The work of producer/multi-instrumentalist Michel Simons and multi-instrumentalist Adrian Jones, Jet Black Sea was originally conceived as a side project to Jones’s prog rock band Nine Stones Close. A vehicle for experimentation, their debut release ‘The Path of Least Existence’ mixed elements of prog rock, ambient music, electronica and post rock with fantastic results. A follow-up ‘Absorption Lines’ was almost five years in the making. Absorbing more mellow prog rock sounds than before – presumably since Nine Stones Close had, by that time, veered towards a more prog metal sound on their 2016 LP ‘Leaves’ – the album was well received among online prog fans.
Formed in Seattle in 2010, experimental electronic act Darto have spent years carving themselves a niche in the musical underground. Their music, while always interesting, isn’t always completely accessible; that said, somewhere within its darkness – for those able to invest the time – haunting songs eventually emerge. Don’t expect big hooks, though, since Darto are all about the overall mood. On their 2018 EP ‘Fundamental Slime’ (recorded by the legendary Steve Fisk), the songs take many cues from the darker and artier side of the late 70s – a period after Roxy Music had all but abandoned art for pop sheen and Ultravox were not the worldwide hit makers known to millions, but a Roxy/Eno obsessed synth band.
Don Henley’s ‘The Boys of Summer’ is one of the most enduring songs of the 80s. There’s something in the narrative that seems to resonate with so many people. Maybe it’s the thoughts of summers past; maybe it conjures memories of lost friendships. Whatever it is, so many people love it and over the years it’s been covered in a variety of styles.
Louis Waxman is a Brooklyn based musician, sometime member of bands The Mayberries and Future Heart. His 2018 solo EP ‘Songs From The Truck’, as its title suggests, has an “of the moment” feel; a naturalistic set of sounds that would be a great soundtrack for a road trip. Mixing indie pop, electronica and funk it’s a bit of a mixed bag, but like similarly retro Norwegians Mats Wawa, there’s something in his sound that has the ability to lift the listeners’ spirits in just about…thirty seconds.
Lotte Van Den Berg, an artist and producer specialising in electronica is launching a new label, Sixteen Records. Not only the label founder, Lotte will also be taking on production, as well as the mastering and mixing for the majority of Sixteen Records’ planned releases.
Her main aim with the new label is to bring together disparate styles of alternative electronic music and its first release does exactly that. ‘Sixteen Records Vol. 1’ brings together twelve acts from right across the electronic music spectrum, so there’s a good chance that even the merely curious will find something to enjoy.