Despite an initial splash with Brian Eno’s Neroli album, Gyroscope Records, a spin-off — excuse the pun — of Caroline Records and Distribution, hasn’t quite pulled the ambient weight of Astralwerks, its Caroline sibling and home to Chemical Brothers and Photek. Gyroscope began as an American version of the British label All Saints, home to Roger Eno, Kate St. John, Bill Nelson and Laraaji, who also record together as the extraordinarily bland Channel Light Vessel. Collaboration has proven to be a theme in the Gyroscope catalog, from two promising but utterly unmemorable pairings (Andy Partridge and Harold Budd; Jah Wobble and Brian Eno); to its release in the U.S. of No Protection, Mad Professor’s critically lauded dub remix of Massive Attack’s ‘Protection’ album; to its distribution of the Sky label. Sky is home to the work of Dieter Moebius, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Kondrad Plank and Brian Eno, whose variety of teamings in the ’70s and early ’80s (the best-known being Cluster, consisting of Moebius and Roedelius) made them something akin to the Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young of electronic music. Gyroscope has now licensed another label, called Source, from France. The compilation Source Lab 2, released last month, collects a dozen examples of French bass-and-drums studio experimentalism. The stuff kicks. Highlights include contributions by Bang Bang (slo-mo eclecticism, from ethno dub to jazz horns), Zend Avesta (rasty jungle) and Dimitri From Paris (downbeat urban atmospheres). The exceptional quality throughout lends further credence to the suggestion that Satie is the true father of ambient-techno music. Originally published on August 2, 1996, in epulse issue 2.26
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• October 13, 2016: This day marks the start of the 250th weekly Disquiet Junto project.
• November 16, 2016: I'll be sharing the mic at Adobe Books in San Francisco with my fellow 33 1/3 author Evie Nagy for an evening hosted, from 7pm to 10pm, by Marc Kate (facebook.com).
• December 1, 2016: A likely speaking engagement. Details to come.
• December 13, 2016: This day marks the 20th anniversary of Disquiet.com.
• January 5, 2017: This day marks the 5th anniversary of the Disquiet Junto.
• Ongoing: The Disquiet Junto series of weekly communal music projects explore constraints as a springboard for creativity and productivity. There is a new project each Thursday afternoon (California time), and it is due the following Monday at 11:59pm: disquiet.com/junto.
• My book on Aphex Twin's landmark 1994 album, Selected Ambient Works Vol. II, published as part of the 33 1/3 series, an imprint of Bloomsbury, is now in its second printing. It can be purchased at amazon.com, among other places.
disquiet juntoThe Disquiet Junto is an ongoing weekly collaborative music-making space in which restraints are used as a springboard for creativity. Subscribe to the announcement list at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto. There is an FAQ. ... These are the 5 most recent weekly projects: • 0253 / Doorbell Rehab / Record some welcome music. • 0252 / Sonic Palindrome / Make music that sounds the same backwards and forwards. • 0251 / Soothing Sounds for Parents / Remix some music for infants with parents in mind. • 0250 / Soothing Sounds for Junto / Make some peaceful music for an infant child. • 0249 / 80 Phases / Wish the minimalist composer Steve Reich a happy birthday.
... And there is a complete list of projects at disquiet.com/junto.
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