Jonsi & Alex 'Riceboy Sleeps'
Got an email from sigor ros the other day it was about meeting up for the quiz……well actually it was mailing list thing ,Jonsi their lead singer and his boyfriend Alex have put out an album (are they now the Icelandic wings ?) and you can have a track for free (in return for your e-mail). At the danger of turning into a melody maker writer it is full on “cathedral of sound” seeming starting off like “Allegri Miserere ” with distant synths and processed choral voices (update on having read the email in full it’s uses a recording of the last know castrato!) all with pleasing crackles and pops. Hopefully Jonsi may sing on other tracks.
English Cold: July Skies
On similar ambient tip (if ambient musicians are ever on “a tip”) I got July Skies 2004 lp over the weekend. They are part of the confusing midlands collective that also makes up Epic 45 and Avro Car. As well as by band members they are all linked by the use of washes of guitar and electronics mixed in with a folk and a bucolic rural nostalgic feel. Some tracks here contain found recordings from 1940’s. The whole thing has a theme of war time air fields (much like Sonia’s 2nd lp!).
Both this and on their more recent disc (the weather clock 2008) have a sort of still hot summer’s day feel, the atmosphere of perhaps being in the school library out of term time or perhaps (bear with me on this) the aural evocative equivalent of the smell of an old caravan surrounded by nettles (ok I’ll stop now). I think their Staffordshire/West Midland’s grounding does come through this isn’t wind in your hair, ozone up your nose coastal music.
Of it’s kind and if you’re in the mood I think the best of it avoids the vacant noodling of most ambient music and has strong sense of trying to capture particular sense of time and place.
If it appeals I would try to buy it via their record company as Amazon took ages also check out Epic 45 and Avrocar.