Sometimes, quality just stands out and I think that really applies to Mike Silver’s work as CFCF. He has released a number of extended ep’s and one full length album to date as well as many remixes. I have to say, nearly everything I have come across has been exceptionally good – I was particularly fond of the Panesian Nights ep that was a collection of slow, electro disco tracks that could also pass as a form of deep house.
I have been listening to his latest ep Exercises regularly since it was released this year. It is, in the main, a collection of piano/keyboard led instrumentals, apparently influenced by the work of composers such as Ryuichi Sakamoto and Philip Glass. Some of the tracks still carry that 80s synth sound he has utilised before, but many of the tracks are beautiful, stripped down piano pieces and what makes these tracks interesting is how these sounds play off each other, the harsher, electronic synths being countered by the warmth of a more pure piano sound. It was hard to pick a track and I went back and forth in my selection between the one vocal track on the album, Exercise 5 (September) and some of the more direct instrumental pieces such as the tremendous Exercise 2 (School). In the end I have plumped for the vocal track.
In lesser hands a track like this could be meaningless, just another track that blends into the electronica wilderness. But this is just too good for that to happen, the soft piano, synths and vocals are punctuated by the sharpest of broken beats, sharper synth lines that escalate throughout the track and a dirty bass line that gives the whole thing weight. It is such a wonderful track that I found myself with the biggest smile, shaking my head in admiration as I repeated it over and over again, louder and louder through my headphones this morning. Absolute quality.
Playlist Wednesday 14th November 2012
Today was my second journey to London this week, and while I do it all the time, it is always difficult to say goodbye to my wife and boy and leave them to set off on their normal journey to work while I head for the train. So to cheer myself up and give me a soundtrack to work to I put on the CFCF ep mentioned above. It was on repeat all the way down and the posted track got several replays in its own right. The warmth of the music was the perfect remedy for having to make another long commute.
When I got to London I set the player to shuffle to soundtrack my blast across London. I haven’t updated my music for a while but my opportunities to listen to the content have been fe lately. Still, blind luck seems to throw up just the thing you need and straight out of the traps was Elvis Perkins (son of Anthony Perkins of Psycho fame) ‘I heard your voice in Dresden’, an absolutely immense track that got me marching through the tube throwing out little kicks as I went. If you are in anyway interested in singer songwriter music that has a real quality and personality then you should check his work out it is head and shoulders above stuff that gets bundled into the same category. Actually, the same could be said for the next track that came on, ‘I Just Can’t Lose’ by The Deep Dark Woods which is exceptional alt country. A massive diversion came next via the previously posted Andrew Ashong’s ‘Flowers’, then to the hasze pop of Benoit Pioulard (‘Physic’) and then the always excellent The Wave Pictures – ‘Seagulls’ – a real stand out track from their last album Long Black Cars. The smiles kept coming via the New Order’ish, fantasticness of Craft Spell’s ‘Beauty Above All’ and the reverb craziness of Destroyer’s ‘3000 Flowers’ which every poor bugger in the same lift as me probably got a shot of as I decided not to turn my headphones down as we travelled up to the office. Oh Well.
Playlist: Elvis Perkins In Dearland – I heard your voice in Dresden, The Deep Dark Woods – I just can’t lose, Andrew Ashong – Flowers, Beniot Pioulard – Physic, The Wave Pictures – Seagulls, Craft Spells – Beauty above all, Destroyer – 3000 Flowers.