mon 22/04/2024

Minimalism

Album: Anoushka Shankar - Chapter II: How Dark It Is Before Dawn

We’ve come a long way since 1971, when the audience at Madison Square Garden for the Concert for Bangladesh applauded when Ravi Shankar tuned up. Western audiences were first exposed to the sitar in 1965 when George Harrison played one on Rubber...

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Uproar, Rafferty, Royal Welsh College, Cardiff review - a rare spring in the new music step

It’s not often one comes out of a concert of mainly new works with a spring in one’s step. A sigh of relief is rather more usual. But this concert on Thursday by the Welsh new music ensemble Uproar was an exception, partly but by no means...

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Album: Laetitia Sadier - Rooting for Love

It must be kind of unreal living in the Stereolab universe.A band of geeky introverts, beloved of the type of hairclip-and-satchel indie ultras a friend of mine used to call “the Scooby Gang” for their tendency to resemble Shaggy and Velma, over the...

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When Forms Come Alive, Hayward Gallery review - how to reduce good art to family fun

Under the guidance of director Ralph Rugoff, the Hayward Gallery seems hell bent on reducing art to the level of fun for all the family. And as though to prove the point, cretinous captions strip the work of all meaning beyond the banal, while press...

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Paraorchestra, Hazlewood, Southbank Centre review - re-thinking the orchestral experience

The Clore Ballroom at the Southbank Centre is usually an open-plan space within the foyer, a little ambiguous in its extent and purpose. Last night, for the first time, I saw it enclosed and separated off, ambiently lit and full of smoke, for the...

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Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Currie, Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh review - maximum minimalism

Chameleon among orchestras, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra hung up its habitual classical cloak in favour of an evening of 20th and 21st century minimalism, curated, presented, and conducted by the star percussionist Colin Currie.That this was a...

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Roomful of Teeth, Milton Court review - mellifluous minimalism with a mild manner

If there’s a better name for a vocal group than Roomful of Teeth I have yet to come across it. But if it conjures up images of brash, in-your-face showbiz the reality couldn’t be more different.This hip Grammy-winning American ensemble bill...

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Album: Sigur Rós - ÁTTA

It’s easy to take Sigur Rós’s emotive force for granted. So ubiquitous has their 2005 “Hoppípolla” been on everything from talent shows to apocalyptic environmental collapse documentaries to lyrical scenes of birds in flight that it became the...

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Album: Linnéa Talp - Arch of Motion

Contrary to the title’s implication, there initially seems to be little movement in Arch of Motion. A note is held on an organ. Then another note comes in and is also held. Chords build up gradually. Maybe one or two ascending or descending notes...

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Album: Plastikman & Chilly Gonzales - Consumed in Key

The three Canadians Richie Hawtin (Plastikman), Jason Beck (Chilly Gonzales) and Tiga Sontag (aka just Tiga, who exec produced this album) are each so laden with image and persona it is easy to forget they are musicians sometimes. Hawtin has since...

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Album: Black Dice - Mod Prog Sic

There’s a strand of music that a friend of mine once referred to as “Caveman Electronics”, which snakes through the decades, never quite becoming a genre. It’s surfaced in scenes and moments like postpunk and electroclash, you can hear it in bands...

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Album: The Soft Pink Truth - Shall We Go On Sinning So That Grace May Increase?

Drew Daniel is never short of concepts, invention or mischief. As one half of Matmos, with his life partner M.C. Schmidt, he has made some 10 official albums and many more collaborative ones – all pushing the boundaries of electronic bricolage and...

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