Sunday, March 27, 2011

Music Library: Mushroom, Musicians of the National Dance Company of Cambodia, Muslimgauze

Mushroom - Analog Hi-Fi Surprise (1999), Foxy Music (2001), Glazed Popems (2004), Joint Happening (with Eddie Gale, 2007), and Naked, Stoned and Stabbed (2010).  Mushroom is a fine, fine band, mixing jazz, krautrock, electronica, post-rock, and Brit-folk into a heady instrumental stew. Analog Hi-Fi Surprise is the most krautrockish of these albums. Foxy Music has some more jazzy and jammy elements. Glazed Popems wavers between Pentangle-ish Brit-folk and lysergic freakouts. Joint Happening with Sun Ra and Cecil Taylor trumpeter Eddie Gale has an unmistakeable Miles-in-the-70s vibe. Naked sounds like Glazed Popems II up until the Byrdsy final track.  The song titles are often some of the best in the business.

Musicians of the National Dance Company of Cambodia - Homrong (1993).  Traditional Cambodian music is something I don't much like. Now I know this.

Muslimgauze - Salaam Alekum, Bastard (1995). Muslimgauze was the project of a British electronic artist named Bryn Jones.  The music itself is exactly what it seems like: mostly Middle Eastern-influenced electronica circa mid-90s.  There's a political element, too, which is mostly reflected in the song titles and outside context.  I know only a little about that and can't really comment on it other than to point out that Jones was very much pro-Palestine.


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