Better luck with music

How much better it is to be patient, and visit Aquarius, than to give into the desire for a quick fix and waste time at Borders or some other soulless chain.

I pulled my occasional largely-unplanned-trip-to-the-record-store trick on Thursday. Oh, it was good. A mediocre, rushed trip to Aquarius is enormously more satisfying than two hours ferreting through endless top-40 dreck at Borders, and this trip was neither mediocre nor rushed.

  • Biosphere, Autour de la lune. This album sounds like it will be a challenge, if only because of the constraints it places on the listener. Most of the tracks are very quiet, low- or high-frequency droning affairs–not bad, but not music you can listen to, or even hear, in the car or on the train. Biosphere’s Cirque is a masterpiece of haunted isolation, so I have high expectations for this. Initial impressions are of every bit as much atmospheric wonder as Cirque.
  • Boom Bip, Seed to Sun. No solid opinion yet.
  • Bola, Soup. This escaped my attention in 1998, when it was first released. I find it to be pretty agreeable, but dated to my ears, and a little too much in the conventional IDM mould. Bit of pre-algorithmic-alienation Autechre here, touch of Plaid there, some ambient washes and fades between sludgy tracks to finish it all off, and we’re all off down the pub for a pint.
  • Fridge, Eph. Not enough listening time yet.
  • To Rococo Rot, Hotel Morgen. The pick of my crop. Apparently, this trio is prolific, but I’d only come across The Amateur View, which has long been one of my favourite albums, before. Hotel Morgen is similar enough in style to TAV to be instantly familiar, but avoids the peril of boredom through repetition of old forms. It combines bouncy, almost poppy tracks with beautifully stark mood pieces.

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