Branch or Die

Jaimie Branch follows the path marked out on her first album, but adds new horizons to the picture. Her sophomore work is a fascinating collection of vivid and spontaneous reactions to the surrounding reality: whether encountered in the rehearsal room, in a concert situation, or on the geopolitical scene.

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Saxodrones

Two brilliant records that combine the saxophone and drone music: Lea Bertucci generates reverberating pieces by playing in a huge grain elevator, while Julius Gabriel uses added effects to create his narcotic musical visions.

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SOTE: sonic deconstructor

– I spent most of my life outside of Iran. This was never my choice, so I felt a sense of void or longing for my homeland. In my mid-twenties, I started listening to more and more traditional Iranian music, until I felt like it was time for me to come up with some sort of Iranian music in that electronic synthesis framework – says Iranian composer SOTE.

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Imaginary folks

Some refer to it, others prefer to distance themselves from it. In my opinion, Opla and Širom’s latest records sound like contemporary folk made in large cities and their peripheries. Fiery and delicate at the same time, it takes a winding slalom course leading back to tradition.

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Holiday compilations #1

Travel to 1980s Brazilian underground, Peruvian sound-art, French children’s music, Melbourne’s blossoming jazz scene and Wrocław’s futuristic electronica. This is the first in a new series where I describe the most interesting compilations I’ve come across.

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Paris goes “pop”

With the summer festival season almost drawing to a close, the faint of heart dreading the gloomier seasons of the year had better plan some happy distractions in advance. Check out the first autumn festival recommendation, the Paris Popfest.

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Gaye Su Akyol: musical counter-reality

– After the 1980 military coup – a very important and sad moment for Turkey – everything changed in a very bad way. After the coup, it was very uncool to accept basically everything associated with our culture. What was very cool was acting like a Westerner. So, I’m very happy that this is fading…

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Globaltica: listening not only music

How to distil the most original essence of tradition? How to find a contemporary language to speak? How important is it to use the stage as a platform to talk about feminism or the migration crisis? These and other things are what you can find out at Globaltica festival. Text & photos: Jakub Knera /…

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Still breathing monsters

Four artists representing four different musical worlds are breathing new life into organ music. Ellen Arkbro keeps developing new conceptual ideas for using this instrument, Maja Ratkje adds additional sounds to it, Sarah Mary Chadwick uses it as an accompaniment to her songs and Kali Malone creates long, meditative drones, putting the ideas of deep listening into practice.

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