Between The Cracks: Essential Releases From Across The Musical Landscape

With so much good music coming through thick and fast, it’s easy for albums to drop online and go overlooked. Each week we select new records from across the musical soundscape that requires your attention. Happy listening – and don’t forget to hit the links and support the artists.

Albums

Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises

This is one not to miss; a massively epic album and an instant classic. The supremely talented Sam Shepard (a.k.a. Floating Points) teams up with eighty-year-old legendary American jazz saxophonist Pharoah Sanders and The London Symphony Orchestra on ‘Promises’. Through the nine-track suite, they create an endless river of moods, textures and atmosphere. An album that will be on many people’s year-end lists.

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TOMAGA – Intimate Immensity

‘Intimate Immensity’ is the final album from London-based experimental two-piece Tomaga, recorded before Tom Relleen’s passing from stomach cancer in the summer of last year. Relleen and percussionist Valentina Magaletti move through industrial, psychedelia, field recordings, and minimalist influences across ten tracks. Recorded mainly at Relleen’s “Bunker” – the name he gave his house in London. The pair also found inspiration from philosopher Gaston Bachelard. Joining them on the album are vocalist Cathy Lucas, Martin Tomlinson, and violinist Agathe Max. We look forward to enjoying Magaletti’s next percussive wonders and doff our hat to all the brilliant music Relleen leaves behind. R.I.P Tom Relleen.


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Mono Peninsula – Archangelsk

Lovely, slow-burning dub techno, with occasional hints of field recordings from Mono Peninsula, Herwig Holzmann’s music project (aka Photophob). Archangelsk is a wonderfully immersive album full of atmospheric sounds, very dubby, very ambient, usually simultaneously. Grab your headphones and spend some quality time with this fine project.

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Merope – Salos

‘Salos’ is a collaboration between Merope, conductor Vaclovas Augustinas and chamber choir Jauna Muzika. Their musical marriage is this seven-track project based on lyrics and melodies from traditional Lithuanian folk songs. This skillfully-crafted musical gem offers excellent rewards to those who invest the time in repeated listens. If you like music that inspires thoughtful engagement but can also bring you to a state of meditation. In that case, this is most definitely an album for you. Our year-end list has a new entry!

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O Yuki Conjugate – A Tension of Opposites Vols 1 & 2

A musical partnership borne forty years ago shows no sign of lacking inventiveness and creativity. Roger Horberry and Andrew Hulme present the first in a series of improvisational works called, ‘A Tension of Opposites Vols 1 & 2’. Recorded individually during lockdown, the album divides in two, with Horberry offering eleven concise and vaguely melodic pieces. At the same time, Hulme’s four tracks are longer, deeper and darker. Another great work from two great artists!

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G.S. Schray – The Changing Account

Ohio-based guitarist, composer and sound artist G.S Schray returns with a lovely blend of dreamy electronics, delicate guitar lines, and soft piano notes to provide the perfect soundtrack to a world gone mad. The tempo is mainly slow, and the mood is chilled. From the swirling post-rock of opener ‘In Select Everlight’ to the deeply meditative ‘Still, Puzzled’ until the short and exquisite closing piece’ Eye On The Menace’, do yourself a favour, click play, listen and enjoy.

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Prequel – Love Or (I Heard You Like Heartbreak)

Label mainstay Prequel returns to Rhythm Section with his full-length LP debut ‘Love’. Previous EPs on Bradley Zero’s Rhythm Section (2014’s Polite Strangers and 2016’s Freedom Jazz Dance), Local Talk (2017’s Freedom/Lefty) and Lobster Theremin sub-label Distant Hawaii (2018’s Without You) have demonstrated his reverence for jazz-influenced house music, whilst showing a continual evolution with each release.

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EP’s

Dundundun – Dundundun

Dundundun drops their debut EP on Bristol imprint Worm Discs. ‘Dun In Outer Space’ is a rework of the Sun Ra classic ‘Love In Outer Space’ and features a remix from hometown hero; Ishmael Ensemble. On the flip side, the Afro-Brazilian inspired ‘Anansi’ accompanied by a remix from Glaswegian selector and Worldwide FM resident Rebecca Vasmant.

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Bawrut & Chico Blanco – Triangulo De Amor Bizarro

Bawrut and Chico Blanco join forces for a meeting of minds. Originally an outing on the Pen Pals compilation last year, Bawrut and Chico Blanco’s love affair has deepened ever further on this release. Their collaboration has been reworked by friends near and far Super Drama, Beigean, Kristy Harper and Chico himself.

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Luiz Gabriel Lopes – Sóis

Sóis finds Brazilian singer-songwriter and producer Luiz Gabriel Lopes taking the listener on a joyous and engaging adventure ride. This EP oozes class with warming Afro Brazilian rhythms, gorgeous instrumentation and one of the most soothing male vocals I’ve heard for a while. The breezy opening track, ‘Sonhar Feito Planta’, will give you a good idea of what to expect, so just let it play, smile and enjoy. Thanks to Chris Franck for sending this our way!

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CF Smith

Write for Music Is My Sanctuary & Stereofox.

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