This week's psybient mix kicks off with a tune from singer "Cat Von Trap". Cat Von Trapp is a multi-talented vocalist and composer whose solo recordings feature on many ambient compilations (Return to the Source) and whose voice and music featured on the Hollywood blockbuster ''Entrapment'' starring Sean Connery. She has worked with acts Loop Guru , Tim Wheater and Suns of Arqa. Her live work includes sets at the Glastonbury Festival, Return to the Source @ Brixton Academy, Mind, Body and Spirit Festivals in the UK and Australia and Archaeology @ the ICA (an opera which she co-wrote ). I find some of her tunes to be a bit jarring but this one works quite nicely I think. You can find a number of her tunes on the "Ambient Meditations" series that "Return To The Source" released in the mid to late 90's.
Psychedelic ambient heroes "Shulman" follows next with the beautiful tune "Retroscape" from "Kumharas 6" on "Space Teepee Music". A solid compilation that is well worth following up on. The Shulman project comprises of Yaniv Shulman and Omri Harpaz. It is considered one of the leading groups in the psychedelic chill out and ambient scenes and has performed live at large festivals around the world. Shulman's music is filled with evolving organic layers backed by rich harmonies. With four studio albums and numerous compilation appearances, remixes and production work , Shulman has become a firm favorite of many psybient fans the world over.
Up next is "Padmasana" with an epic dreamsphere of a tune called "Be Where Now" from their 1999 self-titled debut EP. An absoulte gem of a release. Should be in every psychill collectors inventory. Padmasana is a collaboration between "Gio Makyo" ( "Dakini Records" head honcho ) , Tokyo DJ David Hikari, and the mysterious S. Widi, their "spiritual advisor" from Bali. This album was inspired by misty nights in Ubud and the mind-shattering "oong" mushrooms of Bali.
The music takes you on a trip through inner and outer space, finally ending up back in the lush, tropical ambiance of Ubud at night.The album features field recordings and live performances recorded in Bali, Tibet, and Tokyo, and varied instrumentation, including: Tibetan mantra, gamelan, Indian frame drum, water drums, bass, assorted Balinese percussion, sampler, cumbus, broken BassStation, Korg Z1, voice, Eventide Harmonizer, tr-303, tabla, and Ubud night insects and frogs. I think it is still available for sale on the Dakini Records website.
"Fredrik Ohr" has a nice sound that reminds one of Bluetech mixed with Ooze and a touch of tribal jazz spice. Wonderful organic robots. Check out his latest CD on "Aleph Zero Records" titled "Falling Through The Earth". Took me a while to get into it but now I can't stop listening to it. Aleph Zero do it again !
"Chilling Goddess" is the CD our next tune comes from , a collaborative effort between "Cell" and "Kali frogz". Cell a.k.a "Alexandre Scheffer" released a great solo CD late last year called "Hanging Masses" which proved to be very popular on chillout charts around the globe. "Kali frogz" are Christophe Fabulet and Eric Brandy from France. Christophe used to play as a chill-out dj for over 10 years and created a radio-show about psytrance and ambient music on a local station. Eric began his music creation journey while working on some old soundtrackers in the end of the 90's. Their taste for electronic music, deep atmospheres and dirty ground-shaking beats led them to create Kali-Frogz. Christophe also has a nice side project "Bobtracker" where he produces a range of ambient and downbeat tunes.
"Hibernation" is the latest solo project of Briton "Seb Taylor". Seb is well known in the psychedelic ambient music community for his work in groups "Kaya Project" and "Angel Tears". The groups display a fine mix of electronica and world music instrumentation. Seb's output doesn't stop there however. With around 10 separate solo projects and a number of group efforts, Seb has always kept himself busy producing music across a number of genres. His work on Kaya Project and Angel Tears can also be heard on a number of popular US television programs. Hibernation is more of a electronic based project containing elements of dub, glitch and IDM. It sits nicely in the "Aleph Zero Records" sound range and is highly recommended.
Next we have a bit of an unusual collaboration that fans of "Shpongle" might get a kick out of. Audio engineering guru "Alan Parsons" ( Beatles, Pink Floyd ) teams up with Simon Posford of Shpongle and Hallucinogen fame and a bit of solo guitar work from David Gilmour of Pink Floyd to produce a very shponglish exploration on the theme of Tunguska. The title stems from an account of a cataclysmic explosion in Siberia in 1906 which conspiracy theorists believe was actually a cover-up for a crashed alien spacecraft landing. You can find this on Alan's compilation titled "A Valid Path" where he joins forces with a number of leading electronic acts of the time. As a member of prog-rock group "The Alan Parsons Project" he achieved world wide fame in the late 70s to mid 80s and perhaps is best known for the 1982 hit single "Eye in The Sky".
Following up next is a long overdue return to the mix by the Poland's mysterious "Swen (Dzoncy) StrOOp" (PsyAmb episode 8) . Apart from having one of the more unusual names around SDS has a great collection of tunes available for download through the free music service "Jamendo". Track down his album "Shortvolution" for something a little more leftfield. Jamendo is a community of free, legal and unlimited music published under Creative Commons licenses. You can quickly and easily search for ambient , psychedelic , dub you name it - great service !
Next we have an awesome spoken word tune from Australian group "Mimesis". At its most bare, the Mimesis project involved sought after producer/engineer "Simon Polinski" ( "Hesius Dome" , "Ornament" ) and his long-time friend, double bassist David Abiuso, jamming ideas formed over four years apart. Fresh from London, Abiuso spoke excitedly of looping minute fragments from classical pieces; intriguing notes he'd long wished composers had explored further. Curious, Polinski sent him into "the cupboard", a floor-to-ceiling collection of vinyl in his home studio. Before long Gustav Holst, Mozart, choral composer John Taverner and scores more had snippets of their music fed into to Polinski's studio and the seeds of Mimesis's were sewn.
Colin Berwick ("Big Country"), a Scottish pianist and guitarist with an experimental bent and Steve Kilbey (singer,song writer of rock stars "The Church"), joined to complete the group.Poliniski has been quoted as saying Mimesis is the "greatest ever work I've been involved in." I find when I introduce this album to people that opinions are divided. Personally I think it is brilliant and hope you can enjoy it too. Visit the "Psy-Harmonics" site for more info and listening samples.
We pick up the beats a bit again with the next tune by "Zero Cult" (Emil Ilyayev) from his excellent 2009 release "Dreams In Stereo". I'm a big fan of Emil and especially "Dreams in Stereo" which ranked high in my "top 25 psybient albums list" of last year. Emil was born in 1975, in the USSR and now lives in Israel. He started making music in 1994, by forming an electro-acoustic band. In 1997, Emil teamed up with his friend Alex and created a new synth-hard-rock project, called “Legion of Foreigners “.
They recorded a demo CD and received excellent feedback. In 1999, Emil went his own way and made some club trance / house tunes for his DJ friends, and published his tracks on mp3.com. In early 2002, Emil had been looking for a different musical approach and changed his musical direction by progressing into downtempo music and named his new project “Zero Cult” . He has three CDs available , all of which I certainly recommend . Along with label buddy "Side Liner" , Emil has quickly risen to top of the crop in downtempo chillout music. You can find out lots more about them at "Cosmic Leaf" .
Another leading light on the psychedelic ambient music scene , "Zymosis" , is next with the tune "Architectural" from the album "Bizzaroworld". Another version of the tune can also be found on their great 2008 release "Elements Into Data". Zymosis are Dmitriy Likhachev (aka Dimitro) arranger, keyboardist and composer, Grigory Sobinov (aka Gree Shanti), keyboardist and composer, Alexey Ivchenko (aka Tigra) playing electro & accoustic guitar and Irina Kustovskaya (aka Hvoya) laying her beautiful vocals. Nowadays Dimitro & Gree are also working on goa-trance project "Alienapia", which has seen releases on a number of popular compilations.
Our penultimate track today is "Wormhole" by Dutch duo "Easily Embarrassed". You can find this tune on EE's 2009 "Planet Discovery" CD. A fairly solid album with a couple of excellent tunes. I kind of like the way they mix in a bit chip tune type sounds. Psychedelic warbling super mario appregios etc.
Finally we have a bit of an odd psybient tune I created a few years back. This is an extended remix version of an "Astrix" tune called "Beyond The Senses". I decided to rename it "Beyond the Senseless" due to the my use of a few choice Monty Python samples. Enjoy. Thats it for this week. Tune in , turn on , chill out.
Artist - Track
- 01. Cat Von Trapp - Reaper Girl
- 02. Shulman - Retroscape
- 03. Padmasana - Be Where Now
- 04. Frederik Ohr - Message
- 05. Cell vs Kalifrogz - Hawaii Transit
- 06. Hibernation - Embers
- 07. Parsons,Posford,Gilmour - Return To Tunguska
- 08. Mimesis - The Beginning
- 09. Swen (Dzoncy) strOOp - Uroboros
- 10. Zero Cult - Seclusion
- 11. Zymosis - Architectural
- 12. Easily Embarrassed - Wormhole
- 13. Astrix - Beyond the Senses ( PsyAmb "Beyond the Senseless" mix )
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