Thursday 28 April 2016

Various Artists - Opus '72 -1972- (LP, Radio Nederland), Netherlands

After Opus '70 and Opus '71 that I posted on the blog, here is Opus '72 introducing modern composers and compositions from the Netherlands in 1972. The Opus series were distributed to foreign radio stations to promote Dutch contemporary composed music. The series are essential for exploring Dutch avant-garde and contemporary composed classical music of the previous century.

The first programme consists of a long piece by Rob du Bois inspired by Romanian composer Alexander Hrisanide . The piece requires a pianist not only to play the piano but also an electronic organ, a toy-piano and a large tom-tom. It's an interesting musical piece in which strange piano sounds are the centre.

The second programme consists of pieces by Ton de Leeuw (which I posted before) and Tristan Keuris. De Leeuw's piece is inspired by Indian music and thought in which a flute, played by Abbie de Quant, plays the main role. De Leeuw who studied ethnomusicology was the teacher of Tristan Keuris. Keuris' piece is created for alto-saxophone and an intuitively responding orchestra.

Get it HERE

Tuesday 19 April 2016

Various Artists - Une Autre Façon d'écouter la Musique -1986- (Tape, Igloo), Belgium

This is a promotional compilation tape of the Belgian label Igloo. Igloo was founded in 1978 by
Daniel Sotiaux and initially focused on contemporary composed, strange electronic and avant-garde music until the mid-eighties when it changed its profile to contemporary jazz music.

This cassette from 1986 is also pretty much jazz oriented and showcases a variety of bands and releases on the Igloo label. I'm quite sure almost all of these albums are to be found already, but let's say we can still use this compilation as a guide through the releases on Igloo of the mid-eighties. I wasn't too familiar with the label to be honest. Although some tracks on this compilation are pretty corny, it still shows the impro and jazz scene that was active in Belgium and Brussels in the Eighties. Igloo as a label is comparable to other Belgian labels like Disques du Crépuscule or Crammed Discs that always moved in-between impro, jazz, classical and RIO stuff.

This compilation shows the more safe side of a Belgian scene that had more adventurous bands like Aksak Maboul or Univers Zero operating in the same period. But there are some highlights on this compilation like Julverne and Real Live Orchestra. The coolest part of the compilation is that there are impro-jazz interludes with a girl telling us in English with a French accent which song we've just heard. It gives it a nice Bruxelles eighties chicness which is cool.

Get it HERE