(Chapel Performance Space) Most folks, your columnist included, are beyond thrilled that Finnish minimal-techno legend Mika Vainio is crossing the Atlantic to grace us with his uniquely icy and monomaniacal takes on ambient and bare-bones dance music. An innovator of noise-infused techno with Pan Sonic, Vainio (aka Ø) has created a bountiful canon of Andrei Tarkovsky–soundtrack worthy analog synthscapes and industrial- disaster techno. Might be prudent to bring earplugs. Evan Caminiti made his rep in the two-man guitar-desperado lineup of Thrill Jockey artists Barn Owl. Like a slightly more cosmic late-period Earth, Barn Owl loft grandiloquent, twangy, astral drones for those blessed with long attention spans. In his solo work, Caminiti adds synthesizer to his guitar machinations to produce a more interiorized strain of contemplative zoners that may tickle the tympanic membranes of anyone who flipped for those mid-'70s Fripp/Eno LPs. On records like Dreamless Sleep and Night Dust, Caminiti's compositions bloom at the intersection of deep thought and profound bliss. The wife-husband duo of Mamiffer (multi-instrumentalist Faith Coloccia and ex-Isis guitarist Aaron Turner) patiently build somber, majestic songs that sound like doom metal transposed to the conservatory. A mysterious, elegiac mood informs Mamiffer's ennobling gestures and Coloccia's stoic, dulcet vocals. Listening to their music is one of the heaviest ways to get lifted.
(Chop Suey) Rare is the modern-day musician who can replicate the without sounding like a hopeless poseur. To smoothly assimilate the opiated feel and sonic trickery of that late-’60s psych rock in the 21st century requires a special skill set that’s beyond the earnest record-collector pantomime artists. Enigmatic California phenom Morgan Delt is one guy who’s mastered the gloriously disorienting and intricately designed song structures of that era’s best psychonauts. He released Psychic Death Hole in 2012 (Trouble in Mind reissued it this year as Morgan Delt); it sounds like a long-lost psych classic from 1968, but not in any corny-ass way. Delt deploys a light instrumental touch and reverbed, willowy vocals to create songs that approach you like a watery mirage. For example, “Little Zombies” seems to have sprouted from the strangest bits of “Strawberry Fields Forever” and gone into an even deeper zone, the better to alter your brainwaves. If Delt can manifest the magic of his debut LP live, we’re in for a spectacular treat. With Fever the Ghost.
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