Team.Radio: post post rock?

I have to admit that somehow, by now, sinewave.com.br starts to make me wonder… I already did put down my enthusiasm about Uppsala Solemne a bit earlier, but, no matter whether listening to latest releases of Ruido/MM, Sobre A Maquina, the incredible This Lonely Crowd and a bunch of others: Most of the recent Sinewave releases are exceptionally strong, not just from a netaudio / netlabel perspective, and definitely all the releases this label has issued so far are above average.

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And the “Summertime” EP by Team.Radio is in no way an exception from that rule. Five songs, next to 38 minutes playing time, and a rather strong musical statement. Maybe “post rock” these days is a genre description just like any other, but in some way, it seems the girl and the four guys from Refice, Brazil, manage to actually do as you would expect dealing with post rock, leaving behind a bunch of genre boundaries and musical limitations, creating a moody and inspired acoustic experience in between, well, various kinds of progressive rock, jazz, “classic” rock (whatever that might be) and more recent shoegaze music. In some ways, this music seems dominated by various different influences: “Vegas”, the third track, brings reminiscences to German Element Of Crime. There are keyboard / organ passages slightly reminding me of Alan Parsons Project. There are ska’ish-early-Police guitar parts, there are some moments that might have grown out of listening to Pink Floyd or Rush even – yet, all these without being simple rip-offs or copies of the “might-be-originals”, and, given the band page does list some other names as influences, maybe these semblances are just incidentally.

And then, of course, there also are moments completely different. “Come on”, in example, which throughout its initial passages is massively “musique noir”, one really might think to see vocalist Marina sitting in front of a piano in a dark jazz club long past midnight. And there is the 13 minutes epos “Albatross”, maybe closest to what to be found as “post-rock” these days, and an impressive monument as such – at least, to me. There’s not much to add here, I guess. The musicians definitely know their stuff, songwriting is effective and inspiring throughout all these tracks and, even slightly reminding me of a lot of different bands, always sounded original and homogenous. Vocals do stand out a little in my opinion, though, as the band is really good at knowing what their vocalist is best at and how to make use of that most effectively. So, overally: Highly recommended. Waiting what this band will be up to, in the future. And kudos to Sinewave for another great release.

Uppsala Solemne: an alternative approach to dark ambient

As some readers of this page might have experienced, I just recently happened to mostly be into netlabel music, for a bunch of different reasons, including the inability of most of nowadays “music marketing” structures to really come up with interesting new acts and styles – which, then again, is not all too surprising in a musical world in which even “alternative”, “post rock” or “indie” mostly seem just genre descriptions rather than outlines or definitions of something new, interesting, inspired.

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music to code to, #2: Blame and sounds of water

Depending upon the very mood, I am into different kinds of music throughout my (working) days, and for quite a while, all kinds of electronic stuff has been close to top my my list, including both a couple of more familiar names and stuff which might be considered pretty much “unknown” these days, for whichever reasons. Blame definitely belongs to the latter kind of artists on my list, a band/project I just discovered a couple of weeks ago and have been excessively listening to ever since. Based in Belgrad, Serbia, Blame so far has released two albums (“Water” and “Convergent Fields), both digitally available via the projects bandcamp.com page and (at least “Water”) as CD release as well.

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I don’t think there’s really much needed to write about either of the two albums: Somehow, Blame mastermind Boris Posavec manages to find his musical way somewhere amidst Covenant (especially the “Sequencer” album), Angels And Agony, at times later Dust Of Basement releases and maybe a couple of other musicians in between dark electro, “future pop”, with an emphasis on “future” not “pop”, and the kind of music they have been selling us as “ebm” in the early 2000s. Down that road, Blame is pretty good at finding the right balance – creating dark, futuristic “soundscapes” which are accessible yet inspired, intense and strong without being overly aggressive or harsh (which goes for both the music and – male and female – vocals), musically somewhere near the artists mentioned above yet not just mere copies or clones of anything in existence, original throughout both albums yet filled with smaller pieces of reoccurring sounds, melodies, rhythms to create a certain musical identity amidst a genre which, these days, doesn’t really suffer from a lack of new album releases at least in quantity. All this is topped by a very strong production, an overall audio quality at least on par with some of todays major releases in this field of music.

Overally, both of the Blame albums are strongly recommended and, as far as I am concerned, one of the most interesting discoveries in this field of music in the last years. And, given the albums are freely available, checking out this music is almost mandatory if your musical collection and/or musical interests span any of the bands or genres mentioned earlier. Of course, though, you are encouraged to eventually buy them through bandcamp.com or any of the other sites offering CDs or MP3s – supporting great artists is more than ever of importance in days in which it seems the market still is being flooded with large amounts of low quality releases each and every month.

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