Category Archives: Avant Garde

THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE BETA BAND

The Life and Times Of The Beta Band. The Beta Band was formed in Edinburgh in 1996, and a year later, in July 1997 released their Champion Versions EP, which was the first of a trio of innovative EP’s the folktronica pioneers released. In March 1998 The Beta Band released their sophomore EP The Patty Patty Sound, with Los Amigos …

Continue reading

MAJA S.K. RATKJE-SULT

Maja S. K. Ratkje-Sult. Rune Grammofon. By the time Maja S. K. Ratkje graduated from the Norwegian Academy of Music in 2000, the twenty-seven year old had already won one of the most prestigious awards in Norwegian music, an Edvardprisen. This came in 1999, when Waves 11b won an Edvardprisen in the contemporary music minor …

Continue reading

DIETER MOEBIUS-THE POST CLUSTER YEARS

Dieter Moebius-The Post Cluster Years. Ten years after Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius formed Cluster in 1971, the first chapter in the Cluster story drew to a close 1981, after the release of their seventh studio album, Curiosum. Hans-Joachim Roedelius said: “Cluster had run its course. We decided to concentrate on other projects. There was …

Continue reading

MOTORPSYCHO-THE CRUCIBLE.

Motorpsycho-The Crucible. Label: Rune Grammofon and Stickman Records. Nowadays, not many bands stay together thirty years, but Motorpsycho who are one of Norway’s top bands have. They’re proof that longevity isn’t a thing of the past in the music business. Nor is releasing an album a year. That was common in the sixties and seventies, which for many people was …

Continue reading

ATOMIC-PET VARIATIONS.

Atomic-Pet Variations. Label: Odin Records. Release Date: ‘22nd’ March 2019. Eighteen years ago, Scandinavian supergroup Atomic was founded by Swedish trumpeter Magnus Broo and his fellow countryman and reed player Fredrik Ljungkvist who joined forces with Norwegian pianist Håvard Wiik, bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love. By then, each musician was a familiar face in their own country, but …

Continue reading

LONNIE LISTON SMITH AND THE COSMIC ECHOES-THEIR FINEST HOUR: THE FLYING DUTCHMAN YEARS.

Lonnie Liston Smith and The Cosmic Echoes-Their Finest Hour: The Flying Dutchman Years. Innovative, influential and way ahead of the musical curve, describes the music of Lonnie Liston Smith, and specially the music he recorded with The Cosmic Echoes at Bob Thiele’s Flying Dutchman Productions. It was home to some of the most innovative jazz musicians …

Continue reading

HEDVIG MOLLESTAD TRIO-SMELLS FUNNY.

Hedvig Mollestad Trio-Smells Funny. Label: Rune Grammofon. Ever since the Hedvig Mollestad Trio was founded in 2009, this inimitable group has been pushing musical boundaries and creating inventive and innovative genre-melting music. That is the case on their latest album Smells Funny, which was released by Rune Grammofon. It’s the sixth album since the Hedvig …

Continue reading

LINDA PERHACS: THE NEWLY CROWNED QUEEN OF PSYCHEDELIC FOLK.

Linda Perhacs-The Newly Crowned Queen Of Psychedelic Folk. The Linda Perhacs story is a case of what might have been, for the seventy-four year singer who nowadays, is regarded as the true Queen of psychedelic folk. Linda Perhacs career began in 1970, when she released her debut album Parallelograms on Kapp Records. Sadly, Parallelograms which nowadays, is regarded as a psychedelic folk …

Continue reading

HARMONIA-A SUPERGROUP AND “THE MOST IMPORTANT BAND IN THE WORLD.”

Harmonia-A Supergroup and “The Most Important Band In The World.” Throughout musical history, innovative music has often failed to find an audience upon its release. It’s only much later, that the music’s importance and innovation is recognised. Musical history is littered with examples. This includes the group that Brian Eno once called : “the most important band in the world,” Harmonia. Despite such high praise, Harmonia’s …

Continue reading

FOUR DECADES OF MAKING MUSIC: THE CLUSTER STORY.

Four Decades Of Making Music: The Cluster Story. The Cluster story began in the Zodiak Free Arts Lab in West Berlin  when Hans-Joachim Roedelius first met Dieter Moebius. Little did they know that they were about to embark upon a musical journey that would last five decades.  During that period, Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius …

Continue reading

THE MUSIC OF MICHAEL ROTHER KOMISCHE PIONEER.

The Music Of Michael Rother Kosmische Pioneer. During the early seventies, the German music scene was thriving, and  was one of the most vibrant in Europe. Some of the most influential and innovative music was being recorded and released by German bands. This included the holy trinity of Can, Kraftwerk and Neu!. Along with Amon Düül II, Ashra, …

Continue reading

THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MUSICAL MAVERICK HOLGER CZUKAY.

The Life and Times Of Musical Maverick Holger Czukay. Although the word innovator is one of the most overused words in the English language nowadays, it perfectly describes  Holger Czukay who cofounded Can in 1968. This was the start of a near fifty year career where Holger Czukay continued to make groundbreaking music, and push musical boundaries to their limits, and sometimes way …

Continue reading

DIETER MOEBIUS-LIFE AFTER CLUSTER: THE SOLO YEARS.

Dieter Moebius-Life After Cluster: The Solo Years. Ten years after Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius formed Cluster in 1971, the first chapter in the Cluster story drew to a close 1981, after the release of their seventh studio album, Curiosum. Hans-Joachim Roedelius said: “Cluster had run its course. We decided to concentrate on other projects. …

Continue reading

CYMBELINE-SWEDEN’S LOST GROUP.

Cymbeline-Sweden’s Lost Group. Nowadays, Norway and Sweden both have vibrant and thriving music scenes, where pioneering musicians record and release some of the most ambitious, important and innovative music that is currently being released in Europe. This is nothing new, and both countries have a long and illustrious musical history stretching back to the early …

Continue reading

THE LIFE AND TIMES OF CAN.

The Life and Times Of Can. Having released eleven albums in eleven years, Can called time on their career in 1979. By then, Can were rightly regarded by critics as one of the most important, influential and innovative bands of the Krautrock era. However, like many of the Krautrock bands, Can hadn’t enjoyed the commercial …

Continue reading

THE INIMITABLE SUN RA, INNOVATOR AND MUSICAL PIONEER.

The Inimitable Sun Ra, Innovator and Musical Pioneer. Nowadays, music journalists are guilty of using the words innovator and musical pioneer all too freely, but that is the perfect description of the inimitable Sun Ra. He’s now regarded as one of the true pioneers of free jazz and a truly innovative and influential musician who pushed musical …

Continue reading

NAT BIRCHALL-COSMIC LANGUAGE-VINYL

Nat Birchall-Cosmic Language-Vinyl. Label: Jazzman Records.  Manchester-based jazz saxophonist Nat Birchall has come a long way since releasing his debut album The Sixth Sense in January 1999, and nowadays, is regarded as one of the leading lights of the vibrant British jazz scene. Nat Birchall is also one of the most talented and inventive British …

Continue reading

A NEW LIFE VOLUME II-VINYL.

A New Life Volume II-Vinyl. Label: Jazzman Records Three years ago in 2015, Jazzman Records released A New Life, their critically acclaimed compilation of British jazz. This is no ordinary jazz compilation though. Instead, A New Life featured tracks from private pressings and hidden gems released by independent labels. So successful was A New Life …

Continue reading

MOGWAI-THE STORY SO FAR.

Mogwai-The Story So Far. The Mogwai story which began in 1991, when Stuart Braithwaite and Dominic Aitchison met in Scotland’s musical capital, Glasgow. Four years later, they met drummer Martin Bulloch and formed Mogwai, which film buffs will remember, is a character from the movie Gremlins. Mogwai was always meant as a temporary name, until they …

Continue reading

THE BETA BAND-HEROES TO ZEROES.

The Beta Band-Heroes To Zeros. Label: Because Music. The Beta Band was formed in Edinburgh in 1996, and a year later, in July 1997 released their Champion Versions EP, which was the first of a trio of innovative EP’s the folktronica pioneers released. In March 1998 The Beta Band released their sophomore EP The Patty Patty Sound, with Los …

Continue reading