Icelandic producer Yagya (Aðalsteinn Guðmundsson) has been creating atmospheres through melody and sounds for more than a decade. A definitive member of the Thule Musik collective, Yagya also is known for the softer side of music and avoids heavy rhythms. A student of computer science at the University of Iceland Yagya spended his free time creating music on his computer. He concentrates on atmospheres and moods and tries to reflect the beauty of the world around him in the sounds of his music. His influences are the works of Gas, Philip Glass, Basic Channel, Brian Eno. On his 3rd album, Yagya concentrates on rain as Rigning means that in Icelandic. While listening to this album, I couldn’t tell if tell if the sound of the rain is coming from outside, or strictly from my headphones. The subdued dubbed out bass patterns and swelling pad sweeps shove me towards the lazy train against my will. The emphasis here is on the surronding atmosphere, since the background pulsing beat exists purely as the rhythmic glue around the wet structure. From beginning to end, the album is a complete conceptual piece wrapped around variations on the main theme, from simplistic track titles (counting up from one to ten) to careful selection of atmospheric elements, to delayed dub minor chords in maintained perfect harmony. It is an album you must hear in its entirety. Over and over.
Yagya is definitely in a class of his own when it comes to dub techno. The Rhythm of Snow and Will I Dream… were both albums full of elements of house, ambient and of course, techno. Highly recommended if you like Gas, Biosphere, Intrusion, Echospace and Basic Channel sound. Rigning sjo is already on my first Dub tech mix and so was Snowflake on the second volume from the album Rhythm of the snow.
Yagya : Rigning Sjö [Rigning : 2009 : Sending orbs]
The Black Dog latest album, entitled Music For Real Airports, is an experimentation that combines new music with segments from over 200 hours of field recordings from airports in an effort to explore the ideas and associations that people have with them today. Airports have some of the glossiest surfaces in modern culture, but the fear underneath remains. Hence this record is not a utilitarian accompaniment to airports, in the sense of reinforcing the false utopia and fake idealism of air travel. Although the drone-based first section of the record could be considered ambient, the album’s second half sees the group explore dubstep-influenced beats and intense dark percussion before things settle down again. The Black Dog will also perform music live from Music For Real Airports in Sheffield.
While the album’s title obviously refers to Brian Eno’s 1978 album, The Black Dog take a different approach. This is music about a space rather than for it. Many of the compositions were created while waiting in airports, which makes for some uneasy listening. Field recordings guide listeners on a journey from roadway to curb-side to terminal : Passport Control, for instance, is an exercise in breath control with a sigh of relief at the end. On M1 traffic noise mixes with long, cool drones. Stuff that is highly soothing and with an interesting approach to electronic production.
Black dog : M1 [2010 : Music for real airports @ Soma records]
A brand new mix by Nic B from Quebec city. It features the likes of Claude Von Stroke, Steve Lawler, Phonogenic (my favorite on the mix), Burnski, The wighnomy brothers remixing Adultnapper and Mood II Swing’s All night long which closes the mix that clocks in at almost 100 minutes ! One amazing discovery was UK duo Glimpse on Crosstown rebels. What I especially like about this mix is his idosyncratic track selection ; just a good round up of tech and funky deep house, not to mention the top notch mixing skills of our friend, who’s been mixing new wave, disco, house and techno for the last 25 years. Kids and DJ wannabe playing awful fidget house take note. Go to this address in order to download the mix.