Monday, August 27, 2007

Back From Vacation

New Sounds In Electronic Music

Back in the saddle again..... Disappearance due to deaths, illnesses, parties, syphilis, etc.

Here's a rare little biscuit offered as a hi how ya doin'. Known best, if at all, for being the source of the NWW referenced Steve Reich track, this is an early electronic music compilation.

1967 was the year electronic music broke. Moog synthesizers allowed the bleeps and blorps to come out of the academic labs and hit the major labels. So I guess this here is a last gasp of the old order.

Track one is Night Music by Richard Maxfield. To me, it's the least satisfying of what's here. Meant to mimic the noises of the insect kingdom in Central Park, and it sounds like it. This stuff was fast becoming obsolete by the time this record hit the racks.

Track three is Pauline Oliveros' piece I of IV. I kinda dig this one - it's sort of atmospheric in a way this stuff usually isn't. Still, I think I'd enjoy it twice as much at half the length. It's a bit of an endurance contest, this one.

The reason why you'll want this is track two - Steve Reich's Come Out. This is one of my all-time favorites of the genre. A forward thinking piece that sounds as modern today as it must have when it came out.

The piece starts with a kid in a NY jail telling the story of how he had to squeeze blood out of a wound to get medical care after a riot. A topical piece, then. Reich takes that simple bit of audio, repeating it just to the point of irritation, then pulling it slowly out of phase, watching the voices build into a chorus of phrases.

Then, about 7 or 8 minutes in, it surges into a prime electronic psychedelic wash. Deep and rich white noise. This is the kind of thing Lou Reed was going for with MMM, but with nowhere near the subtlety. No matter how many times I listen to this, that surge as the voices shift to phased noise gets me every time. Check it out.

8 comments:

SchnappM said...

Thanks a lot man, this looks good. Glad to see you're back.

fuzztunnel said...

Glad you're back, too!

sergei said...

Hi!
This is great blog...
But I can't unrar Meck Mark Men... need a password. Could you publish it?
Thanx!
Sergei/

Kevin said...

Glad your back man! A lot of great blogs have been retiring lately such as Church Number Nine and Prostrate Before a Periwinkle, so it's great to see that you have been posting some new stuff. If you have a chance stop by my blog http://eclectic-grooves.blogspot.com. I haven't updated it in the past three weeks, but plan to update it within the next couple days.

Later, Kevin

chris said...

hey. great work!

any chance you could repost Hackamore Brick and Flying Lizards?

(there's a pretty good chance that's the first time in history THAT sentence has been uttered.)

Dan Gr said...

The Steve Reich track is so well known that, to me, it's definitely not the surprise here. It is a great track; awesomely psychedelic. But the first time I heard this LP, I was actually most surprised by Richard Maxfield's track. Unlike a lot of electronic music from that era (like, say, a lot of the other stuff by Pauline Oliveros), it's not boring. It's almost catchy. Most of all, it has a strong pulse. You could turn it on in a record shop in Brooklyn and convince 9 out of 10 people that it's new from Black Dice.

maemaipleng said...

this is a great blog. thanks for sharing this particular disc. i'm excited to hear it!

nick
(http://endofworldmusic.blogspot.com)

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