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Luke Cissell Creates Dreamy, Electronic Soundscapes on the Eclectic 'Nightside'

Nightside, the new album from composer and multi-instrumentalist Luke Cissell, is largely synthetic and electronic but contains a great deal of warmth and melody.

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Music

Wetware Ratchet Up the Intensity to a Nightmarish Degree on 'Flail'

Brooklyn's Wetware have created a wild collection of industrial noise on Flail that sounds more like an intense fever dream than anything else.

Music

Avant-Rockers Aksak Maboul Continue to Innovate in the 21st Century

Belgian avant-rockers Aksak Maboul bring their stylized shapeshifting to the 21st century with the new album Figures.

Music

Flying Lotus Goes Purely Instrumental on New Version of 'Flamagra'

On the instrumental version of last year's Flamagra, Flying Lotus makes conspicuous variety feel coherent and ordered.

Music

Taiwan's Mong Tong Concoct a Darkly Psychedelic 'Mystery'

Experimental Taiwanese group Mong Tong draw on mysticism and arcade games for their darkly psychedelic debut album Mystery.

Music

A Foggy Disorientation Pervades the Intoxicating Music of Drab City

Drab City combine sultry vocals, superlative songwriting, vibraphone chords, twangy guitar, and shadowy atmospherics to conjure an intense trip-hop fever dream on Good Songs for Bad People.

Music

Photay's New Electronic LP 'Waking Hours' Is About Taking Time Out

Electronic music of the sort that Photay creates doesn't typically have much to say lyrically, but on Waking Hours, Photay has a message, and he gives the human voice much more space than ever before.

Music

TALsounds Offers Controlled Bliss on ​'Acquiesce'

TALsounds' Acquiesce reminds us that it's important to notice how brief moments of confidence or peace can unfurl in real-time, forming solid ground for us to walk forward.

Music

Noveller's 'Arrow' Creates Mini-Symphonies for Guitar and Effects

Experimental guitarist, Noveller's Arrow suggests discoveries, open spaces, the sense of a calm certainty re-occurring over repeated listens.

Music

Inventions' 'Continuous Portrait' Blurs the Grandiose and the Intimate

Explosions in the Sky and Eluvium side project, Inventions are best when they are navigating the distinction between modes in real-time on Continuous Portrait.

Music

Elysia Crampton Creates an Unsettlingly Immersive Experience with ​'Ocorara 2010'

On Ocorara 2010, producer Elysia Crampton blends deeply meditative drones with "misreadings" of Latinx poets such as Jaime Saenz and Juan Roman Jimenez

Music

David Grubbs and Taku Unami Collaborate on the Downright Riveting 'Comet Meta'

Comet Meta is a brilliant record full of compositions and moments worthy of their own accord, but what's really enticing is that it's not only by David Grubbs but of him. It's perhaps the most emotive, dream-like, and accomplished piece of Grubbsian experimental post-rock.

Music

Inventions Conjure Mystery and Hope with the Intensely Creative 'Continuous Portrait'

Instrumental duo Matthew Robert Cooper (Eluvium) and Mark T. Smith (Explosions in the Sky) release their first album in five years as Inventions. Continuous Portrait is both sonically thrilling and oddly soothing.

Music

Okkyung Lee Goes From Classical to Noise on the Stellar 'Yeo-Neun'

Cellist Okkyung Lee walks a fine line between classical and noise on the splendid, minimalist excursion Yeo-Neun.

Music

Christine Ott Brings the Ondes Martenot to New Heights with the Mesmerizing 'Chimères'

France's Christine Ott, known for her work as an orchestral musician and film composer, has created a unique new solo album, Chimères, that spotlights an obscure instrument.

Music

ONO Confronts American Racial Oppression with the Incendiary 'Red Summer'

Decades after their initial formation, legendary experimentalists ONO have made an album that's topical, vital, uncomfortable, and cathartic. Red Summer is an essential documentation of the ugliness and oppression of the United States.

Music

Jim White and Marisa Anderson's 'The Quickening' Takes an Experimental Journey

Avant-garde drummer Jim White and folk guitarist Marisa Anderson get together without rehearsing to see what happens on The Quickening.

Music

NIIKA Makes a Striking, Multifaceted Full-Length Debut with 'Close But Not Too Close'

The Uzbekistan-born, Chicago-raised NIIKA combines art-pop and exotic jazz stylings to create a deeply rewarding listening experience on Close But Not Too Close.

Music

"Weird Music Is Still Good": Erik Hall on Isolation and Pulling Off an Impossible Steve Reich-ian Feat

Finding himself at a loose end, Erik Hall doesn't indulge in Netflix marathons or spends time sorting out his closet, instead he recreates Steve Reich's seminal masterpiece Music for 18 Musicians in his basement. And then he tells PopMatters about it.

Ian Rushbury
Music

Markus Floats Creates a Warm Space That Never Dallies in One Place for Long

Third Album reflects experimental electronic artist Markus Floats' belief that music isn't just something one does. It's a life one leads, so each release is an excerpted component of an ongoing and all-encompassing journey.

Music

All That Jazz and Then Some: An Interview with Defunkt's Joseph Bowie

Constructed with the intricacies of jazz, charged with the muscular pump of rock, and executed with punk's ferocity, Defunkt remains one of popular music's most intriguing acts. Frontman Joseph Bowie talks with PopMatters about the band's long, colourful, and arduous journey.

Music

Nicolás Jaar's 'Cenizas' Is a Woozy, Ambient Masterwork

Cenizas is the sound of Nicolás Jaar skirting around the edges of his own sound—skeletal, stripped-back, examining the little things that made his music so great to begin with.

Music

Novelty and Identity: An Interview With Colin Stetson

Colin Stetson discusses his process for scoring film and artistic satisfaction it gives him. "I get to invent a new array of solutions with novelty and identity. I hope the music has not existed in the particular guise and aesthetic before that."

Music

Talking Book's New Ambient Score for an Imagined Film Is Engaging

The new LP from the Faith No More/Gigante Sound side project, Talking Book, is an interesting collection of ambient soundscapes, but could use more narrative heft.

Music

The 10 Best Experimental "Albums" of 2010

It's not that more experimental-type music was made in 2010. It's just that more of it was getting heard.

Music

Matt Evans' Ambient Soundscapes Transcend the Genre on 'New Topographics'

New York-based percussionist/composer, Matt Evans brilliantly infuses his spacey sonic landscapes with the sounds of everyday life on New Topographics.

Music

Sufjan Stevens and Lowell Brams Create a Soothing 'Aporia'

Sufjan Stevens' and Lowell Brams' Aporia is ambient music meant to calm and provide a background to the quotidian aspects of one's day.

Music

Matthew D. Gantt's 'Diagnostics' Is Complex, Futuristic, and Totally Bonkers

Experimental artist, composer and educator Matthew D. Gantt has created a delightful new album, Diagnostics, that's both maddeningly dense and refreshingly playful.

Music

Sir Richard Bishop's Guitar Histrionics Sound Dream-like on 'Oneiric Formulary'

Oneiric Formulary being a Sir Richard Bishop record, there are moments, of course, that will blow your mind.

Music

VickiKristinaBarcelona Celebrate Tom Waits on "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" (premiere)

VickiKristinaBarcelona celebrate the singular world of Tom Waits their upcoming debut, Pawn Shop Radio. Hear "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" ahead of tomorrow's single release.

Music

Alison Chesley Toils in Human and Musical Connectivity on Helen Money's 'Atomic'

Chicago-based cellist, Alison Chesley (a.k.a. Helen Money) creates an utterly riveting listen from beginning to end on Atomic.

Music

New Brain Trajectory: An Interview With Lee Ranaldo and Raül Refree

Two guitarists, Lee Ranaldo and Raül Refree make an album largely absent of guitar playing and enter into a bold new phase of their careers. "We want to take this wherever we can and be free of genre restraints," says Lee Ranaldo.

Music

Yves Tumor Soars With 'Heaven to a Tortured Mind'

On Heaven to a Tortured Mind, Yves Tumor relishes his shift to microphone caressing rock star. Here he steps out of his sonic chrysalis, dons some shiny black wings and soars.

Music

Weeks Island's 'Droste' Is a New High Water Mark in Ambient Steel (EP stream) (premiere)

Lost Bayou Ramblers' Jonny Campos turns up as Weeks Island with Brian Eno/Cluster-inspired music straight from the bayou. Hear Droste in full ahead of its release on Friday.

Music

David Bowie: 25 Deep Cuts (Playlist)

For all of the imagery that dominated the religiosity of David Bowie  --  the fashion, the characters, the hairstyles --  what matters most are the songs. Here are 25 killer deep-cut Bowie originals, album by album.

Music

Nick Storring's 'My Magic Dreams Have Lost Their Spell' Is Beautiful, Haunting, and Otherworldly

Canadian composer Nick Storring's latest album, My Magic Dreams Have Lost Their Spell, is mysterious, multilayered, and unforgettable.

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