march-to-Mordor drums and Inyang Bassey’s anguished shouts.

Wait for Me, Destroyed and Innocents are trilogy of elegies for Moby, looking back on his life and the people he’s lost.  A track on the deluxe edition CD is aptly called, “Everyone Is Gone.” Sadness rarely sounds as beautiful as it does with Moby.

Hear Moby interviewed tonight 1/28, on Echoes.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

Oblivion-cvrJoin the Echoes CD of the Month Club.  Hammock’s Oblivion Hymns is our January   CD of the Month.  You’ll get great CDs and help support Echoes at the same time.   You can do it all right here.

OR

Pick Up  TRANSMISSIONS:
THE ECHOES LIVING ROOM CONCERTS VOLUME 19

LRC19-250pxJoin us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

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2013 Rewind: Best of Echoes 2013 Listener Poll

January 1, 2014

TimeLapseStart 2014 Off Right with a Reprise Broadcast of The Best of Echoes 2013 Listener Poll Results tonight 01/01/2014

What do you get when you take a contemporary avant-garde composer, psychedelic folkies, Indian sitarists and Japanese electronic musicians.  Apparently you get the soundscape of Echoes or at least the music listeners thought was the best aspect of that soundscape.  Listeners have voted and today we’ll hear the results of the Best of Echoes 2013.

A few comments:
Both listeners and Echoes staff picked the same number one album, Ludovico Einaudi’s In A Time Lapse, the listeners by a very wide margin.

Innocents-250Nine tracks from 25 Essential Echoes CDs for 2013 made it to the listener poll.

Five CD of the Month Picks made it to the Listener Poll (Nine made it to 25 Essential Echoes CDs)

Dead-Can-Dance-In-ConcertIt’s the 2013 Poll, but there is music on it dating back from one to forty  years: Dead Can Dance’s In Concert, essentially there 2012 #1 album, Anastasis done live, Steve Roach’s Rasa Dance, a collection with tracks dating back to the 1980s, and daftpunk-1367945965Tubular Beats, a remix of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells.

And who would’ve thought that a band who had a #2 hit single, would be on an Echoes list? We didn’t play Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” but the album it came from Random Access Memories, came in at #9.  Top Ten on Echoes has to be better than #2 on Billboard, right?


BEST OF ECHOES 2013 LISTENER POLL

  1. Ludovico Einaudi In a Time Lapse (Ponderosa Music & Art) iTunes
  2. MobyInnocents (Mute) iTunes
  3. Dead Can DanceIn Concert (PIAS America)
  4. Sigur RosKveikur (XL Recordings) Kveikur - Sigur RÛs
  5. Ulrich SchnaussA Long Way to Fall (Domino Records)
  6. Agnes ObelAventine (Pias America)
  7. David BowieThe Next Day  (Columbia)
  8. Ólafur ArnaldsFor Now I Am Winter (Mercury Classics) iTunes
  9. Daft PunkRandom Access Memory (Columbia)
  10. Bombay Dub OrchestraTales from the Grand Bazaar (Six Degrees) iTunes
  11. David Helpling & Jon JenkinsFound (Spotted Peccary) iTunes
  12. Darshan AmbientLittle Things (Spotted Peccary) iTunes
  13. Anoushka ShankarTraces of You (Deutsche Grammophon) iTunes
  14. Steve Roach Rasa Dance: The Music of Connection (Projekt)
  15. ArboreaFortress of the Sun (ESP Disk Ltd.)
  16. Kitaro Final Call (Domo Records)
  17. Boards of CanadaTomorrow’s Harvest (Warp Records)
  18. Mike OldfieldTubular Beats (Eagle Rock Entertainment)
  19. R. Carlos Nakai & Will ClipmanAwakening the Fire (Canyon Records)
  20. Tom Griesgraber & Bert LamsUnnamed Lands (Inner Knot) iTunes
  21. Mazzy StarSeasons of Your Day (Ingrooves)
  22. The Civil WarsThe Civil Wars (Sensibility Recordings) iTunes
  23. Pat MethenyThe Orchestrion Project (Nonesuch) iTunes
  24. Bill FrisellBig Sur (Sony Masterworks)
  25. Pat MethenyTap: John Zorns’s Book of Angels, Vol. 20 (Nonesuch)

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

GIVE THE GIFT OF THE ECHOES CD OF THE MONTH CLUB

FoundNine of the CDs in this list were Echoes CDs of the Month, and the other three could’ve been on this list. Join the Echoes CD of the Month Club now and you can put David Helping and Jon Jenkins’ Found under somebodies Christmas tree.  It’s our December  CD of the Month.  You’ll get great CDs and help support Echoes at the same time.   You can do it all right here.

ORLRC19-250px


GIVE THEM THE GIFT OF TRANSMISSIONS:
THE ECHOES LIVING ROOM CONCERTS VOLUME 19

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Best of Echoes 2013 Listener Poll

December 17, 2013

TimeLapseWhat do you get when you take a contemporary avant-garde composer, psychedelic folkies, Indian sitarists and Japanese electronic musicians.  Apparently you get the soundscape of Echoes or at least the music listeners thought was the best aspect of that soundscape.  Listeners have voted and today we’ll hear the results of the Best of Echoes 2013.

A few comments:
Both listeners and Echoes staff picked the same number one album, Ludovico Einaudi’s In A Time Lapse, the listeners by a very wide margin.

Innocents-250Nine tracks from 25 Essential Echoes CDs for 2013 made it to the listener poll.

Five CD of the Month Picks made it to the Listener Poll (Nine made it to 25 Essential Echoes CDs)

Dead-Can-Dance-In-ConcertIt’s the 2013 Poll, but there is music on it dating back from one to forty  years: Dead Can Dance’s In Concert, essentially there 2012 #1 album, Anastasis done live, Steve Roach’s Rasa Dance, a collection with tracks dating back to the 1980s, and daftpunk-1367945965Tubular Beats, a remix of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells.

And who would’ve thought that a band who had a #2 hit single, would be on an Echoes list? We didn’t play Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” but the album it came from Random Access Memories, came in at #9.  Top Ten on Echoes has to be better than #2 on Billboard, right?


BEST OF ECHOES 2013 LISTENER POLL

  1. Ludovico Einaudi In a Time Lapse (Ponderosa Music & Art) iTunes
  2. MobyInnocents (Mute) iTunes
  3. Dead Can DanceIn Concert (PIAS America)
  4. Sigur RosKveikur (XL Recordings) Kveikur - Sigur RÛs
  5. Ulrich SchnaussA Long Way to Fall (Domino Records)
  6. Agnes ObelAventine (Pias America)
  7. David BowieThe Next Day  (Columbia)
  8. Ólafur ArnaldsFor Now I Am Winter (Mercury Classics) iTunes
  9. Daft PunkRandom Access Memory (Columbia)
  10. Bombay Dub OrchestraTales from the Grand Bazaar (Six Degrees) iTunes
  11. David Helpling & Jon JenkinsFound (Spotted Peccary) iTunes
  12. Darshan AmbientLittle Things (Spotted Peccary) iTunes
  13. Anoushka ShankarTraces of You (Deutsche Grammophon) iTunes
  14. Steve Roach Rasa Dance: The Music of Connection (Projekt)
  15. ArboreaFortress of the Sun (ESP Disk Ltd.)
  16. Kitaro Final Call (Domo Records)
  17. Boards of CanadaTomorrow’s Harvest (Warp Records)
  18. Mike OldfieldTubular Beats (Eagle Rock Entertainment)
  19. R. Carlos Nakai & Will ClipmanAwakening the Fire (Canyon Records)
  20. Tom Griesgraber & Bert LamsUnnamed Lands (Inner Knot) iTunes
  21. Mazzy StarSeasons of Your Day (Ingrooves)
  22. The Civil WarsThe Civil Wars (Sensibility Recordings) iTunes
  23. Pat MethenyThe Orchestrion Project (Nonesuch) iTunes
  24. Bill FrisellBig Sur (Sony Masterworks)
  25. Pat MethenyTap: John Zorns’s Book of Angels, Vol. 20 (Nonesuch)

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

GIVE THE GIFT OF THE ECHOES CD OF THE MONTH CLUB

FoundNine of the CDs in this list were Echoes CDs of the Month, and the other three could’ve been on this list. Join the Echoes CD of the Month Club now and you can put David Helping and Jon Jenkins’ Found under somebodies Christmas tree.  It’s our December  CD of the Month.  You’ll get great CDs and help support Echoes at the same time.   You can do it all right here.

ORLRC19-250px


GIVE THEM THE GIFT OF TRANSMISSIONS:
THE ECHOES LIVING ROOM CONCERTS VOLUME 19

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Moby Talks About Innocents Tonight on Echoes

December 9, 2013

Hear Moby Interviewed Tonight on Echoes.

Innocents-250I don’t know if Moby intended it this way, but Innocents sounds like the conclusion of a trilogy, joining Wait for Me and Destroyed, his two previous albums.  As on those recordings, Moby plays the ambient song-smith, crafting odes of haunting and poignant beauty, making a music that sounds like it’s rooted in an earlier, more rustic time, except it’s electronic. The songs in this trilogy are more personally reflective than those on albums like Play, and Moby has become less reliant on sampling and more engaged in building upon a lineage of songwriters that goes back to Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake and Neil Young.

In fact, “Almost Home” would not have sounded out of place on Young’s After the Gold Rush, except of course, for the synthesizer accents and ambient effects.  Damien Jurado sings this lament in a falsetto that echoes Neil Young’s pitch-challenged charm, and Moby’s sonic landscape recalls the lonesome wails of Crazy Horse.

Moby & drum machine wall - Echoes Interview.

Moby & drum machine wall – Echoes Interview.

Jurado is among a cast of singers who appear on Innocents, many of whom wrote their own lyrics.  Cold Specks turns up on two tracks. With a  Norah Jones-like sultriness, she intones late-night reflections on “A Case for Shame.”  Non sequiturs like “Cut off your nose to spite your face, slowly send your palms away,” turned into a searing meditation on existence . Cold Specks gets a dark blues sound on “Tell Me” reinforced by Moby cutting and pasting an insistent refrain and layering her voice in this forlorn, but powerful piece.

Skylar Grey is a singer associated with Eminem and she has the ethereal, smoke-filled voice Moby favors, as evidenced by  previous singers like Kelli Scarr.  Over a slo-mo groove draped in synth pads, and against a gospel loop sample pleading to “look over yonder, the sun done gone,” Grey sings “The Last Day,” a hymn about death an a life lived without being. “You Only just discovered the sun, on the last day,” she sings with resigned regret.  It’s the only song where Moby also uses the found-vocal strategy of Play.

A life unfulfilled is a theme for many of Moby’s songs. You’ll find it in lyrics he wrote for longtime collaborator Inyang Bassey on “Don’t Love Me,” a mid-tempo electro-barrelhouse song about a woman mistreated by a lover.  It’s also in yet another of Moby’s cautionary tales about heroin, “The Perfect Life,” sung with Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips. The album ends with a song as bleak as any Moby has ever written: “The Dogs.”  He sings this one  himself, mourning the turns of life and what sounds like a failed relationship.

Moby could probably play a lot of these songs sitting at an acoustic piano or plucking a guitar, but that’s not his way.  These songs are spun through ghost echoes, shadow delays, draped in synthesizer pads and punctuated with disembodied sounds.  Few can do more than Moby with some simple chords of  synthesizer strings.

Innocents includes the requisite moody Moby instrumentals too. “A Long Time” is one of the few songs that harkens back to his dance roots.  There is a vocal on it, but the words are indecipherable and buried in reverb and delays, making this sound more like an instrumental track that would sit well in the EDM rave of your mind.  He should have segued it into the syncopated groove of “Saints” with Steve Sidelnyk’s march-to-Mordor drums and Inyang Bassey’s anguished shouts.

Wait for Me, Destroyed and Innocents are trilogy of elegies for Moby, looking back on his life and the people he’s lost.  A track on the deluxe edition CD is aptly called, “Everyone Is Gone.” Sadness rarely sounds as beautiful as it does with Moby.

Hear Moby interviewed tonight 12/9, on Echoes.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

GIVE THE GIFT OF THE ECHOES CD OF THE MONTH CLUB

FoundJoin the Echoes CD of the Month Club now and you can put David Helping and Jon Jenkins’ Found under somebodies Christmas tree.  It’s our December  CD of the Month.  You’ll get great CDs and help support Echoes at the same time.   You can do it all right here.

ORLRC19-250px

GIVE THEM THE GIFT OF TRANSMISSIONS:
THE ECHOES LIVING ROOM CONCERTS VOLUME 19

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Moby’s Innocents Echoes CD of the Month.

November 4, 2013

Moby Scores Echoes CD of the Month Hat Trick with Innocents.

Hear Moby’s Innocents Featured Tonight on Echoes.

Innocents-250I don’t know if Moby intended it this way, but Innocents sounds like the conclusion of a trilogy, joining Wait for Me and Destroyed, his two previous albums.  As on those recordings, Moby plays the ambient song-smith, crafting odes of haunting and poignant beauty, making a music that sounds like it’s rooted in an earlier, more rustic time, except it’s electronic. The songs in this trilogy are more personally reflective than those on albums like Play, and Moby has become less reliant on sampling and more engaged in building upon a lineage of songwriters that goes back to Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake and Neil Young.

In fact, “Almost Home” would not have sounded out of place on Young’s After the Gold Rush, except of course, for the synthesizer accents and ambient effects.  Damien Jurado sings this lament in a falsetto that echoes Neil Young’s pitch-challenged charm, and Moby’s sonic landscape recalls the lonesome wails of Crazy Horse.

Moby & drum machine wall - Echoes Interview.

Moby & drum machine wall – Echoes Interview.

Jurado is among a cast of singers who appear on Innocents, many of whom wrote their own lyrics.  Cold Specks turns up on two tracks. With a  Norah Jones-like sultriness, she intones late-night reflections on “A Case for Shame.”  Non sequiturs like “Cut off your nose to spite your face, slowly send your palms away,” turned into a searing meditation on existence . Cold Specks gets a dark blues sound on “Tell Me” reinforced by Moby cutting and pasting an insistent refrain and layering her voice in this forlorn, but powerful piece.

Skylar Grey is a singer associated with Eminem and she has the ethereal, smoke-filled voice Moby favors, as evidenced by  previous singers like Kelli Scarr.  Over a slo-mo groove draped in synth pads, and against a gospel loop sample pleading to “look over yonder, the sun done gone,” Grey sings “The Last Day,” a hymn about death an a life lived without being. “You Only just discovered the sun, on the last day,” she sings with resigned regret.  It’s the only song where Moby also uses the found-vocal strategy of Play.

A life unfulfilled is a theme for many of Moby’s songs. You’ll find it in lyrics he wrote for longtime collaborator Inyang Bassey on “Don’t Love Me,” a mid-tempo electro-barrelhouse song about a woman mistreated by a lover.  It’s also in yet another of Moby’s cautionary tales about heroin, “The Perfect Life,” sung with Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips. The album ends with a song as bleak as any Moby has ever written: “The Dogs.”  He sings this one  himself, mourning the turns of life and what sounds like a failed relationship.

Moby could probably play a lot of these songs sitting at an acoustic piano or plucking a guitar, but that’s not his way.  These songs are spun through ghost echoes, shadow delays, draped in synthesizer pads and punctuated with disembodied sounds.  Few can do more than Moby with some simple chords of  synthesizer strings.

Innocents includes the requisite moody Moby instrumentals too. “A Long Time” is one of the few songs that harkens back to his dance roots.  There is a vocal on it, but the words are indecipherable and buried in reverb and delays, making this sound more like an instrumental track that would sit well in the EDM rave of your mind.  He should have segued it into the syncopated groove of “Saints” with Steve Sidelnyk’s march-to-Mordor drums and Inyang Bassey’s anguished shouts.

Wait for Me, Destroyed and Innocents are trilogy of elegies for Moby, looking back on his life and the people he’s lost.  A track on the deluxe edition CD is aptly called, “Everyone Is Gone.” Sadness rarely sounds as beautiful as it does with Moby.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

InnocentsSign up for Echoes CD of the Month Club.  This month,  CD of the Month Club members will be getting Moby’s  Innocents. 

SPECIAL FOR THIS MONTH
TalesNew and Renewing Echoes CD of the Month Club members will also got Bombay Dub Orchestra’s magnificent new album, Tales from the Grand Bazaar.

Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and hear what you’ve been missing.
Echoes On Line

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Electronic Bliss at Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit.

November 3, 2013

logoThree nights of electronic music blazed forth the weekend of October 25-27 at the Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit in Asheville, North Carolina.  Scattered across Asheville’s compact downtown in five different venues ranging from a bar to an arena, musicians plugged in with a range of electronic dreams.  One musician was 77 years old with sounds that date back to 1968 while others dialed up computerized grooves from the future.  And a few of them weren’t really electronic at all.

MOEMS Halloween revelers Photo: Criss Images.

MOEMS Halloween revelers Photo: Criss Images.

The Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit is the child of Moogfest who was kicked out of the house after three successful years.  The Moog Corporation took back the licensing of their name for their own festival scheduled to be held in April.  But original producers of Moogfest, picked up right where they left off in 2012 without missing a step and only making a name change.

The festival was never a “Moog” festival to start with but with MOEMS the range expanded considerable to embrace music from across music frontiers.  The range of the music could be triangulated in three acts, Jherek Bischoff, Silver Apples and Bassnectar.

Bass Nectar in Space Photo: Crissimages

Bass Nectar in Space+
Photo: Crissimages

Bassnectar was the revelation of the festival for me.  It’s one guy, Lorin Ashton, who stood on stage flanked by two laptops with a mélange of electronics in the middle.  I got there a few moments late and as I approached the Exploreasheville.com Arena (one of the silliest venue names ever), you could hear the building shuddering from the bass inside.  Entering from the back of the hall to a throng of bobbing people in full Halloween regalia on the floor, I felt like I was literally sucked into the crowd by Bassnectar’s hypnotic, throbbing beat.  As I threaded my way to the middle of the arena, Ashton bounced around onstage, long hair flailing as he moved from computer to computer, stopping in the middle to twist knobs, tap pads and swirl around on a Kaos Pad or two.   In fact, he didn’t seem to be on stage at all, but dissolved into a three dimensional landscape of shifting images projected front, back and sides.  Giant butterflies, rotating diagrams, digital noise and landscapes all moved in a constant flow.  Electronic rhythms pounded out of the speakers, as Ashton created drama and movement not through conventional melody but a collection of sound effects, electronic glitches and crushing grooves that dissolved before the inevitable bass drop.  He rebuilt tracks from his albums, including his remix of Nina Simone’s classic “Feeling Good.” I wondered if anyone in the audience recognized the jazz artists who were projected in distorted imagery during that track.  It could be argued that Bird, Diz and Max were the rave artists of their day, although I doubt few there knew who they were, let alone realized that none of them were on that 1965 Simone cut.

I’m still from the “If it’s too loud, you’re too old” school.  But as ecstatic as Bassnectar’s performance was, by the end of his set,  the deep bass and the volume, over 112 decibels, became physically nauseating.

Silver Apples' Simeon @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Silver Apples’ Simeon @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

After Bassnectar’s arena filling audio-visual spectacle, Silver Apples seemed….. quaint.  Silver Apples was a drum and electronics duo from 1968.  Simeon Coxe made all his electronic sounds from an array of audio oscillators triggered with telegraph keys. They released two cult albums before breaking up, but they were unarguably the first electronic pop band.

Silver Apples Oscillations

Silver Apples Oscillations

Now 77 years old, a little frail and bespectacled with short, thin white hair, Simeon is the only surviving member of the group. His technology has been updated, but the sound remains almost exactly the same.  He even uses a trio of audio oscillators on which he plays his lead melodies and noises.  He performed music from those first two albums spinning oscillator melodies with the ghost of Danny Taylor’s drums.  Singing in a reedy voice against psychedelic projections, he intoned the largely trippy psychedelic lyrics of the band earnestly, but also with a bit of humor.  It was a charming performance.

Jherek Bischoff Ukelele Unplugged @ MOEMS

Jherek Bischoff Ukelele Unplugged @ MOEMS

And then there’s Jherek Bischoff.  Ironically, he was the opening act of the festival, the irony being, he wasn’t electronic at all, launching this “Electronic” Music Summit with a ukelele.  But then, there’s a lot of arch irony in this young musician. Standing at 6’3” he seemed even taller with a light brown pompadour and wearing a skinny tuxedo.  He was like a cross between Buster Poindexter and Pee Wee Herman with the overbite of Kenneth from 30 Rock.

Other than his electric bass, which was a hollow-bodied violin-style Paul McCartney model, he was all acoustic, playing with a local string quartet. Bischoff makes a quirky instrumental sound that’s part chamber music, part easy-listening and part bossa nova with a pop sensibility.  His set was mostly instrumental except for a couple of songs where he was joined by singer Jen Goma from People Get Ready. Playing music from his twin albums, Composed and Scores: Composed Instrumentals, Bischoff charmed the crowd with his aww-shucks manner and compositions that suggested a more elegant time.  He also performed a couple of songs from a forthcoming ambient album, one of which ended his set with tremulous strings while small bells rang out from the back of the theatre creating an ethereal 3D soundscape. Performing in the lovely Diana Wortham Theater with its plush seats and vaguely Art Deco décor, it was a long way, in every regard, from Bassnectar’s sweating arena assault

God Speed You! Black Emperor Hide & Seek @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

God Speed You! Black Emperor Hide & Seek @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

You could find this contrast all over Mountain Oasis.  Godspeed You! Black Emperor is a post-rock who were more guitar metal and noise than electronic although they certainly spent a lot of time adjusting their many signal processors.  They played the big arena but shrunk their stage plot to a small semi-circle barricaded by guitar amps where all the guitarists sat down, staring at their foot pedals or kneeled down on the floor.   Two percussionists were in shadows while the violinist and upright bassist stood impassively.  In the dark, with only their black & white  post-apocalypse urban landscapes and noise projections giving them any light, they unleashed a one hour assault of overdrive guitar glory, occasionally breaking the fog of distortion for some sweet violin melodies or glissando guitar and glockenspiel in the midst of the storm.

Trent Reznor With Nine Inch Nails @MOEMS

Trent Reznor With Nine Inch Nails @MOEMS

Trent Reznor of NIN Ready to Rumble @MOEMS Photo: Criss Images

Trent Reznor of NIN Ready to Rumble @MOEMS Photo: Criss Images

In certain ways, Godspeed is the avant-garde edge of the full frontal assault brought by Nine Inch Nails. Founder Trent Reznor, in biceps baring muscle shirt, fronted his musically muscular band illuminated by an elaborate light array. They played a lot of music from their latest album, Hesitation Marks, grinding out unyielding grooves to back up Reznor’s songs of anguish and angst.   There was little let-up in intensity except for a clunky Reznor keyboard solo and some inexplicable kamencheh, a middle eastern violin.  Other than that it was all slabs of distorted guitar, relentless drumming and electronic screams.

NIN can become plodding at times, but that wasn’t the case with a musician who influenced Trent Reznor: Gary Numan. This isn’t the robotic Numan of the “Cars” era.  He hasn’t been that way for a while.  With his jet black dyed hair, black t-shirt and black jeans, Numan was a Jesus of angst, flinging his arms out like Christ on the cross and jerking his body in tune to the music, often pouring water on his head and shaking it out like he’s just emerged from a baptismal bath.

Gary Numan Croonin' @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Gary Numan Croonin’ @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Numan’s voice is better than it has ever been. He’s lost that nasally whine and replaced it with an aggressive snarl.  He played several tracks from his latest album, Splinter (Songs of a Broken Mind) and several songs from his later period which mixes electronics and metal.  During a public interview session with journalist Geary Yelton earlier in the day, Numan lamented that people still only remember him for “Cars” (and in England “Are Friends Electric?”), but he pulled it out during his concert and played it with passion, albeit with a bit of a heavier edge.  But he didn’t have to.  This wasn’t a nostalgia audience.  They were as ready for Splinter’s “I Am Dust” as they were for “Down in the Park” from Replicas.  Gary Numan has been back for a while.  It’s time people caught up with him.

It was impossible to catch every act at the festival which featured five venues spread across 15 minutes walking distance with overlapping shows.  But except for two regrettable instances, I went nonstop music sets from 7 until 2 AM 3 nights in a row.

Darkside in Darkness @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Darkside in Darkness @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

They were all highlights.  The duo called Darkside played before an impressively large audience in the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium, considering they only have one album out, Psychic.  Like Godspeed, they favored shadows, standing in twin cones of low, smoke filled light, delivering snarling guitar leads over throbbing electronic drums and sequences like a pong game on acid. They recalled the little known French band Heldon circa 1978 and shared their dystopian vision.  It was like we were all in a bunker with bombs going off outside.

Ron & Russell Mael of Sparks - Life is a Cabaret @ MOEMS

Ron & Russell Mael of Sparks – Life is a Cabaret @ MOEMS

The long-lived band, Sparks,  was more in line with Bischoff than anything else at the festival. The brothers Ron & Russel Mael took the large Diana Wortham stage and planted Ron far left at a single Roland keyboard (which he had renamed Ronald)  while Russell roamed around the otherwise empty stage. They call it their “Two Hands, One Mouth” tour. Apply sexual innuendo here.  Ron has traded in his Hitler mustache for a pencil look.  With his trousers hiked up above his waist, short hair slicked back and scowling eyes behind round hornrimmed glasses, he was like the cranky old geezer down the street.  Russell looked discomfortingly like a Hitler youth which is a good trick since he’s 65.  He had his black hair swept across his forehead Adolf-style, wearing black shirt, black tie and black shorts.  That image was intentionally undermined, however, by his black tights and black and white patent leather saddle shoes with the toes curved up in elfin fashion.

SantasElves-blcphotography11Their show was a cross between Joel Grey’s Cabaret and a Broadway tryout as they romped through their catalog with no accompaniment or backing tracks.  It was an arch performance to say the least with Russell Mael still able to summon that calliope voice.  It highlighted the fact that Sparks aren’t really rock musicians, but performance artists closer to Laurie Anderson than Mick Jagger.  You could easily imagine Anderson singing “Your Call’s Very Important To Us, Please Hold.”  They seemed thrown off early on by monitor sound issues.  At one point both musicians heatedly stormed the offstage mixing board.  But they settled in for an entertaining, if austere set.  And no one loved it more than Jherek Bishoff who sported a happy lunatic grin throughout the show.

Alan Howarth Trick or Death @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Alan Howarth Trick or Death @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

On the same stage, Alan Howarth played his film music.  Best known for his work scoring John Carpenter films, he was accompanied by a manipulated video collage of movie clips including Escape from New York, Halloween II-infinity and They Live.  He assayed his scores with backing tracks while he played electric keyboard and synth-guitar.  It was an engaging medley that harkened back to an older electronic sound.

King Britt Getting Digable @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

King Britt Getting Digable @ MOEMS
Photo: Diliberto

Philadelphia’s King Britt made his second festival appearance with his latest project, Fhloston Paradigm, named for Fhloston Paradise, the resort spaceship in The Fifth Element. Joined on stage by singer Pia Ercole and live visuals from Mike Todd, they created some deep space music that had EDM edges but was more redolent of 70s German space music.  Ercole sang wordless vocals that were looped, relying a bit too much on long oohs and aahs, while Britt played keyboards and computer creating deep throb ostinato rhythms and swirling textures.

Purity Ring's Megan James @ MOEMS  Photo: Diliberto

Purity Ring’s Megan James @ MOEMS
Photo: Diliberto

I only caught a few songs from Animal Collective and Purity Ring, both of which seemed to have lively sets going. AC sat inside what looked like a abstract cartoon gap toothed mouth with projections on the teeth and roof of the mouth.  Purity Ring, a duo called in at the last minute to sub for Tricky, had no staging but diminutive vocalist Megan James held the audience, confidently singing their bright synth-pop.  Corin Roddick held down the electronic side, surrounded by what looked like small Chinese lanterns that the two would strike with drum sticks although their effect was somewhat ambiguous.

Animal Collective Open WInd @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Animal Collective Open WInd @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

I regretfully missed Ulrich Schnauss and William Basinski and I wanted to see them both.  And after hearing Bassnectar, I would’ve liked to have seen Pretty Lights with a full band.  Bands like Deltron 3030 gave massive shows to the rap side of the spectrum.

Alex Patterson & Thomas  Fehlman of The Orb @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Alex Patterson & Thomas Fehlman of The Orb @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

The festival ended with the now venerable ambient avatars, The Orb.  Celebrating their 25th anniversary this year, The Orb is essentially the bald-headed Alex Paterson and whoever he can rope in with him.  For MOEMS it was electronic artist Thomas Fehlmann.  On the medium sized club stage of The Orange Peel, The Orb instantly set the mood with an abstract collage opening of found sounds, music snippets, disembodied spoken word, all swirling in a beat-free swirl.  The full house stood patiently waiting, letting their minds rove free in Orb space.  Then the rhythm kicked in and everyone went crazy.

Alex Patterson of The Orb at the controls @ MOEMS Photo: Diliberto

Alex Patterson of The Orb at the controls @ MOEMS
Photo: Diliberto

This was classic Orb as Patterson picked up vinyl LPs, slotted in CDs and mixed and matched his sounds against the beats of Fehlman and the live mixed video projections which were by turns abstract, surreal and deliriously funny.  The Orb dropped in Miles Davis organ, Easy Listening strings, cartoon music, lots of dub, random announcements, old instruction records and a collage of noise. He didn’t play “Little Fluffy Clouds” but he did slip in the sequencer riff.

Like Silver Apples, there was quaintness to The Orb.  Their techniques harken back to early musique concrète of Pierre Henry and Pierre Schaeffer, only with a beat.  And unlike acts such as Bassnectar, they are avant-gardists at heart.  But they kept the room enthralled with the least amount of audience churn I experienced at the festival and proved a satisfying conclusion to a festival that looks backwards and forwards, sometimes simultaneously.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))WorldsBeyond

Sign up for Echoes CD of the Month Club.  This month,  CD of the Month Club members will be getting Akara’s The World Beyond.  Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and hear what you’ve been missing.
Echoes On Line

Now you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio.

Ascend the Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit on Echoes.

October 17, 2013

Tonight on Echoes we talk to Ashley Capps,
Producer of the Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit

logoThere are many electronic music festivals out there from the Detroit Music Festival to the Ultra Music Festival.  But none have the breadth of acts you’ll find at the Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit, the successor to Moogfest in Asheville, North Carolina.  (Moogfest is slated to relaunch the end of April, 2014) The music ranges from the ambient sounds of The Orb to the new wave electronics of Gary Numan to the dark obsessions of Nine Inch Nails.  Tonight, I plug in with Ashley Capps, the festivals promoter and talk about ukeleles, Silver Apples and Halloween darkness.

Ashley Capps of Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit.

Ashley Capps of Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit.

There’s a lot of great Echoes acts at MOEMS including Ulrich Schnauss, The Orb, Jherek Bischoff, Gary Numan, Darkside, and Bass Nectar and a lot of bands I expect to blow my mind like Nine Inch Nails, Godspeed you! Black Emperor and Animal Collective.  I’ll be covering it all for Echoes, so check it out in the Echoes Blog, on Twitter @EchoesRadio, on Instagram @EchoesRadio and on Facebook @EchoesFans.

Find out about Mountain Oasis tonight on Echoes.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))
Support Echoes by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Choose either a one time $1000 or on-going $84 Monthly PaymentThink of the great artists you love on Echoes. Think of the informative interviews and exclusive live performances. Then, think of a world without Echoes. You can make sure that never happens by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Echoes is a non-profit 501(c3) organization just like your local public radio station. And all donations are tax deductible. You can support Echoes with a monthly donation that will barely disturb your credit card.

Join the Echoes Sound Circle and keep the soundscapes of Echoes flowing!

WorldsBeyondSign up for Echoes CD of the Month Club.
This month,  CD of the Month Club members will be getting Akara’s The World Beyond.  Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and hear what you’ve been missing.

130528_Echoes

Echoes Interview: Northcape’s Spacescapes

August 29, 2013

Hear an interview with English electronic artist Northcape tonight

ExplorationBack in the early 1960s, Bell Laboratory’s inventor, Max Mathews created a lot of the early synthesizer and computer music technology.  His program called Music was one of the first for making music on computers. He predicted that in the future, anyone, musicians and non-musicians alike,  would be able to make music.  Alastair Brown is a musical grandchild of Max Mathews.  He doesn’t play keyboards.  He makes music on a computer in his home studio in England.  Using the  name Northcape, he’s received some acclaim for his post techno-electronic music.  He recently released the album, Exploration and Ascent.  Hear him talk about it tonight on Echoes.

Find your local Echoes station or streaming options here.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))
WavesIf you like Northcape, you’ll love his SunSeaSky label mate, Melorman and the album, Waves.  It’s the Echoes August CD of the Month.  Sign up for the Echoes CD of the Month Club you’ll get great CDs every month. Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and see what you’ve been missing.

Choose either a one time $1000 or on-going $84 Monthly PaymentSupport Echoes by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Think of the great artists you love on Echoes. Think of the informative interviews and exclusive live performances. Then, think of a world without Echoes. You can make sure that never happens by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Echoes is a non-profit 501(c3) organization just like your local public radio station. And all donations are tax deductible. You can support Echoes with a monthly donation that will barely disturb your credit card. 130528_Echoes

Join the Echoes Sound Circle and keep the soundscapes of Echoes flowing!

Bedroom Electronics with Northcape.

July 20, 2013

Now in the Echoes Podcast: Interview with English electronic artist Northcape

ExplorationBack in the early 1960s, Bell Laboratory’s inventor, Max Mathews created a lot of the early synthesizer and computer music technology.  His program called Music was one of the first for making music on computers. He predicted that in the future, anyone, musicians and non-musicians alike,  would be able to make music.  Alastair Brown is a musical grandchild of Max Mathews.  He makes music on a computer in his home studio in England.  Using the  name Northcape, he’s received some acclaim for his post techno-electronic music.  He recently released the album, Exploration and Ascent.  Hear him talk about it in the Echoes Podcast.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

Choose either a one time $1000 or on-going $84 Monthly PaymentSupport Echoes by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Think of the great artists you love on Echoes. Think of the informative interviews and exclusive live performances. Then, think of a world without Echoes. You can make sure that never happens by becoming a member of the Echoes Sound Circle.

Echoes is a non-profit 501(c3) organization just like your local public radio station. And all donations are tax deductible. You can support Echoes with a monthly donation that will barely disturb your credit card. 130528_Echoes

Join the Echoes Sound Circle and keep the soundscapes of Echoes flowing!

UNQOTSASign up for Echoes CD of the Month Club. With the Echoes CD of the Month Club, you get great CDs like Olivier Libauxs Uncovered Queens of the Stone Age. Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and see what you’ve been missing.

Echoes On LineNow you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio

Bedroom Electronics with Northcape.

July 16, 2013

Hear an interview with English electronic artist Northcape tonight

ExplorationBack in the early 1960s, Bell Laboratory’s inventor, Max Mathews created a lot of the early synthesizer and computer music technology.  His program called Music was one of the first for making music on computers. He predicted that in the future, anyone, musicians and non-musicians alike,  would be able to make music.  Alastair Brown is a musical grandchild of Max Mathews.  He doesn’t play keyboards.  He makes music on a computer in his home studio in England.  Using the  name Northcape, he’s received some acclaim for his post techno-electronic music.  He recently released the album, Exploration and Ascent.  Hear him talk about it tonight on Echoes.

John Diliberto (((echoes)))

UNQOTSASign up for Echoes CD of the Month Club. With the Echoes CD of the Month Club, you get great CDs like Olivier Libauxs Uncovered Queens of the Stone Age. Follow the link to the Echoes CD of the Month Club and see what you’ve been missing.

Echoes On LineNow you can go Mobile with Echoes On-Line. Find out how you can listen to Echoes 24/7 wherever you are on your iPhone, iPad or Droid.

Join us on Facebook where you’ll get all the Echoes news so you won’t be left behind when Dead Can Dance appear on the show, Tangerine Dream tours or Brian Eno drops a new iPad album. Or Follow us on Twitter@echoesradio


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