Nov. 30 Reviews / Good Recommendations

Despite the long weekend with the holiday, I only managed five reviews this week. I am a slacker, I know. More stuff coming next week, I promise.

As a follow-up to last weeks question, are their any specific artists or releases that you've really enjoyed that you discovered via this site and the reviews here? Feel free to continue making entries in last weeks thread if you feel I've been wrong about something. I'll hold it open if conversation continues.

Commenting has been closed on this article.

Nah, this thing has gotten spammed more times that I can count. I try to stay on top of deleting them, but it's hard to catch them all. If it weren't for spam, I'd make it so each review could be commented on, but I can't imagine the nightmare of trying to regulate that...

Damn spam. Ughhh.

Jon this the first time that this has happened?

I second the comment concerning Tim Hecker, both on my feelings about buying the album and how I felt afterwards.

And I wasn't aware that there was a 'sort by rating' option...that's exciting.

i couldnt find the myspace site for radicalfashion, for some reason it was just coming up with radical fashion sites. Cheers for that

Wow, speaking of discoveries, that Motohiro Nakashima album sounds really great! Not only does it sound great but I'm a big sucker for great artwork too. Thanks for the podcast!

As for the subject on discovering, I think most of the times its more like a confirmation than a real discovery. Albums that I'm already interested in but only after reading your review that I'm truly intended to actually buy the album. Tim Hecker is a recent example. I was interested in him for a while but after reading your review for his latest record I knew I had to buy it. It actually happens to be one of my favorites this year.

Another great example is the Steve Reich 5cd boxset which you reviewed recently. His discography is very daunting so where in the hell are you going to start if you're new to him like me? Based on your review I bought Phases in an instant and currently I find myself listening to it pretty much nonstop.

In 2004 I had three actual major discoveries through your reviews. Three albums that I now find among my very favourites; Deathprod's "Morals and Dogma", Max Richter’s “The Blue Notebooks” and Scorch Trio's "Luggumt". And there are so many other albums that I found over the last couple of years through your review archive and year lists. Together with I regard your website as the most influential for my musical taste like it is today.

As for the Max Richter review; I agree that it unfortunately cannot match the high standard of The Blue Notebooks. It’s still a great record for sure but lacks just that small touch of brilliance. On a more personal level it would have been impossible anyway to match The Blue Notebooks (which happens to be my biggest discovery through your website so far) as I played "On the Nature of Daylight" from The Blue Notebooks for my grandfather on his cremation ceremony a couple of months ago. This has really made the album all the more special to me. It’s through these personal memories that music can become much more than just music alone and when that happens it becomes part of you are.

I will go with 3 artists that i wouldn't have gotten into if almost cool was not around:
1- Deathprod (thank you so much for this one)
2- Jan Jelinek
3- Dead Texan

I'm not sure which way you discovered the Arvo Part in the archives, but that's why I built the search by ratings into the site. If you want to read about the music I think is best, start at 10's (which Arvo Part got) and basically work your way down from there. Basically everything from a 8.5 up I would recommend to just about everyone, and honestly everything at about 7.5 or above is pretty damn good as well.

Of course, that is just my opinion. :)

Amy Annelle. The Places don't seem to get much recognition/distribution, but I'm very glad to have heard A School of Secret Dangers.

Arvo Part. Just discovered this in your archives a few days ago, actually. Spellbinding.

Balanescu Quartet and Madagascar. Same as above.

Chris Clark, Matt Elliott, Deathprod, and (believe it or not), Talking Heads or some others. Of course I knew about Talking Heads, but I hadn't bother to listen to them. Remain in Light has become one of my favourite albums.

So thank you! I'm glad to hear you also find the reader lists helpful, even if our reviews are brief or non-existant ;-)

Of your more recent reviews...
Black Devil Disco Club
Incredible Bongo Band
Chloe & Ivan Smagghe

agree on white birch ever since you recommended it has been one of the greatest finds via almostcool. Listening to motohiro podcast it also seems like a winner to me. I find your reviews very accurate and akin to my taste most of the time so I'd have to say I've enjoyed around 95% of the albums rated 7.5 and higher on the site.

To answer your off topic question, it seems that radicalfashion released a record called "Odori" on Hefty Records this year at some point. He (or she) has a myspace page at

I actually heard of Beirut through your site, the first time I visited it actually. Contrary to some opinions from the last thread I really really have enjoyed Beirut.

One quick question for anyone. I bought the most recent Wire Magazine, and on its Wire Tapper cd, is a great track by a Japanese artist called radicalfashion. I can't find anything about this guy anywhere. Can anyone help?

For me there has been several over the years (not only through your reviews but the invaluable resource of readers end of year lists too).

This year, howver, both Phon Noir and The White Birch have been excellent recommendations