Bersarin Quartett II – album review

Bersarin Quartett II
Bersarin Quartett II

Bersarin Quartett release their long-awaited second album, simply entitled ‘II’.

Somewhat lazily filed under ‘ambient’ (a catch-all term if ever there was one) this is an awe-inspiring and beautiful album that transpires modern classical music, dark and brooding film soundtracks and intense but relaxing ambient music.

On hearing the debut album four years ago, someone suggested ’this music could be written on a lonely island or onboard of a spaceship looking on our planet.’ How apt.

Bersarin Quartett is the pseudonym for a solo project from German artist Thomas Bücker and since 2011 has also included two guest musicians into a band project that has resulted in some successful and interesting live performances, and now the release Bersarin Quartett II.

Bersarin Quartett II includes 12 new songs + a bonus track vinyl only track. References to Stars Of The Lid, Ulver’s Perdition City, Bohren & Der Club Of Gore and Cinematic Orchestra are fully justified; and like d_rradio’s ‘Leaves’ this errs more towards Classic FM than BBC6.

But among the technicolour dreamscapes lurks and layers of complicity and depth Bersarin Quartett II drops in electronica references and even a taste of glitch which all results in one of the most beautiful and moving albums I have ever heard.

Bersarin Quartett – Im Lichte des Anderen
httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5y0nej7_so

This is undoubtedly going to be one of the best albums of 2012 and something to savour for many years to come.  Bersarin Quartett II is both powerful and beautiful, ambient and classical in its composition.  Now I want to see this performed live in a befitting venue like The Union Chapel.

Bersarin Quartett II Tracklisting

01 Niemals zurück 5:18
02 Zum Greifen nah 5:59
03 Im Lichte des Anderen 6:15
04 Der Mond, der Schnee und Du 4:55
05 Perlen, Honig oder Untergang 4:34
06 Einsame wandeln still im Sternensaal 5:11
07 Im Glanze des Kometen 6:10
08 Alles ist ein Wunder 2:47
09 Rot und Schwarz 7:10
10 Keine Angst 3:12
11 Hier und jetzt 6:26
12 Jedem Zauber wohnt ein Ende inne 5:30
13 Nichts ist wie vorher (only on 2xLP) 6:27

Bersarin Quartett II – Official Album Trailer

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLTOAFNXvig

For more information visit Bersarin Quartett Facebook page & Denovali.com/Bersarin Quartett.

Bersarin Quartett II will now be released on 14th May on Denovali.

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Listen, Whitey! The Sounds Of Black Power 1967-74, album review

 Listen, Whitey! The Sounds Of Black Power 1967-74
Listen, Whitey! The Sounds Of Black Power 1967-74

The release of  Listen, Whitey! The Sounds Of Black Power 1967-74 coincides with the release of a 200 page coffee table book of words and photos.  The album is a wonderfully great collection of rare and essential late 1960’s- early 1970’s African-American protest songs and recordings from the likes of Gil Scott-Heron, Stokely Carmichael, Elaine Brown and The Last Poets alongside tracks from white protest singer-songwriters including Bob Dylan, John Lennon and Roy Harper.

Over a five year period archivist Pat Thomas befriended key leaders of the seminal Black Power Movement, researched Huey Newton’s archives at Stanford University, spent countless hours and thousands of dollars on eBay, and talked to rank and file Black Panther Party members, uncovering dozens of obscure albums, singles, and tapes.

Along the way, he began to piece together a time period (1967-1974) when revolutionaries were seen as pop culture icons: Bobby Seale, Eldridge Cleaver, Angela Davis, Stokely Carmichael – and musicians were seen as revolutionaries; Gil Scott-Heron, The Last Poets, Bob Dylan, John Lennon and others. As a result, Thomas wrote a 70,000-word hardcover book entitled Listen, Whitey! The Sounds of Black Power which also includes some 200 full color images of obscure recordings that encompass rock, soul, jazz, comedy, poetry, and even religious sermons blended with Black Nationalism.

Light In The Attic Records presents the companion ‘soundtrack’ to the book, For the time first ever, Black and White artists share space on a definitive anthology of the Black Power era.  A cross-cultural overview that sees Bob Dylan’s out of print 1971 single George Jackson reissued for the first time along with several selections from Motown’s long forgotten ‘Black Forum’ label – Motown’s early 1970’s Black Power militant imprint that has never been documented until now with provocative recordings from SNCC spokesman Stokely Carmichael, outspoken African-American poet Amiri Baraka, and Black Panther Party singer/songwriter Elaine Brown.

Despite their common goal of freedom and respect, many of these activists didn’t necessarily speak for or to each other. Eldridge Cleaver was living in exile in Algiers in 1970 when LSD guru Timothy Leary showed up seeking asylum. Weeks later, Leary was placed under ‘house arrest’ by Cleaver and that moment is presented here. The Last Poets quickly splintered into several factions not long after their debut and several recordings capture that tumultuous period.

Comedian Dick Gregory was as into mocking the establishment as he was trying to make people laugh and his monologue reflects a time when ‘entertainment’ needed to be political to be relevant.

There were regional private press 7″ singles from the likes of the Shahid Quintet, and the Black Panther’s own band The Lumpen. Gene McDanielsOutlaw album has long been a cult favourite, and is represented by a 1970 live version of Silent Majority.

No Black Power anthology would be complete without Gil Scott-Heron featured on a rare 1970’s solo piano take of Winter in America. The international significance of the times is reflected with a live 1969 recording of English folk singer Roy Harper’s I Hate The White Man.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VVNSQpaVBBU

Listen, Whitey! The Sounds Of Black Power 1967-74 – tracklisting:

Invitation To Black Power (Parts 1 & 2) – Shahid Quintet
Free Huey – Stokely Carmichael
Silent Majority (Live At Newport) – Eddie Harris & Gene McDaniels
Until We’re Free – Elaine Brown
George Jackson (Acoustic Version) – Bob Dylan
Dem Niggers Ain’t Playing – The Watts Prophets
Woman Of The Ghetto (Live at Montreux) – Marlena Shaw
Black Power – Dick Gregory
I Ain’t Black – Kain
I Hate The White Man – Roy Harper
Winter In America (Solo Version) – Gil Scott-Heron
Tim Leary – Eldridge Cleaver
Angela – John Lennon & Yoko Ono
Free Bobby Now – The Lumpen
Die Nigga!!! – The Original Last Poets
Who Will Survive America – Amiri Baraka

Listen, Whitey, The Sounds of Black Power 1967-1974 is out now on Light In the Attic (CD, 2xLP, & Digital Download)

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Nedry – New Single, Album & UK Dates

Nedry are a three-piece hailing from London, Osaka and Bristol whose distillation of advanced rhythmic structures, low frequencies and raw human tones stand uniquely at a fascinating sonic crux of leftfield, club and indie juncture.  They release a new single, ‘Violaceae’ on Monday 5th March.

‘Violaceae’ is a good introduction to Nedry’s music which lurks somewhere between Massive Attack, Bjork & The XX.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3apbZ1_L5hc

Drawing on T. S. Eliot’s ‘Four Quartets’ and the gothic undertones of David Lynch, ‘Violaceae’ sees vocalist, Ayu, revelling in ruminations urging acceptance of the shadows; permitting the darkness to settle, carried along by the melodic, half-step soundscapes around her.

The digital download-only single will include a new edit of ‘Violaceae’ plus two remixes of the track by Polinski and Gazelle Twin.

Violaceae proceeds Nedry‘s new album ‘In A Dim Light‘, which is due for release on 12th March 2012 on Monotreme.

The album will be released on CD, digital download and as a limited pressing of 500 180gm vinyl (200 black, 300 white) LP.

All pre-orders from the Monotreme Records web shop will also receive 2 digital bonus tracks not found on the album, plus stickers and pins while supplies last.

You can pre-order the single and album from Monotreme Records.

To help promote the release of the album & single, Nedry will be playing some live UK dates in April.

Nedry UK Tour Dates
24 April – The Hope, Brighton
25 April – The Lexington, London
26 April – The Croft, Bristol
27 April – Bodega, Nottingham
28 April – Deaf Institute, Manchester

“When a band is as good, as versatile and as daring as Nedry, you hope the wider world will stand up and take notice.” – Huw Stephens, BBC Radio1

For more information visit www.nedrymakesmusic.com.

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