Ten Questions with Nicolay

Apricot Rail
Darcy James Argue
Jeri-Mae G. Astolfi
Félicia Atkinson
Atom TM
Black Jazz Consortium
Borghi and Teager
Kate Carr
Jace Clayton
Nicholas Cords
Cosmin TRG
Benjamin Damage
T. Dimuzio / Voice of Eye
Field Rotation
Stefan Goldmann
Good Luck Mr. Gorsky
Darren Harper
Chihei Hatakeyama
Jerusalem In My Heart
Marsen Jules
Philippe Lamy
Mary Lattimore
Linear Bells
Jay-Dea López
Andrew McPherson
Markus Mehr
Fabio Orsi & pimmon
Simian Mobile Disco
Colin Stetson
The Third Man
Simon Whetham

Compilations / Mixes
Art Department
Balance presents jozif
+FE Music: The Reworks
Ruede Hagelstein
Inscriptions Vol. 2
Rebel Rave 3
Your Victorian Breasts

EPs / Cassettes / Singles
Broken Chip
City of Satellites
Yann Novak
Simon Whetham

Stefan Goldmann: Live At Honen-In Temple

Amiable provocateur Stefan Goldmann once again challenges expectations, this time by issuing a live set of decidedly non-dancefloor material. Recorded on June 29, 2012 at Honen-In Temple (situated in the slopes of the eastern hills of Kyoto, Japan), the release sees the Berlin-based producer moving through fourteen experimental soundscapes before a small audience (press notes clarify that “only a handful of listeners were present” and that the concert was presented as “daylight faded into the dark of night”). Goldmann's material is as carefully tended as a Japanese garden, and the meticulous music he created for the performance makes for a natural complement to the setting, which is documented in photographs within a full-colour mini-booklet. Electronically assembled, the music, new and unreleased material that Goldmann created as part of an artist residency at Goethe Institut Villa Kamogawa, suggests connections to Japanese culture and its musical tradition, with Goldmann attempting to balance bold experimentation with austerity and reserve.

A vocal choir warms the cool surfaces of “Lunatic Fringe / Markers of the Black Lit Path,” but Live At Honen-In Temple is for the most part an instrumental excursion of constantly mutating character. At times, the metallic electronic design is softened by the faint chirp of birds (whether site-specific or Goldmann-generated isn't clear), and its transformations occur unhurriedly and smoothly, with Goldmann generally opting for languid flow rather than jarring transitions—though he's not averse to dramatic cut-up treatments, such as the ones liberally applied to Tuomi's voice during the cool shimmer of “Mourning Eyes.” The sound design draws from acoustic and electronic realms, with ample arrays of percussion, synthesizers, bowed strings, electric guitars, and electronics dotting the stereo spectrum (a beat pattern, too, in the penultimate track, “Turning Point - Parts I & II”). Spurred on by alchemical weaves of bleepy electronic patterns and rabid bowing, “XNR /Echoes of an Era” (at ten minutes the longest setting) could be seen as a microcosm of the project as a whole. This is an arresting addition to a wide-ranging body of work by an artist who's never afraid to venture into new territory, confident that the adventurous listener will be as open to exploring it as the creator.

April 2013