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B. Lasnier "themilkfactory" (London/UK)
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Hello! UK Graphics: Graphic Design in the UK Since the 1980s
Hello! UK Graphics: Graphic Design in the UK Since the 1980s
by PIE Books
Edition: Paperback
Price: £28.00

3.0 out of 5 stars A good book let down by bad translation, 7 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This book offers a nice selection of graphic studios and work and interviews with designers. However, it is seriously let down by extremely poor translation. Originally a Japanese book, this has both the Japanese text and English translation, but the translation feels at time like it was done using Google Translate instead of being done by a proper interpreter. Whilst it doesn't affect the actual work presented, it it difficult to take this book too seriously because of the rather shabby editorial work.


CREATIVE EP-830 In-ear Earphones for iPods and MP3 players for Lecteurs MP3 et iPod Earbud earphones Headphones
CREATIVE EP-830 In-ear Earphones for iPods and MP3 players for Lecteurs MP3 et iPod Earbud earphones Headphones

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very disapointing, 26 Aug. 2010
I got these earphones recently but found them extremely disappointing. The sound quality is OK, but not great, comfort is once again OK, but nothing exceptional. What I have found the most irritating with these though is how poorly insulated the cable is. If I happen to tap on the cable while using them, I can actually hear the sound of it though the earphones, something which I have never experienced with any earphones before and which can be very uncomfortable. I don't think I will bother with any other earphones from Creative in the future.


Philips SHS8000/00 Earhook Headphones
Philips SHS8000/00 Earhook Headphones

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Aweful, truly aweful, 18 May 2009
I bought these as I was looking for a pair of decent earphones for the gym. I've had Philips earphones in the past, and they've always been pretty good. The sound quality of these is virtually none. Music sounds like it's coming out of a telephone, with way too much treble and too much difference between treble and bass.

Also, the fit is poor. They just don't stay in place at all. A 20 minute session on the treadmill turned into a nightmare pretty much straight away trying to keep them in place. I would recommend them for any purpose whatsoever.


Somnia
Somnia
Price: £15.11

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful drone-based work, 23 Sept. 2005
This review is from: Somnia (Audio CD)
Greg Davis's latest effort is a far cry from the bucolic ambiences of his previous records. While he spent most of his two previous albums, Arbor and Curling Pond Woods, defining superbly delicate and textured off-beat pop melodies based on acoustic instrumentation augmented with processed beats and sounds, Somnia is a much sterner piece of work. Yet, this album has far more in common with its predecessors than meets the ear and helps draw a more complete and detailed map of Davis's craftsmanship.
A collector of refined field recordings and arranger of rich soundscapes par excellence, Greg Davis has been exploring more rudimentary settings for some time, developing an interest for drone-based music in the process. Somnia collects six compositions recorded within the last few years, each based around one singular source instrument, ranging from acoustic guitar or Fender Rhodes to bowed psaltery. In turn exposing sound in its roughest, most austere, form (Archer), or continuously working at it to highlight minute alterations in tone (Diaphanous, Campestral), Davis carves each element, each variation, with incredible precision. Far from presenting a static piece of work, he develops here a magnificent series of evocative compositions.
The variety and scope of these tracks, especially that of the piece de resistance of this album, the epic twenty-two minute long Campestral, is truly characteristic of Davis's work and a direct result of his fascination for sound interactions. On the pastoral Diaphonous, here presented in an edited version, the full version of which was recently released on an eponymous EP (Lux Nigra), Davis works from a toy harmonica source, processing its various tonalities into superbly detailed layers to form a vibrant ensemble, while Mirages (Version 2) is based on a Schaaf punchcard music box, the sound of which, when processed, becomes strangely metallic and mechanical, bringing Somnia onto an eerie conclusion.
With this album, Greg Davis clearly positions himself at the forefront of experimental music alongside his friend Keith Fullerton Whitman and provides a more complete image of his work by placing his previous two albums in a totally new context. Clearly defining wider sonic structures within which to progress, Davis impresses by his clever appropriation of electronic and acoustic spaces and his mastery at shaping them at will.


In Finite
In Finite
Price: £6.09

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Live instrumentation spices up electronic sosundscapes, 12 July 2005
This review is from: In Finite (Audio CD)
'I really want to do a full live set led by piano... something that can stand on its own free from electronics.' Such was Dan Berridge's vision, expressed during an interview given almost two years ago. Following a second album on which he confronted his sweeping cinematic sound to traditional song structures by working with a vocalist, Berridge now investigates more intrinsically organic scopes, bringing the particular aesthetic of live jazz into his heavily emotional atmospheric soundscapes. For his third album, his first for Manchester-based Grand Central Records, Dan Berridge brings on board a string of collaborators and takes his project in yet another direction.
Dan Berridge grew up listening to jazz and classical music, before he developed an interest in more contemporary musical forms such as hip-hop and electronica. Set on a collision course, these diverse influences resulted in the formation of Broadway Project. Signed to London-based Memphis Industries he went on to release a series of haunting EPs between 1999 and 2001, followed by his debut album, Compassion. Two years later, Berridge returned with The Vessel. Until then, Broadway Project had very much been Berridge's brainchild, but The Vessel saw the man sharing the workload with vocalist Richard Palmer and developing a different approach to his music.
In Finite returns to the largely instrumental atmospherics of Compassion, but the focus here is very much on bringing in live instrumentation and developing Berridge's inspired sonic ambience within this new settings. Although he is still very much the sole driving force behind Broadway Project, In Finite features a number of contributors, including jazz pianist Matthew Bourne and double bass player Riaan Vosloo, with additional contributions from Christophe De Bezemac (saxophone), Rohan Kriwaczek (flutes), Julie Sharpe (strings) an James White (guitars). Here once again, the soundscapes are poignant and sumptuous, wrapped around Bourne's omnipresent piano, and serves Berridge's complex melodies perfectly. More than ever, the impressive range of Berridge's music is set against an abundance of sonic details (exotic instrumentation, finger percussions, environmental interferences), giving these compositions a reinforced element of urgency.
On In Finite, Berridge investigates jazz and classical influences in far greater depth than on previous recordings. On I, Partisan, De Bezemac's sax draws beautiful arabesques over the intricate sonic layers which form the backbone of the track, while Kriwaczeck's flutes prevents Blood In The Temple from irrevocably turning to dark moody tones. Elsewhere, Bourne's crystalline piano lines define beautiful structures, echoing from track to track, acting as a common thread throughout.
Although In Finite shows Broadway Project in new lights, the soul of Berridge music is truly alive all the way through. In Finite shares with Compassion its density and sombre moods, but the influx of energy and subtle touches brought on board by his collaborators give this album a far greater depth and only highlight Berridge as one of the most talented musicians of his generation.


La Maison De Mon Reve
La Maison De Mon Reve
Price: £10.46

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful album, 12 July 2005
This review is from: La Maison De Mon Reve (Audio CD)
La Maison De Mon Rêve is one of these records that you either love or hate. Nothing can really prepare for the dilettante approach adopted by CocoRosie here, and the decidedly amateurish finish of a record that has far more to offer than can be appreciated at first. If the term lo-fi needed to be defined, it would be by this album.
Although she trained as an opera singer in high school, and despite receiving praises from the world of classical music, Sierra Casady, who had began singing gospel and spirituals as a child, wanted more than just belting out pieces written by others. Composing new classical material while performing is not always seen very well in the sometimes precious world of classical music, and Sierra decided that what she was looking for was to be found somewhere else. Equally, Bianca spent years trying to find a way to express herself, finally ending up in Paris with just her sister's phone number in hand. After leading completely different lives for some time, Sierra and Bianca were reunited through music. It was only a matter of time before the pair started playing together.
Recorded during the spring and summer of last year in a tiny Parisian flat, this album is far more colourful and, in part, disturbing, than it's innocent title, which translates as 'the house in my dream', would lead to think. La Maison De Mon Rêve resounds to the sound of blues, gospel, early jazz and folk, yet everything here appears deceptively simple and childish. The density of CocoRosie's songs is the fruit of the chemistry that exists between the two sisters. The melodies have the kind of innocence and sweetness of little girls' playground songs, the guitar lines are almost too plain to be taken seriously, and the approximative beats and noises found scattered here and there only accentuate the amateurish feel of this record. Yet, it would be easy to dismiss this collection of poetic blues/folk for something totally unsubstantial. Between Vanessa Paradis and Billie Holliday, Nina Simone and Maria Callas, the sisters' voices whirlwind around each other, play hide and seek, tease, twist the mood and destabilising. CocoRosie's lyrics are as perverse as they appear innocent on the surface, with tortuous tales of love, faith, devotion or sex splattered all over By Your Side, Jesus Loves Me, Tahiti Rain Song or Lyla, and it rapidly becomes difficult to resist their little universe becoming yours, if only for a moment.
This album sometimes proves difficult to sustain, even over forty minutes. CocoRosie haven't made things easy for themselves here, crafting a strange and disconcerting record out of almost nothing. La Maison De Mon Rêve can only be appreciated under certain circumstances, preferably when the mind is relaxed and slightly out of focus. When the mood is right though, it becomes precious and reveals its hidden beauties. If just for these moments, this album is simply splendid.


Children Of Possibility
Children Of Possibility
Price: £9.08

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting laidback mood, 12 July 2005
This review is from: Children Of Possibility (Audio CD)
Unlike the majority of DJ Vadim's previous projects, One Self is not just another solitary excursion into musicdom, but a bona fide band, formed with Swedish-Brazilian singer/MC Yarah Bravo and American MC Blu Rum 13. Both are long-term collaborators of Vadim, notably as part of his touring band, Russian Percussions, and this project is very much the fruit of a common effort.
Following two critically acclaimed singles, Be Your Own and the recent Bluebird, the trio are now bringing their first album, Children Of Possibility, just on time for it to resonate all throughout the summer. With all three taking equal ownership of what One Self is about, there is no space for oversized egos here. Still, both vocalists define their own breathing space, while at times crossing each other's path. Blu Rum regularly ventures into off-beat poetry, shaping clever rhymes with ease, while Bravo appears more straight-talking and upfront. Meanwhile, Vadim crafts impeccable minimal hip-hop beats on which he hangs a variety of sounds, referencing in turn ethnic percussions or instrumentations, dub and jazz. Children Of Possibility has the hazy feel of a hot summer afternoon on the black sea Riviera.
Snaking its way through various atmospheric settings to progressively impregnate the brain and get under the skin, this album is not as instantaneous and accessible as the singles could have led to think. Still, One Self keep things rather simple all the way through, layering vocals, beats and samples to highlight the exchanges between each member. On Bluebird or Hollow Human Being, One Self expose Yarah Bravo's impressive and soulful singing alongside her rapping, and provide in the process some of the highlights of this record while Blu Rum pertinently draws subtle lines around Vadim's beats and confidently delivers his stories, especially on the impressive Fear Of The Labour, Temptation and Paranoid.
For this first project together, One Self showcase an interesting vision of laidback contemporary hip-hop that's got more to say than most. Yet, this album requires a few listens before its depth becomes fully palpable. Children Of Possibility shouldn't be approached as one of Vadim's project, but very much as the work of a new entity. If the Vadim touch is present all the way through, notably on the instrumental SD2, he leaves the centre stage to his two partners in crime, providing them with all the necessary space to steer these twelve tracks with confidence. In return, Bravo and Blu Rum adorn his composition with skilful rhymes and bring the whole thing to life.


Dol-Goy Assist
Dol-Goy Assist

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A rather convincing debut, 12 July 2005
This review is from: Dol-Goy Assist (Audio CD)
Half way between Autechre and Bola is Quinoline Yellow. Through evocative soundscapes and subtle melodic themes, London-based Luke Williams, who adopted the name of an artificial food colouring additive after reading it on a packaging, creates kaleidoscopic sonic vignettes set within sumptuous self-contained atmospheric structures.
Having spent his formative years in London listening to hardcore techno and drum'n'bass on pirate radio stations and regularly visiting the now defunct Ambient Soho hunt, Williams began experimenting with electronic music in the mid-nineties. After years of solitary work, he sent demo mini-disks to a variety of label and got noticed by Skam who rapidly offered him to feature on one side of a split EP in their Smak series. Since, Williams has released two more EPs (LMW Motors and Cyriak Parasol), a Japan-only CD-R split EP with long-term friend Myles Haughton (Duplo_Remote), and a car air freshener.
Dol-Goy Assist expands on the beautiful soundscapes, crunchy beats and clean-cut melodies of Williams's previous releases. Quinoline Yellow shares with Bola and Boards Of Canada an affinity for fluid sound constructions, but Williams's sharp angular vision gives his music a slightly more mechanical feel. Each composition is assembled with great precision and expertly produced. The shadow of Autechre is sometimes felt slightly too clearly (Liddingstick in particular is very reminiscent of Eggshell), but this hardly affects the general impression created here. Sealed, which opens the album, is a fascinating sonic jigsaw, which appears to constantly materialise, only to evaporate almost instantly, while Tradmarc9 is vintage electronica at its best and Offgroundtouch and Plotreturn reveal hidden orchestral depth. Although Williams explores here a variety of moods, this album remains extremely consistent all the way through, evolving along clearly defined melodic and sonic threads.
Beautifully crafted and put together, Dol-Goy Assist is an extremely convincing and elegant debut album. If Williams sometimes appears to stick to his formula a tad too rigidly, his subtle sound layering and attention to details, combined with heart-warming melodies, ensure that this album delivers again and again.


Outside In
Outside In
Price: £5.73

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Freeform goes from strength to strehngth, 12 July 2005
This review is from: Outside In (Audio CD)
The ground covered by Simon Pykes in the ten years that separate his debut release, the Free EP, already on Skam, to his most recent venture, is truly fascinating. Born in Swindon where he spent most of his formative years experimenting with all sorts of electronic devices, Pykes began recording while in his teen. A chance meeting with Autechre landed him a first EP on their then burgeoning label, Skam, and he later on toured with them, while Ambient Soho's label Worm Interface published his debut album, Elastic Speaker, all this before he turned eighteen. Since, his work has been released on labels as diverse as Quatermass, Warp, Musik Aus Strom, Sub Rosa, Headphone or Sprawl.
Although electronic music has been Simon Pykes's main mean of expression, he has constantly looked for unusual angles to approach his work. His most original and compelling record, Audiotourism: Vietnam & China, took shape while traveling in the Far East. Based on two months spent collecting found sounds in markets, bars, streets and other public places, the album combined up-to-the-minute technology with century-old instruments and vocal forms to create a magnificent and original piece of work.
While his last album, Human, released two years ago, was still packed with ethnic references, Pykes investigates with his most recent record rather different soundscapes. Build around highly experimental electronic sounds, very much reminiscent of the work of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop in parts, Pykes creates a strangely addictive form of cosmic pop on which he sometimes adds vocals or guitars. Alternating between sharp funky instrumentals and light-hearted vocal tracks, Outside In feels at ones familiar yet totally fresh and new. If his compositions remain largely complex and intricate, with abundant sonic details forming wonderfully evocative structures, Pykes also adopts here more straightforward forms, especially on tracks such as This Is Your Life and Follow Your Shadow where he hints at the leftfield electro of Schneider TM. Elsewhere, as on the festive Carnival, Pykes juxtaposes elements of samba, African percussions and bouncey techno, while he delivers some more delicate moments on the closing Everything Changes and Wonderplucks. While the former uses some ethnic instruments, the latter is infused with jazz references.
More laidback and less cluttered than its predecessor, this latest Freeform album is however as eclectic and unpredictable as any of Pykes's previous records, and demonstrates once again his incredible capacity at integrating elements so diverse into credible pieces and instinctively adapt to any new situation. Once again here, he produces a truly convincing piece of work.


Untilted
Untilted
Price: £11.90

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Autechre's most accessiblee record in years, 24 Jun. 2005
This review is from: Untilted (Audio CD)
The title to Autechre's eighth album could be the band's most obvious and bold statement yet. In the fourteen years that separate the release of their very first single, Cavity Job, to their latest opus, Sean Booth and Rob Brown have remained totally impermeable to fashions and gimmicks, influences and distractions. Their complex and impeccable sonic world has remained totally unchallenged, untilted. Except that statements of that sort are not Autechre's style. Sean Booth and Rob Brown are too busy constantly pushing the boundaries of their body of work to brag, or even simply point out the obvious. Their exploration of sound is their statement, abstraction their mode of expression.
Formed in the late eighties by Booth and Brown while the pair lived in Rochdale, a suburb of Manchester and brought together by a passion for hip-hop, street graffiti and skate-boarding, they soon began experimenting, first with tapes and turntables, then with computers and various electronic devices before eventually creating their own machines. Followed a first single, Cavity Job, for the short-lived Hardcore Records in 1991, before they signed with then burgeoning Warp Records. Fourteen years, eight albums and numerous EPs later, Booth and Brown have become the epitome of the Warp sound of the last fifteen years, and are more than ever one of the most uncompromising acts around.
With Untilted, Autechre continue to push the boundaries of their sonic experimentations forward as they assemble forever more intricate and unusual beat structures and sonic constructions, relentlessly pushing their audience into darker, more remote corners. As on their previous two records, Booth and Brown destructure melodic sequences and beat patterns to the point where they appear totally disassociated, pushing sombre waves in the background while unpredictable percussive noises roll ahead. Yet, this album features some of the more playful moments Autechre have recorded in years. Whereas Confield and Draft 7.30 appeared to some too hermetic and distant, as lost in clouds of abstraction, Untilted unveils a series of varied soundscapes draped around often prominent melodic structures. More direct and upfront than its predecessors, this album is built around a far wider sonic scope and varied sequences, ranging from gritty moments (Augmatic Disport, The Trees) to busy metallic structures (Ipacial Section) and electro-magnetic interferences (Pro Radii, Fermium). Human voices can be perceived in many places, be it twisted and treated, as on the final segment of Ipacial Section, as the beat slowly winds down, or on Pro Radii, where distinct chopped up crowd noises can be heard amidst other sonic shards.
With beats and melodies constantly mutating around various themes and sometimes found echoing from one track to another, Autechre create a particularly dense sonic mesh, which contrasts greatly with the arid soil of Confield and, to a lesser extent, Draft 7.30. This doesn't however mark a return to more commonly accepted forms of music for Autechre; they have long since left these to less inspired or adventurous musicians. Untilted is mysterious and complex, yet sociable and playful. Untilted is, above all, one of Autechre's most perfect records to date.


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