Monthly playlist-January 2019

Posted: 7th February 2019 by blaue-rosen in Music News,press releases
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“An active line on a walk, moving freely, without goal. A walk for a walk’s sake…” (Paul Klee)

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Some might say that the first albums to be released every year, set the tone for the whole year so if our favourite 22 albums of January are any indication of that, then we are to brace ourselves for a very interesting year ahead!

logo playlistIf the soundtrack of this month was an image, then it would be a very dark one with highlights that sharply divide the surface, creating an effect similar to that of a thunderous sky. The albums that form this playlist have sometimes strong and other times softer influences and they occupy a sonic space that has black metal, post rock, darkwave, punk, industrial, post punk, deathrock and experimental elements. This playlist turned out to be focused on self released albums as these were the ones that had the strongest impact on us this time.

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Howard Rickard and The Pale Riders or else a modern day story of ‘outlaws’ and ‘outcasts’

…And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts And I looked, and behold a pale horse And his name that sat on him was death, and hell followed with him…

When Willie Nelson released the album ‘Wanted!The Outlaws’with a brilliant cover which replicated the aesthetics of bounty hunters’ posters, he did it to make a comment about the position of outlaw country music in contrast to the more traditional Nashville sound. Similarly, when Johnny Cash was singing ‘Folsom Prison Blues‘ on his debut album, he was partly referring to his own life and the time he had spent in prison. One would think that these people have always been more than great songwriters with great public appeal. They were always the protagonists in their own stories, they made music out of their experiences, they have performed it with all the contextual gravity that a lived experience encompasses and they have lead lives that inadvertently inspired their songwriting. Because of that, their music has been loved so much and in such a profound way than the music of others.  (more…)

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These are our favourite releases of 2018! Click on the image to interact with the data!

soundtrack of 2018

(Click on the image to interact with the links)

The music world might have become even ‘poorer’ as a result of the passing away of Mark E.Smith in 2018, but I don’t think that anyone who loves the independent music scene, can deny the fact that 2018 has been a very generous year in terms of album releases and gigs. We music stats 2018got to listen to great albums and we had the chance to enjoy bands that celebrated important anniversaries in their career, perform live. Within 2018 we enjoyed the release of impressive debut albums by new bands, proving that there is always space for more creativity within genres that might seem ‘saturated’ from many aspects! 2018 was the year when the cassette format became even more popular so that we might soon have to start talking about a serious comeback and when the independent music scene and its audience, continued to grow even further.

We cannot forget the live score that Godspeed You!Black Emperor provided to the contemporary dance performance of ‘Animals of Distinction’ at The Barbican. The extracts from Jenny Holzer’s texts that were included in this performance lead us to the Tanks at TATE Modern where we enjoyed more installations by this multifarious artist. During this visit, we also got to know of the work of Aldo Tambellini and his fascination with black colour. We misread the word ‘expressive’ for ‘oppressive’ in the brief text that accompanied one of the installations and for days we were puzzled by the idea of the ‘oppressive qualities of black colour’.It was several months after this visit, when the latest album of Current 93 entitled ‘The Light Is Leaving Us All’ was released, that these circular ‘mandalas’ that Tambellini has done, gained richer meaning. At the beginning of the year, we had the surreal experience of listening to dark ambient music compositions Gigs 2018while they were animating the faҫades of some classic buildings at Regent Street during Lumiere 2018. Finally, during 2018 some gigs once again demonstrated the infinite limitations of all ‘recorded’ media (i.e. visual, audio, writing) to capture the energy and impact of a performance  . How else can we explain the fact that no medium was able to transfer the intensity of the performance of Blixa Bargeld with Teho Teardo at the closing of the 27th WGT in Leipzig, the performance of Current 93 at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire especially during ‘Sleep Has His House’, the magic that ATARAXIA have spread all around the Schauspielhaus, the energy of Diorama and Siglo XX at Felsenkeller at WGT, and the awe that Peter Murphy has once again filled us with, during an unforgettable gig at O2 Academy Brixton, celebrating the 40th anniversary of Bauhaus! 2018 was the year when we got to see The Dresden Dolls perform live in London after 12 years and 2019 will be the year when we will celebrate the career of Dead Can Dance!

During 2018 we have listened to 824 releases  and we picked the favourite of our favourite ones, 74 in total, that make up the soundtrack of the year! All of these albums were present in the 12 monthly playlists of the year which you can access from the following links:

Monthly playlist December 2018
Monthly playlist November 2018
Monthly playlist October 2018
Monthly playlist September 2018
Monthly playlist August 2018
Monthly playlist July 2018
Monthly playlist June 2018
Monthly playlist May 2018
Monthly playlist April 2018
Monthly playlist March 2018
Monthly playlist February 2018
Monthly playlist January 2018

Let’s all have a great 2019!

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“Cruelty has a Human Heart
And Jealousy a Human Face
Terror the Human Form Divine
And Secrecy the Human Dress
(William Blake: poem ‘A Divine Image’)”

monthly playlist logo2018 concludes its music journey with amazing gigs that we will keep in our minds throughout the rest of the year. The album releases of December have somehow helped to make the transition to the next year smoother. Our monthly playlist makes a journey from ethereal folk to post punk and metal. It includes impressive debut albums and the new album by the great ‘magician’ of piano, Lubomyr Melnyk.

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Monthly Playlist-November 2018

Posted: 10th December 2018 by blaue-rosen in Music News,press releases
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Album:The Witch
Label: Fiction Records
Arrow
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“…the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of his own creation “― Auguste Rodin

monthly playlist logoAs this year is approaching its end, the new music releases are perceived as if they somehow close an imaginary sonic circle that started 11 months ago. The soundtrack of the previous month traces a path that begins in a space filled with techno, industrial and minimal electronic rhythms, reveals the various ‘faces’ of punk and dark pop and ends by finding the shared emotions between trip hop and 60s inspired folk rock. There are plenty of debut releases within this month’s soundtrack, two of which are the result of creative collaborations between kindred musical spirits.

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September 2018-December 2018: A new season of gigs Part 2

logo gigs2018 has been (and still is) a very generous year on what concerns the gigs that have been organised in London and it seems that next year will be similar, but we will talk about this in a few weeks’ time. For the moment let’s go through the reasons that will make us enjoy the end of this year and of another season.

Upcoming GIGS

The Dresden Dolls London gig poster 2018The Dresden Dolls live at The Troxy on 30,31 October 2018: The Dresden Dolls made a huge impact on the audience (small at first, huge in the years that followed) when they released their 4 studio albums from 2003-2008. It was the sheer energy of Amanda and Brian on and off stage, the cabaret aesthetics, the ‘in-your-face’ attitude, the dare of the lyrics, the amazing lyricism on the piano and the voice, that captured our hearts from the very beginning.The band hosted design competitions for the artwork of their albums in which many fans participated without a second thought, the dedication of the fans that increased exponentially after each release was unprecedented. In other words, this was a uniquely different, beautiful underground band with a punk attitude and unparalleled musical magnetism. For some of us, The Dresden Dolls was one of the best bands that has ever existed. Many of us had not had the chance to see this band perform before they stopped collaborating for a while and before they stopped releasing new albums. Three years ago, on Record Store Day, a one-off show of The Dresden Dolls at Rough Trade in Brooklyn was announced and it made our hearts beat faster, as some of us considered travelling there to attend this performance. The band was kind and graceful enough to live stream the entire gig which we then reviewed.

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Monthly playlist-October 2018

Posted: 8th November 2018 by blaue-rosen in Music News,press releases
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“Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.”― Anne Frank

The soundtrack of the previous month was exceptionally dark, both conceptually and in its atmosphere. The albums that we consider to be our favourite among the 68 releases that we listened to throughout the month, make a journey from melancholic neoclassical towards obscure extreme electronics. All of these releases put together, have created an incredibly hard-to-navigate, dark space, with impressive sonic textures and a subtle (and other times quite harsh) melancholy.

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Monthly Playlist-September 2018

Posted: 9th October 2018 by blaue-rosen in Music News,press releases
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Alice could not help her lips curling up into a smile as she began: “Do you know, I always thought Unicorns were fabulous monsters, too! I never saw one alive before!”
“Well, now that we have seen each other,” said the Unicorn, “if you’ll believe in me, I’ll believe in you. Is that a bargain?
(extract: ‘Alice In Wonderland’ Lewis Carroll)

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Monthly playlist-August 2018

Posted: 12th September 2018 by blaue-rosen in Music News,press releases
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I took punk to be the detonation of some slow-fused projectile buried deep in society’s flank a decade earlier, and I took it to be, somehow, a sign.” (William Gibson)

monthly_playlist_logoAugust was a month whose soundtrack had punk at its core and experimentation as its drive. There were new releases from favourite, well established musicians, welcomed stylistic changes in the music of others and plenty of debut albums that proved the originality of young musicians in the creative treatment of their influences.

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September 2018-December 2018: A new season of gigs/albums’ releases

We did not have to worry about the possibility of a war this summer but things continue to be nerve wracking worldwide. Artists are concerned about the impact of Brexit on their plans to visit the UK in the future and promoters seem to have scheduled as many gigs as possible before things become seriously uncertain, early next year.

Blaue Rosen, will be covering as many of these as possible having as our only drive, our desire to experience music in our own way, taking into account the artists’ intentions and exploring new sonic horizons. These are the highlights of the next few months, so far.

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