Heinz Holliger's Beiseit / Alb-Chehr was the first ECM-released recording I had ever heard and I still spin it quite often. In this recording, Holliger tracks are interwoven with tracks by Romanian composer György Kurtág, many of which are sung by a soprano singer. The tone of Holliger's oboe is unmistakable and the atmosphere here is so fragile and wintry, that it makes you just need to lie down and listen to this without doing anything. Superb. 2019 cd on ECM.
Crazy collaboration between MC Dalek and Mike Mare of Dalek, Mats Gustafsson and Fire!'s drummer Andreas Werllin and Hans-Joachim Irmler of Faust, giving an expanded sense in the 2000s collaborations between Faust and Dalek. This is dirgy and super-dark and combines the best of Dalek's industrial/ambient hip hop, Faust's motorik psychedelia and the free jazz madness of Fire! and Gustafsson's sax torture. 2018 cd on RareNoise Records.
This morning I was looking in Discogs for Arvo Part's early 1960s USSR recordings, since I have got some good unexpected money. Unfortunately the prices were too high for me to afford, but I laughed because Discogs lists 666 Arvo Part releases. And think that Arvo is the closest I get to Christianitty during Christmas and Easter, since I usually play chants of his to my students.
At my dear friend Samuel's request, here's a - hopefully - comprehensive discography of one the greatest hip hop groups of all time, Dälek, plus some related projects involving MC Dälek - Will Brooks. I have already expressed my love for the dense industrial and experimental rap innovations Dälek have offered, so I won't really go into great detail, and without further ado, here we go.
On this second installation they start with Bach's "Fugue In B Minor BWV 869," continue with Alfred Schnittke's unsettling "String Quartet No. 3" and finish with Beethoven's lengthy " String Quartet No. 13 In B-flat Major." Excellent again. 2019 cd on ECM.
Some music for the Xmas dinner. I find the concept of Danish String Quartet's Prism albums very interesting, as they start and finish them with tracks by Beethoven and Bach which envelope another, more modern composer. In this first installation, they set off with Bach's "Fugue in E-Flat Major" from The Well-Tempered Clavier and continue with Shostakovich's "String Quarter No.15 in E-Flat Minor," which is super-dark and droney (written juts a year before his death), with the violins occassionally sounding as if they had been played with an e-bow. They round the recording off on a much more optimistic tone with Beethoven's "String Quartet No. 12 In E-flat Major." DSQ is a talented group with great dialogue between the instruments and I think they are one of the most forward-looking classical music groups at the moment. 2018 cd on ECM.