Jan 19, 2014

Sundaze 1403

Hello,  one of those things I come across when researching the web is how many acts fail to put any information out there, it's not as if it's expensive or terribly timeconsuming, it's stupid that's what it is. So you get together and record something in order to be able to share it with the rest of the world and then ...nothing, nobody get's to hear about it. Admittedly many bands think it's the label's job but a lot of labels fail big time, they simply lack the insight and willingness to spend time and money and make use of the internet to reach their potentially huge client base and so it's up to the band to do their own thing , have a facebook account, twitter away, post vids on youtube, accumulate reviews hell it ain't exactly brainsurgery. Alas todays artist and his label are typical of this shortfall

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Harald Karla aka Jonson is an electronic music artist from germany who released his three albums Chiplandschaften, P_Composing and Mindlook on Mikrolux – a sublabel of Elektrolux. He's a seeker, constantly working the circuits and codes of his computer to elicit emotional as possible sounds.   ... N'Joy

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The Mikrolux label once again proves itself as an outstanding talent factory. The new member of the label’s artist family is named Jonson and is presenting a strong first release called „Chiplandschaften“.(=Chip environments)

More than two and a half years of work were invested into this debut and a great deal of this time, producer Harald Karla has put into the breathtaking production technique of his music: all tracks are based on 8-bit sounds only which the computer fetishist has exclusively created with an Commodore Amiga 1200. Step by step, the Amiga sounds then have been recorded manually with an Yamaha A5000 sampler and in another step have been further worked on. In this very rangy kind of work process, Jonson has produced all thirteen tracks plus two bonus tracks of his debut.

Not surprisingly, the album shows an incredibly unique sound, quiet, harmonic tracks are being mixed with subtle grooving beats („Autumnbits“), weightless worlds of sound („Tiefszene“, „r.e.s.a.m.p.l.e.“, „Prozessordenken“) invite you to float thoughtlessly. Finally, with the beautiful, song-like melodies of „Chiplandschaften“, Smallbitter“ or „Recyclestep“ it goes unsaid that Jonson already must be looked at as the uncrowned king of computer soul. Peaceful, harmonious together with grooving beats invite you into a thoughtless absent music.

Jonson - Chiplandschaften (flac  415mb)

01 8 Versus 16 6:27
02 Wide Chip 7:30
03 Chiplandschaften 1 4:46
04 November's Visitor 5:01
05 Tiefszene 2:58
06 R.E.S.A.M.P.L.E. 3:32
07 Autumnbits 1 7:05
08 8B-SQ 6:14
09 Prozessordenken 5:48
10 Smallbitter 2:54
11 Freeware 6:27
12 Recyclestep 6:52
13 Autumnbits 2 2:56
14 Chiplandschaften 2 5:09
15 Tiefszene Plugged 2:55
Jonson - Chiplandschaften  (ogg 199mb)

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Do computers have a soul? Are they able to create emotions by all those zeroes and ones and to develop an aesthetic interface for poetry and music? By his second album for Mikrolux, the Niederrhein-based sound researcher Harald Karla again explores the emotional subtext and harmonies in the binary code of his computer. This time, however, he strikes less strictly technical paths as with his 2005 debut album „Chiplandschaften“ completely made of Commodore Amiga 1200 samples (also released on Mikrolux). Thus, the natural romance of tracks like 'D.A.Y.R.A.I.N.', 'A.I.R.P.O.R.T.', 'S.Y.N.C.E.D.', 'A.K.U.S.T.I.K.E.R.' or 'B.R.I.T.T.L.E.' is even more surprising. These sounds are bewitching the listener and take him to sensual depths with apparently agravic ease. Selected from more than thirty productions from the past two and a half years, the fourteen tracks of 'p_composing' all represent the vision of reproducing ambient jazz by means of downtempo elektro.

Jonson - P Composing (flac 397mb)

01 S.C.E.N.E. O.N.E. 3:59
02 N.O. R.E.T.U.R.N. 4:56
03 S.C.E.N.E. T.W.O. 5:42
04 A.R.P.P.L.A.Y.I.N. 4:08
05 Q.U.I.N.T.U.M. 5:20
06 D.A.Y.R.A.I.N. 6:18
07 S.I.G.H.T.S.E.E.I.N.G. 3:10
08 A.I.R.P.O.R.T. 5:10
09 M.O.O.N.D.A.Y. 4:56
10 S.Y.N.C.E.D. 4:51
11 A.K.U.S.T.I.K.E.R. 5:13
12 W.H.E.R.E.O.N.E. 4:59
13 B.R.I.T.T.L.E. 7:37
14 N.O.V.E.M.B.E.R. N.I.G.H.T. 6:36

Jonson - P Composing  (ogg 178mb)

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Jonson is the alter ego of Harald Karla who has released three albums so far, Mindlook being the third and most prolific one, capturing a dark and arcane atmosphere. The themes of darkness and mystery are coupled with an aquatic setting that is aurally presented with synthesizer raindrops and low bass lines in many a song. Although comparisons with Vangelis wear thin, Mindlook sounds like it was written specifically for an unreleased Blade Runner entry that takes place primarily underwater. The permanent deep drones and the echoey fizzles evoke the feeling of being trapped in a submarine. Even though these elements sound rather clichéd as they have been featured time and again in movies about submarines, vaults and aliens, a whole album without distracting pictures is a totally different and paradoxically enhancing experience. Though not all track titles refer to the wettest of all ancient elements, the whole album is bursting due to the implied water masses that are in the mix. Jonson doesn‘t realize them with field recordings or synthesizer bubbles, but with whirling soundcarpets and deep rumbles that evoke the feelings of loneliness and amplify the raw power of the prevalent pressure underwater.

Fishsoup breathes and exemplifies the spirits which I have described heretofore: Deeply trembling bass lines, a submerged atmosphere and the hollow surroundings of a submarine mark the cinematic beginning. A beautiful piano melody is played, and though it is clear cut, it remains fragile and weak as the permanently heavy rumbles and incisive brake noises cause a richly textured, but lonely mood, as if the listener were swallowed by the ocean. Shine features eerie bass pulses and a distant blizzard. Synth vibes, reverberated strings and cold electronic howls create a feeling of calmness at first, but the tension rises with the addition of a short but pressing 4-note loop that is played along the other textures. Both tracks so far are really dark and intimidating. This doesn‘t change at all when Electro Rain begins with its rhythmical staccato of muffled rain drops and slow strings in the background. Sizzles wash over the listener and the permanent rumbles add deepness to a song which is otherwise illuminated with brighter elements, without being playful, naturally. From Here To Here, however, changes the formula for the first time by introducing a soothing coldness that is realized with synth strings, angelic synth pads and the omission of overly deep basslines or intensifying sibilance. Foretime is an ethereal Ambient tune similar to Thom Brennan‘s Vibrant Water album with a despaired mood, sublime synth pads and cold upswells and downfalls of synth strings. This song is rich in sound and doesn‘t leave room for empty spaces; every second is filled with ample synths, further broadening the range of style on Mindlook without causing a break in style.

In tranquillity lies the key to strength. After his releases „Chiplandschaften“ and „p_composing“,  sound searcher Jonson slowly but surely starts a new ambient decelerating process on his new album „Mindlook“. He uses spherical elements rather than beat and rhythm to consciously take a look inside and concentrating on the essential without red herring. His typical melodies which take some time to their full development, the individual tracks bring about sound images evoking very different associations in the respective listener. When getting totally involved with the album and finding yourself in atmosspheric sound scapes far away from the fast-paced everyday life, you will get to the very deepness of your inner soul

Jonson - Mindlook (flac 288mb)

01 Fishsoup 4:26
02 Shine 5:00
03 Electrorain 6:20
04 Fromheretothere 5:47
05 Moontoearth 5:53
06 Foretime 5:33
07 Septemberswinter 5:15
08 Reasonofsenses 7:05
09 Sleep 7:25
10 Fromtheoutside Part One 5:48
11 Futurewillbethepastofthepresent 7:10
12 Fromtheoutside Part Two 10:27

Jonson - Mindlook (ogg 168mb)

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1 comment:

Peter Tron said...

hi rho,

glad there's guys like yourself still blogging.
i just wanted to let you know that i'm currently listening to the dron lp parsec, and to say that i'm really enjoying it.
many thanks!