Music at Elsewhere

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Carla Dal Forno: Look Up Sharp (Kallista/digital outlets)

17 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

Melbourne-born and Berlin-based Carla Dal Forno is very much the independent artist we expect to hear from in the 21stcentury: drawing from tasting notes of pop history (depressive 4AD artists, Eno, This Mortal Coil, gloomy pop but not the full Goth) and wrapping her emotionally distant speak-sing vocals into them with music which is stately and often slow (which flags that she's A Serious... > Read more

I'm Conscious

Ori Barel: Centrifugal Force for Player Piano (Albany/digital outlets)

16 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

We expect by now few people come to Elsewhere expecting the always-familiar, so this album by American composer Ori Barel for player piano is one for those prepared for something elsewhere. Inspired by robotic art, the speed of technology and the musical reach from concert hall to free jazz, Barel has created “programmes” for the player piano using algorithms which created... > Read more

Centrifugal Force Part 2

Bert Jansch: Avocet 40th Anniversary Edition (Earth/Southbound)

15 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

The late Scottish singer/guitarist and songwriter Bert Jansch who co-founded the influential Pentangle and died in 2011, left a vast legacy of albums of which many are still coming to terms with. Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page -- as a young man then smitted by American blues guitarists -- has said of Jansch's self-titled debut album of '65, "When I first heard that album I couldn't believe... > Read more


Hayden Wood: Sixty Years On (Frenzy)

15 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

Despite the considerable collective musical knowledge at the table not one of us could place Hayden Wood, the subject of this new archive compilation by Grant Gillanders. Fortunately, as he always does on his Frenzy releases, Gillanders provides considerable information in the sleeve of this 26-song collection subtitled “the NEMS, Spin, Parlophone, Jam and Cherokee Recordings 1966... > Read more

Cannons Plain

Dead Little Penny: Urge Surfing (digital outlets)

13 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

This Auckland-based three-piece of Hayley Smith, Simon Buxton and Sean Martin-Buss deliver up a frequently exciting mix of power pop-cum-shoegaze songs which are as melodic as they assertive. Smith has a voice which can sit effortlessly as a tuneful dream-pop element in songs like the guitar fuzz of U 4 Me and the drone of the thrilling surging intensity of Out of Body Experience, but also... > Read more

Lankum: The Livelong Day (Rough Trade/Rhythmethod)

11 Nov 2019  |  2 min read  |  1

Many decades ago I wrote an essay for a glossy monthly about The Joy of Music. It was a celebration of how music of all persuasions can inform and enrich your life. I did however say that I could barely abide earnest folk music and reserved a special place in Hell for most Irish music which I found to be either irredeemably glum or mindlessly cheerful. Well, time wounds all heels as... > Read more

The Talkies: Girl Band (Rough Trade/Rhythmethod)

8 Nov 2019  |  <1 min read

Just as you might think when you see a pensionable age person with a brand new Smiley face tattoo, so you might look at the photos of the thirtysomethings on this album cover and after enduring their noise say something like, “Act your age” or “Are you serious?” This Irish quartet open their second album with the sound of singer Dara Kiely apparently breathing... > Read more

ONE WE MISSED: Oddarrang: Hypermetros (Edition/digital outlets)

6 Nov 2019  |  <1 min read

Here on their fifth album, this Finnish quintet with cello and trombone alongside drums, bass, acoustic guitar and synths embark on a measured instrumental journey between slo-mo jazz, atmospheric ambient music and rock with chamber music tendencies. Very Nordic we might say, and certainly the opening passages of a piece like Ohlop could seem tailored to fit the... > Read more

Olivia Foa'i: Candid (digital outlets)

4 Nov 2019  |  <1 min read

Olivia Foa'i is just one of the many talents in the Foa'i family. Their long-running and globally-recognised band Te Vaka, in which Olivia sings and dances, is helmed by her Grammy-nominated father Opetaia and appeared on the Disney soundtrack for Moana. In 2017 he received the “International Achievement Award” in the New Zealand Music Awards. Here Olivia steps forward with... > Read more

Jane Weaver: Fenella (Fire/digital outlets)

2 Nov 2019  |  <1 min read

British composer Jane Weaver has most of us at a disadvantage here with this reimagining of the soundtrack to a Hungarian fantasy film Feherlofia/Son of the White Mare most of us probably haven't seen. It has been described as a “cult”, but classic, piece of animation. So this album is very much a case of radio without pictures. That said, if you've followed Weaver's... > Read more

Truly Seduced

Richie Setford: Aimless Survivor (digital outlets)

1 Nov 2019  |  1 min read

Berlin-based these past five years and previously using the moniker Bannerman which he carried across a number of albums, extpat Richie Setford steps out again under his own name (after his earlier EP Hardly There) with this further installment of his downbeat, ennui-affected songs captured in this collection's title and the slow, beautifully realised title track. Setford however has a... > Read more

Neil Young: Colorado (Warners/digital outlets)

27 Oct 2019  |  1 min read  |  1

Maybe it's time to call “time” on the much vaunted greatness of Neil Young? Most of his better albums among the very many released this century – almost 30 in 19 years – have been pulled from his archives. And among the new recordings he has largely revisited the familiar (acoustic Neil, slightly country Neil) alongside eccentric non-events like A Letter Home, leaden... > Read more

Secret Knives: Snuff (A Low Hum/digital outlets)

26 Oct 2019  |  <1 min read

These 10 songs sitting at the midpoint of brittle electronica, indie guitar rock and experimental pop by Wellington's Secret Knives (Ash Smith) fairly spring attention from the opener Spinning Top which arrives over a drone and a vocal with an understated melody, then grows into vigorous drums, stuttering beats and voice before swelling guitars evoke a punchy horn section. It's one... > Read more

Floating Points: Crush (Ninja Tune/Border, digital outlets)

25 Oct 2019  |  1 min read

With its ambient wash, electronic sounds which pan across the aural spectrum, quizzical effects layered among the beats and throbbing, sometimes minimalist-like repetitions and melodies, this new outing by Britain's Sam Shepherd aka Floating Points is the perfect headphone album. There is almost a surfeit of musical and rhythmic ideas across these 12 instrumental pieces which can... > Read more

Jenny Hval: The Practice of Love (Sacred Bones/digital outlets)

21 Oct 2019  |  1 min read

Norwegian multi-discipline artist (novelist, songwriter, sonic experimenter, collaborator) Jenny Hval is – like Laurie Anderson – someone who melds the spoken and sung word with unusual sonic settings and sometimes a kind of emotionally cool distance or a sensual whisper. She is probably so far out of most people's orbit that it serves little purpose... > Read more

Miriam Clancy: Astronomy (digital outlets)

21 Oct 2019  |  2 min read

Miriam Clancy has been out of New Zealand for more than five years, and it has been a decade since her last album Magnetic which included the extraordinary song Ghost Town. That was a penetrating view of life from the inside of one of those no-hope suburbs (“around here you've got a permanent cold, the neighbour's tinny put your life on hold”)and should have... > Read more

ONE WE MISSED: Wallis Bird: Woman (AntiFragile/digital outlets)

21 Oct 2019  |  <1 min read

We didn't so much miss Irish singer-songwriter Wallis Bird as get to her too early, back in March when she was touring in New Zealand and she answered some questions for us. At that time however this album – her sixth studio outing – was six months off. Bird is a serious artist who don't flinch from the big issues confronting these troubling times: the opener As... > Read more

Matthew Bannister: Rubber Solo (Powertool Records)

21 Oct 2019  |  2 min read

Now this is a pleasant and welcome return by Matthew Bannister (Sneaky Feelings, Dribbling Darts of Love, Changing Same and more). Six years ago under the name One Man Bannister he revisited and reconstructed the Beatles' Revolver album in its entirety in what might have been seen as foolhardy and overly ambitious. But it worked because although he was reverential to the songs, that... > Read more

Run for Your Life

Toiling Midgets: Sea of Tranquility (Green Monkey/digital outlets)

14 Oct 2019  |  1 min read

It has been about 15 years since we sat on the back deck of the Seattle home of musician Jeff Kelly and his artist wife Susanne. But we've never forgotten their hospitality . . . and the regular albums by Kelly and/or his band Green Pajamas (new or reissues) from the local label Green Monkey have just kept arriving. Green Monkey is the project of Tom Dyer and we are... > Read more

Beth Hart: War in My Mind (Provogue/digital outlets)

12 Oct 2019  |  1 min read

 Let it be said clearly: the 2015 Powerstation concert by American soul-blues singer Beth Hart was one of the most enjoyable, gripping, cathartic, vocally impressive and sometimes very funny and heartfelt shows that Elsewhere has seen in the past five years. Hart – coming off the back of her exceptional and personal Better Than Home album – sang with the raw... > Read more