‘Chollima’ is the second album from London-based Sino-Greek psychedelic drone ensemble Elephant House. It is due to be released by Adaadat on October 12th. The record showcases Shenggy Shen’s beguiling percussion and Christos Fanaras’s esoteric synthesiser sounds.
Shenggy Shen is the former drummer with China’s first all-female punk band Hang on the Box. She is also a former member of the avant-duo White with Zhang Shou Wang from Carsick Cars. Shenggy also makes a guest appearance on the the upcoming studio album by Einstürzende Neubauten for 2020.
Christos Fanaras follows in the Greek lineage of ambient pioneers, like Vangelis and Iasos only with an emphasis on deep dark brooding soundscapes and space-age melancholia. Christos is currently playing bass guitar in Daniel O’Sullivan’s band, having recently released an album on Tim Burgess’s imprint O Genesis.
A launch party for ‘Chollima’ is taking place on October the 12th at The Old Baths in Hackney Wick. Elephant House are also performing at Contra Pop festival on August 17th in Ramsgate, and at Cafe Oto on August 15th with Markus Popp (Oval).
It’s release day for ambient artist, Alaskan Tapes! The Canadian artist is releasing his title track, ‘View From Sixteen Stories’ ahead of the upcoming album. The single premiered via Clash Magazine and has received a positive response so far.
The naming behind both the track and the album is a curious tale. Alaskan Tapes found Chuck Palahniuk’s novel Survivor as he describes dancing with a partner on a ship as the ship is sinking. The idea grabbed the ambient producer, as he chose to explore the emotions that would come with this experience.
Alaskan Tapes says about the single, “Views From Sixteen Stories was one of the last tracks I made for the album, and one of my personal favourites. It was mostly made up of multiple extra studio recordings, the drums were from the ‘The Times Are Tired’ Session, the horns were from the first french horn session, and the guitars, and extra elements were added in afterwards. It’s often that I use this tactic for songwriting since by the end of the writing process I’m so familiar with the recordings, I know how I want them to sound, and know what elements can go with what. This track also went through multiple forms, originally the drone at the end was supposed to be at the start with a different guitar melody as it slowly built up to the drums, but I ended up shortening it, and putting a shorter version of the drone at the end. The remains of that version are found on the last track of the album.”
The single is the second to be released from the upcoming album, with the previous one being ‘The Times Are Tired’. Emotions shine through with both tracks as Alaskan Tapes teases us with anticipation for the unreleased.
Views From Sixteen Stories Tracklist:
1. Oh, Seeker
2. The Times Are Tired
3. And Yet They Float
4. Lift Me (Somehow)
5. Another Song To Stop The Spinning
6. Still (feat. Voga)
7. And, We Disappear
8. Views From Tower Two
10. Views From Sixteen Stories
11. Before Sinking
Prolific Ambient Electronic Producer, Mattia Cupelli releases his UNDERNEATH LP via MC Records today! A trio of singles were released prior to this, to foretell the upcoming LP, the last one being, ‘ONWARDS’. You can read about that single here. Within the singles, we saw a clear presentation of Cupelli’s current work, with a hint of where he will be moving towards in the future.
The LP itself is a rare treat with time and thought being devoted to every aspect. The listener is encouraged to take the time to pause and appreciate the album at its full glory, leaving the impression of peace and wholeness that is difficult to achieve in this modern era.
“This album set a turning point (for me) as electronic artist, I tried to merge my neo classical genre to the influences from the electronic music world I got these years, to find and recreate myself in music. I find a deep creative process with electronic music, that in this album finds place on melodic synth sounds, beating drum patterns and some granular modeling. Some of my old fans will get a “swan song” from my neoclassical period, but for those that will continue supporting me, UNDERNEATH will be a new beginning.” – Cupelli on his latest LP
UNDERNEATH LP Tracklist:
1. ELECTRIC SHRINES
3. MONO NO AWARE
6. CROWN SHYNESS
A lucky audience of 200 competition winners were able to watch Biffy Clyro perform a set of 15 of their own songs. The gig was put in place as a celebration to the relaunch of Scotlands XFM radio station. Whilst this is cause for celebration itself the gig was also put in place in support of the charity ‘War Child’. So an all around good event to happen and to be part of if you were lucky enough to win a ticket. Though the audience were tiny compared to what Biffy Clyro have been playing in front of since their album ‘Puzzle’ launched them into worldwide success, they more than compensated in spirit. Being left to sing songs such as ‘Black Chandelier’ frontman Simon Neil seemed pleasantly surprised at the level of spirit from the crowd and thrived on the more personal atmosphere, taking every chance he could to chat to the audience members. Although the band’s set was primarily the bigger and more well known songs, they also treated the audience to some less known tracks and B-Sides, even an un-released track called ‘Here Come The Naturals’. The audience reacted just as well to these as their bigger hits, making the gig a memorable one of theirs that the crowd should feel lucky to have been a part of.
Jacob Lee has released a video for his track ‘Zen.’ A skilled wordsmith and songwriter, Lee is also working on a book – Book of Lyricism (Vol 1), launching throughout 2019.
The prolific producer has written music for a string of artists, including Will Sparks, Reece Low, Marco Farouk, Tom Enzy, Buzzmeisters, Trifo, and Swede Dreams. Now he takes some time for himself, with a tour that kicks off at London’s Camden Assembly on the 16th and includes a performance at the renowned Reeperbahn Fest.
The video features haunting visuals of Jacob Lee in a mysterious house, and metaphorically explores the mind. Cinematic and beautiful, the video is visual poetry at it’s finest.
Jacob had the following to share,”‘Zen’ is a song where I finally come to terms with my purpose. It speaks of my capacity to write about others & how I feel as though I’m able to tap into a consciousness far from my own. The lyric is shaped around self-discovery, hope & wonder as I describe the process of writing from another’s perspective. The verses of ‘Zen’ could almost be described as an ambiguous blueprint for how I feel when I write music, even though it’s largely metaphorical. I understand that artists harbour an aptitude for creativity, & sometimes we confuse it with spirituality or something metaphysical. I’m not convinced anything otherworldly is going on when I or anyone writes music, I just like exploring the concept. The music video takes a slightly different route, acting as a visual representation of my wish to converse closer with my subconscious. In the clip, we see a naive version of myself deep in a maze, whilst the other dwells alone throughout a mansion. My hope was to portray my regular self as lost & confused, while the other radiated a sense of wisdom. I wanted there to be a mysterious distance between the two initially, though ultimately they would connect & the innocent version of me would be shown the way & lead onward. ‘Zen’ was the last song to be written for the record & acts as a stepping stone for the following single, ‘Artistry’.
Skylark & The Scorpion have announced their cinematic upcoming new album: ‘Weather The Storm’, out 4 Oct 2019, via Skinny Dog Records. ‘Weather The Storm’ is both a record of majestic folk beauty and a breathtaking cinematic experience from the recording/writing partnership of Nick J Webb (The Lea Shores / Nadine Shah) and vocalist Petra Jean Phillipson (David Holmes/Martina Topley Bird/Marianne Faithful).
To commemorate the album’s announcement, the Skylark & The Scorpion have revealed the first two chapters of a 40-minute short film that accompanies the entire record. Following the emotional journey of the two star-crossed lovers: the Skylark and the Scorpion, viewers are able to tune into a progressive narrative that will gradually unfurl their destiny with a string of videos, each soundtracked by a song to be featured on the album. There is a new instalment set to be unveiled every week leading up to the release of ‘Weather The Storm’ in the Autumn.
“‘Weather The Storm’ is the debut album by Skylark & The Scorpion; an ambitious musical odyssey that tells the tale of two haunted souls on their search for re-connection. A conceptual project formed around the pairing of creator, producer and songwriter Nick J Webb (The Scorpion), and vocalist Petra Jean Phillipson (The Skylark), the album finds the duo assume the roles of two ill-fated lovers as they traverse through a turbulent story arc told through the album’s captivating song cycle. A true labour of love and a long time in the making, the Skylark & The Scorpion record arrives at the end of a journey almost as epic in reality as it is in its fiction.” – Nick tells us.