Art Culture Review Synth

Passepartout Duo – Epigrams

AIR Niederösterreich and the Ernst Krenek Institut.  Release: 26th Feb

After Benge’s quite fantastic Loop Series One reviewed last November, we didn’t expect to get sent any more music made on an original Buchla 100 system, simply because there is only a handful of them left in the world. How wrong we were!

The particular system used in this new release, sent in by Nicoletta Favari & Christopher Salvito, aka Passepartout Duo, was built by Don in 1967 for composer Ernst Krenek, who used the synth alongside piano.

Flash forward to 2021 and the (still operational) system resides in Krems an der Donau, a small town near Vienna. Lucky for local musicians Passepartout Duo (and by proxy, all of us), who have used the 100 system alongside piano in five considered pieces, inspired by the original works of Krenek, to great effect.

Art Film

Here Is Elsewhere – Sarah Wood

“Right now, for the preservation of life, the citizen is being asked to isolate by staying remote and staying still. Stillness and fixity after an age of speed and motion – it’s quite a shock. Later art can analyse this time; now it can only chronicle it, notice the way in which, in unprecedented times, new phenomena surprise us.

Here’s one. In a sudden and involuntary response to stillness, people are starting to travel without moving. People are voyaging in their minds to visualize places remote from the ones they inhabit. Stillness and fixity, it seems, have unleashed the volition and freedom of our imaginations. Our minds are supplying what the world cannot: waking visions, nighttime dreams, compensating for our circumscribed existence – healing us by making associations. Overnight we’ve become nomads of the imagination – our minds reaching out to others across the world.

Here is Elsewhere is an essay film about this psychological phenomenon, asking whether transformations in perception will enable us to think and live differently in the future.”

Acid Review

Yuri Suzuki – Thanet House EP

Accidental Jnr – Release: 26th March 2021

With 21 years in the biz, Accidental celebrates with the ‘Thanet House EP’, from London-based Yuri Suzuki. Well known in the design and music worlds, here Suzuki brings us a no frills and quite frankly, faultless, 3-track acid release. The kind of house we enjoy here in the Flatlands. Yes, it treads the tried and tested pathway, laid out by Mr. Fingers, Armando et al. But it’s a formula that simply works and directly equates to physical forms wigging out on a dancefloor.

Experimental Minimal Review Synth

Lampeo – The Electric Music Box ‘Year One’

An intriguing audio diary of sketches, taken on the Buchla Music Easel and recorded over a year. Lampeo really highlights the character and range of the instrument here, deftly using looping and spacial effects to layer the sounds, which range from the percussive to the melodic.

1974 Buchla ‘Electric Music Box’ (aka Music Easel)

The instrument itself has a unique tone, due to the additive nature of the primary oscillator and an analogue signal path that differs significantly from traditional subtractive synthesisers. There’s so much info out there already on the Easel, that I wont bore you with the same old stories. However, it’s worth noting that a large proportion of the online demonstrations using the Easel really do not represent the capabilities of the instrument, which takes time and dedication to master. Something Lampeo is highlighting in this release and firmly stamping their compositional mark.

Ambient Culture Film

Susumu Taka – Bright Days & Peaceful Nights

On a cold, snowy evening of the social distanced winter of 2021 we take stock and drift back not so many months to the warm summer of 2019 when this video was shot, on a mini-DV Handycam, in various locations around Felixstowe. The music is inspired by Japanese Environmental music and was composed on Nanoloop IOS. If you want more visit Penname records.

Electro Review Synth

Center of the Universe – Interabangerz

Skweee survivor Center of the Universe comes correct, with a new EP of social media-themed boogie trax. What ever they are putting in the water up in Norway, we could do with some! File under funk.