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Archives by month/year

Welcome to Freq in 2017

Freq has been online in various forms since April 1998; this iteration has been around as of 2010, with an archive of older material available — see below.

Please scroll down and on for the most recent reviews; see also the archives index for 1998-2009 below while there is also an A-Z index of everything posted so far.

The bulk of the record reviews 1998-2008 are in the following pages — as time allows they are being converted to the newer, searchable format:
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Oriental Sunshine – Dedicated To The Bird We Love

Round 2

Oriental Sunshine - Dedicated To The Bird We LoveOriental Sunshine‘s sole album, Dedicated To The Bird We Love is one of those treats that come along rarely in our musical travels. A psychedelic folk album recorded in Norway in 1969 with a surprising Eastern influence, it received a release from Philips back in the day but sold poorly and sadly, the band spilt not long after, releasing nothing more.

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Simon Whetham / Bang The Bore – Drowning Electret / Twelve Tapes

Every Contact Leaves A Trace

It seems like only a few weeks ago that I was reviewing the last batch of ECLAT releases (and that was largely due to my tardiness), yet here we are in 2017 with another pair of releases. I gather that these were released fairly late in the day of 2016 because label-mogul Seth Cooke wanted to get them out that side of the new year. Check out the website for a bundle deal — all of them have lovely packaging and what could falsely be described as “copious” liner notes (there’s a minimum of information about source material etc, which is part of the label concept, possibly, of not giving the game away).

Simon WhethamDrowning Electret

Simon Whetham - Drowning Electret“Whetham

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Piano Magic – Closure

Second Language

Piano Magic - ClosureAfter twenty years of exploration, Glen Johnson (one of the tirade that first initiated the project and its lasting member) is closing the lid on and drawing a line under everything Piano Magic, and as the glissotronic swirls clear on the opening track, he’s straight in there voicing his opinion on the matter to lush orchestrated folds.

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Mike Wexler – Syntropy

three:four Mike Wexler - Syntropy This is Mike Wexler‘s third album, originally recorded in 2013/4 and thankfully receiving a belated release through the lovely people at three:four. It has the feel of being magically recorded in some sunlit glade hidden far from view; and as it it transpires, it was recorded in rural Vermont, the studio lurking in a wood there and that image pervades the whole album.

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Stereocilia – The Road To The Unconscious Past

Echoic Memory

Stereocilia - The Road To The Unconscious PastThis self-financed five-tracker from Stereocilia nails you to the spot cinematically. The sun-caught melodics of “River” holding you hostage with its Basho/Fahey sense of openness and fertile flourishes, as does that dissolving warmth in the loopage that emotionally flies off the handle at any given point.

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Moebius – Musik Für Metropolis

Bureau B Moebius - Musik Für MetropolisBack in 2012, Dieter Moebius was asked to score Fritz Lang‘s Metropolis and for that purpose produced some pre-arranged tracks to be played during the film which along with some live improvisation would suit the film as he saw it. One imagines that this would have been a roaring success, and therefore he had intended to prepare a recorded album of the results.

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Banco de Gaia – 9th Of Nine Hearts

Disco Gecko

Banco de Gaia - 9th Of Nine HeartsAfter some wonderful reissues of classic albums with a plethora of extras, here is Banco de Gaia’s long -awaited new album; and typically the sound of this album moves off into different directions that Toby Marks may have only touched upon before.

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Iannis Xenakis – La Légende d’’Eer

Karlrecords

Iannis Xenakis - La Légende d'EerThe classic thing to say about Iannis Xenakis is that he’s fairly close to being sui generis. Oftentimes, that’s the sort of compliment that can feel fairly weak — which is to say that there’s not a musician operating that doesn’t think they’re not sui generis, but the majority of them are wrong.

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Rothko – A Young Fist Curled Around A Cinder For A Wager

Trace

Rothko - A Young Fist Curled Around A Cinder For A WagerIt has been nearly twenty years since we first marvelled at the extraordinary sounds and textures that three gents could elicit from bass guitars. Catching them in support of Appliance was a revelation and following Mark Beazley‘s mercurial career has been both fascinating and frustrating. I haven’t heard much since the Stateless solo album, but 2016 saw the delivery of not one but two albums.

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Bangladeafy – Narcopaloma

Nefarious Industries

Bangladeafy - NarcopalomaSo the main reason I picked up this record for review is because I think that it’s the responsibility of the writer to pick up things for spurious reasons. The reason I will never review, or listen to, Jaga Jazzist is because the name is terrible. Bangladeafy is an awesome name.

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Various Artists – Underground French Pop: The Sound of Freaksville 2006-2016

Freaksville

Underground French Pop: The Sound of Freaksville 2006-2016This comes from a world that feels very familiar to being a teenager listening to indie radio, but also not. There was a lot of this kind of stuff around — retro-ish fetishists for ersatz ’70s string arrangements and Rhodes pianos

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Boris / The Broken Oak Duet (live at The Electric Ballroom)

London 13 December 2016

Boris live Decemebr 2016 Boris are back! One of Japan’s finest rock bands are back in town to celebrate the tenth anniversary of their crossover hit album Pink, by… well, by playing it, obviously!

But first we get The Broken Oak Duet, who I don’t want to sound too mean about, because they kick out quite a noise between the two of them. They’re tight, focused and rock hard; their real problem is that they’re maybe a little TOO tight and focused — it’s all a bit precision-engineered.

They’ve got the technique and the discipline, but what they’re really lacking is some craziness and chaos. They’ve got all the riffs and big sound you could ask for, and would make a kick-ass

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Purson (live at The Lexington)

London 15 December 2016

Purson live December 2016 -0Winter in Britain in 2016 is grey, dreary affair, the trains are on strike nearly everyday, the post office is on strike and now you can’t even get away from it all as the staff on the airplanes are on strike. What is needed is the wonderful colourful psychedelic landscapes that only Purson can create to brighten up a dull winter’s day. There is, however, just one problem…

2016 has been the year that great music suffered. Apart from the deaths of legends like Bowie and Keith Emerson etc, etc, several good bands did not survive the year either, including Virginia Monti’s wonderful Psychedelic Witchcraft. Unfortunately Purson will not be spreading their wonderful music into 2017 as tonight’s show sadly is their final concert.

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Expo Seventy – America Here And Now Sessions

Essence Music

Expo Seventy - America Here & Now SessionsRecorded as part of a travelling art exposition of the same name, the sessions released as America Here And Now finds Expo Seventy in a rare four-piece configuration, mainstay Justin Wright joined for the sessions recorded in Kansas City by Aaron Osborne of Monta At Odds and Mysterious Clouds on bass alongside drummers Mike Vera (Shroud Of Winter) and David Williams.

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