Tuesday, December 10, 2013

SONIC PLAYGROUND RELEASES

Sonic Playground is a label from Athens, Greek. It's not a record label in the conventional sense, because it doesn't put out any physical releases. Sonic Playground delivers music in the form of files. They can all be downloaded on their website (click here). I'm probably far behind the times, but I haven't heart of something like this before. Sonic Playground releases cover a wide range of different styles. I've decided to review three of them, but I recommed you to also check out their other stuff.

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BARBARA'S STRAIGHT SON - TING-A-LING MOTHERFUCKER FILE (Sonic Playground)
Barbara’s Straight Son is a four-piece from Athens, Greece. ’Ting-a-ling motherfucker’’ and ‘’After the excrement hit the air conditioning’’ will both also appear on their forthcoming album. Their music sounds like it's coming from another far away galaxy. It's filled with plenty of futuristic harmonies, that recall the music of Cluster, Devo, Edward Artemiev and sounds from old video games. Both songs are instrumentals showing a brilliant musical and rhythmiyal interaction with many changes and new ideas floating through. They try on funk, dub, minimal-wave, pop, punk and lounge, full of keyboard instrument space junk, driving bass lines  and groovy drum-beats. This is some really amazing outsider art music. (Listen to it here)

DAS DING - TRIFFID FARM/ WE CAN REBUILD HIM FILE (Sonic Playground)
Das Ding is moniker of Dutch elctro pioneer Danny Bosten. He was active in the 80s and he released some tapes back than, but they received only little attention. In 2009 the Minimal Wave label from New York has put songs from his tapes on a LP. The song "H.S.T.A." has also been included on the brilliant "The Minimal Wave Tapes Volume 2" compilation. Das Ding are probably today more popular than during the time they existed. Both songs included here show, that Danny Bosten has been ahead of his time. "Triffid Farm" and "We can rebuild him" are defined by plenty of variations and changes. Equipped with synthesizers and drum machine he crafts melodic, cold electronic rhythms with a highly addictive and dancable groove. The result is a modern style of electronic music, that's both warm and pounding. (Listen to it here)

THE HEAVNS - GRAVITAS / EXILE ELIXER FILE (Sonic Playground)
Hailing from Los Angeles, California this is The Heavns thrid release after one EP and one album. On the surface these two tunes sound like a 21st century version of 1980s and 90s indie-rock simular to Dinosaur Jr. and Superchunk. They find a perfect balance between thrashing guitars, a heartfeld groove and plenty of great melodies. The distinctive, harmonizing guitar leads are more influenced by the sound of 60s psych-pop. The pace is rather slow, the production is clean and modern, but with the help of the upward push of the voice and the well done guitar work it's all delivered with intensity. "Gravitas" is the most catchy and memorable track. "Exile Elixer" is defined by a more chilled and relaxed sound driven by sugar-sweet background vocals. (Listen to it here)