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electronica

This tag is associated with 7 posts

Tomita – Snowflakes Are Dancing (1974)

Debussy’s “Clair De Lune (Bergamasque 3)” and “Arabesque No. 1” become ethereal cybernetic pieces from some past future ideal. Shifting and panning across the stereo spectrum, they sound full of hope, believing in the utopic notion of technology as a democratic agent of social progress and equity. Perhaps Moog would become the first machine ‘of loving grace’…

Róisín Murphy – Overpowered (2007)

Whether it’s the hot lava landscape of “Cry Baby”, or the sweat-soaked swamps of “Primitive”, or the dark neon city of “Overpowered”, or the icy caverns of “Scarlet Ribbon”, or the urban fast-lane of “Movie Star”, or the oceanic pulses of “Checkin’ On Me”, or one of the other extrasolar songs on this album, they will all lure you at some point. And once crash-landed, you may debate whether to try and escape at all…

RIP…

If you don’t know them, get on Google and find out, and seek out the music – because each of these artists laid down some impressive work. From the avant-garde to classic-rock radio, in no particular order, let’s raise our glasses to the following cool cats…

Tortoise – Millions Now Living Will Never Die (1996) • Martina Topley-Bird – The Blue God (2008) • Kate Bush – Hounds of Love (1985)

Tortoise deserve a genre named after them. It would at least make things easier for the unimaginative fools (like me) who write about music. Then I could just say: ‘In 1996, Chicago band Tortoise released this landmark album of Tortoise music that took Tortoise in a new direction and changed the way people would think about Tortoise forever. Only Tortoise can play Tortoise the way Tortoise was meant to played.’ It wouldn’t make much sense, but it would be so much easier…

Mazzy Star – So Tonight That I Might See (1993) • William Orbit – Hello Waveforms (2006) • Grace Jones – Nightclubbing (1981)

Mazzy Star are one of those bands that have a shadowy little corner of music history all to themselves. I imagine they’re still recruiting fans with their slow, sexy, scuzzed-up sound. They were never a popular band as such, but they were a serious cult band. And those bands just keep growing in status long after their official life is over. They were a little bit Velvet Underground, a little bit country, a little bit bluesy, a little bit folkie, a little bit gothic, a little bit psychedelic…

Sade – The Best of Sade (1994) • Boards of Canada – The Campfire Headphase (2005) • The Modern Lovers – The Modern Lovers (1976)

Best Ofs can be strange things. Sometimes they’re a great way of road-testing an artist/band. Sometimes the hits are all you want. Other times you’d be better served avoiding them altogether, and seeking out a particular album. Some bands are defined by their hits (eg: Abba), while others are completely misrepresented by them (eg: Genesis). Whatever the case, this was the first thing I ever got of hers/theirs (Sade is the band, Sade Adu is the singer), so I’m recommending it, because it made me eventually seek out their studio albums…

Marcy Playground – Marcy Playground (1997) • Girl Talk – Feed the Animals (2008) • Jaco Pastorius – Jaco Pastorius (1976)

One band that got lost in the shifting sands of the post-grunge years was New York’s Marcy Playground. They were never gonna be a revolutionary band, but I think they were certainly victims of bad timing, and changing trends within the industry. This, their debut, produced the single “Sex and Candy” which became quite a big hit and propelled them into the spotlight for a while. But it soon faded. And they seemed to disappear from the radar. The thing is, this band wrote some really good songs…

Langley Parks: Soundscapes, Themes & Noise – free individual track download…

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