Saturday, July 13, 2013

Elemental - Demdike Stare (#4, 2012)

Sooooo... Elemental, by Demdike Stare (#8 of 2010, #3 Free Mixes of 2010 & #9 Archival Release, 2012). It's massive, already too massive as it was coming out as 4 vinyl parts - to be housed in a massive art-book binder.

Eventually a 2xCD collection was released with most of the vinyl, some alternate version replacements, and some bonus tracks... with different track order. So the original vinyl series kicked off with "Mephisto's Lament" - the second tune on the CD's, following "New Use for Old Circuits," which is not on the vinyl.

Demdike Stare - Elemental (2CD Version) by modernlove

That's the whole 2xCD release right there. There's a 20-second-longer non-(Alternate Version) of "Unction" on the vinyl. Alternates are the vinyl deep cuts, but the big 'hits,' like "Mephisto's Lament" and "Violetta," transfer in their original form.

"Mnemosyne" from Elemental 2: Violetta @ 33.3 (2011)

That one comes over the same, but you have to be careful to get the right speed. Two YouTubers have put it up at 33-1/3 rpm... a mistake I myself have made. And here again, I think I'll side with the slower, wronger speed. Speaking of slower, I very much like the non-vinyl, 'bonus' CD tracks "Shade" and "10th Floor Stairwell."

Not to be negative, this kind of low-down spooky doomtronics seems to be on the way out for Demdike. Maybe just temporary until the next major project? Or yet another great act's style evolving away from what I dig? Only time will tell...

"Violetta" from Elemental 2: Violetta (2011)

Official video released when the vinyl pack was just launching. Anyway, the whole thing's pretty great - sometimes rhythmically inventive, sometimes moody & weird, sometimes something else... The CD's are streamable up there, and the vinyl's probably moot at this point. Couple more cool videos, then I'll wrap it up.

"Erosion of Mediocrity" from Elemental 3: Rose (2012)

Great tune, great video!

"Dauerlinie" from Elemental 4: Iris (2012)

Another favorite track for me. These last three made the digital transition unscathed. Okay, okay...

In February (of 2012), Demdike Stare also dropped a free Modern Love mix/Elemental podcast, "Irrational Advice" - worth checking out. (Tracklist info at the bottom of this post.)

So then there was/is the Slant Azymuth project between them & Andy Votel. For whatever reason, I've listened to this very few times. I never actively disliked it - maybe because it's vinyl only, and so less convenient? But I don't think that's the whole reason. Hold on, I'm going to listen to it now...

"Intervision 1" by Slant Azymuth, from Slant Azymuth (2012)

Maybe I've been put off by the first track/intro, "Gray Equidae," over a minute of cello scrapings & nonsense. (Maybe it's the cover art?) After that, the record alternates between Intervisions [above] and pieces with 'real' names. Like "Black Crolyn," which keeps it short but is still kinda nonsense - rhythmical this time. And yet "Intervision 2" is a little more like it.

"Helican Scan" by Slant Azymuth, from Slant Azymuth (2012)

Hey, I think I might be warming up to (parts of) this! The last couple are a 3rd, final, short Intervision [okay] and "U-Matic Thrill." Despite the name, this last track isn't a New Power Generation-era Prince jam. It's probably the most Demdikesque on the album. So, yeah... despite some weak points, I don't think I had given Slant Azymuth a fair shake. Pretty decent overall!


Genre - Dark Occult-Dub Ambient
Official/Myspace -
Location - Lancashire, Britain

Review - Austinist
Download - Amazon, iTunes
Purchase - Forced Exposure