Fairmont - Coloured in Memory
This easy-listening music takes me back to the shoegazing days of the late 80's and early 90's when I was into the likes of My Bloody Valentine and Slowdive, although Fairmont certainly can't be described as baggy. The main difference between the two camps is that Fairmont shouldn't be thought of as an alternative to rock music but instead an alternative to dance music.
In today's music world of mash-ups the boundaries are forever stretching and the music styles are happily merging; musicians always striving for that new sound or perspective. And Fairmont manage to combine their guitars and electronic music with great success. And things never sound forced or uneasy. It's mellow, easy-listening and much recommended.
Highlights include Fade And Saturate, Mobula and I Need Medicine. Sound a bit like Boards of Canada in places.
12 listens | 9/10
Burial - Untrue
Ghostly, atmospheric album with sweetly manipulated vocals and beautiful tunes but it's also dark and mysterious... what a trip! Think dubstep, two-step, garage, breakbeat, R&B, grime and top-notch melody and you're almost there. The 50 minutes plays out like the soundtrack to the most memorable film you'll ever hear, with each track telling it's own story as the scenes change. Like the recently reviewed Radiohead album, it's very difficult to pick a highlight because the quality is so high and consistent but if I was pushed I'd say Archangel is a belter.
15 listens | 10/10
Various - Soma Compilation 2007
The annual round-up from Glasgow-based record label Soma never fails. It's a very listenable selection of tracks from some of the records they've released throughout the year. Every track is a highlight so it's definitely worth checking out. I saw it as a mid-price CD in FOPP last week but you can download it directly from the Soma shop.
TIP: a band to watch out for are Let's Go Outside.
10+ listens | 10/10
Resident Advisor Podcasts
I've been listening to as many of these podcasts as I humanly can without completely sickening myself with music overload (yes, I'm beginning to believe it might be possible to listen to too much music) and thankfully a few of the better quality mixes are beginning to make their way through the enormous pile to the top.
Partly reflecting RA's top podcasts of the year, I have to agree in saying the Joris Voorn mix is excellent. So too are the Dixon and Efdemin contributions. (I picked up the Efdemin album as a result). I also highly rate the RA podcasts by M.A.N.D.Y., Brendon Moeller and Mike Vamp.
Other stuff I can't stop listening to
It's was a very slow grower this one but I'm actually really appreciating the Fabric mix from Ricardo Villalobos. I listened to it a couple of times after it was released but just couldn't get into it. I'll admit I was slightly put-off that the Chilean-German DJ had decided to compose his 'mix' CD with original compositions of his own; this kinda went against the grain of previous releases in the series; but I thankfully persevered. The stripped-down music is certainly more challenging but I'm finding it the perfect music to chill-out to.
Still loving Mexico Can Wait by Roland Klinkenberg too.