VARIOUS ARTISTS: THE BREATH OF FORGOTTEN PLACES
CDR: Elvis Coffee Records ECR08 [2005]
Ltd x 75


Jebus: Hole In The Wall
Directive 4: Neijfk 1
Green End Listening Station: DD2
Swn: Exponent 13132
Ulysses Girelle: Sugarcoated
The Buff Monkey Ensemble: Phoenix Ninety Six
Psychic Space Invasion: Drowning In Heavy Water

Elvis Coffee Records are that very rare breed. A label started up for the sole purpose of releasing their own music they now actively release any recordings that they feel are interesting no matter what that musical genre might be. Though initially predominately concerned with the burgeoning South Wales electronic / ambient / experimental scene they quite happily have thrown their doors open to all comers. Nothing rare in that you might say. What if I told you that they release these recordings to usually 50 - 75 copies only apiece. Again…nothing new there. Ah…but what if I told you that these recordings are FREE!! All you need is to pay for the postage. A rare breed indeed.

Last chance. Don’t give up. Read all the ECR reviews then give yourself a pat on the back.

ECR have kindly sent along four of their latest releases for review, their back catalogue unsurprisingly having sold out ages ago, so first up is ECR 08 which fittingly is a compilation featuring Jerbus, Directive 4, Green End Listening Station, Swn, Ulysses Girelle, The Buff Monkey Ensemble and Psychic Space Invasion. They may be big in South Wales but I‘ve never heard of any of the fuckers until now. "The Breath of Forgotten Places" showcases the talent (or lack of, depending on how generous you’re feeling) of these very diverse acts and equally diverse music. Like all similar compilations there’s a certain hit / miss ratio to the tracks for which only an individual can decide. What’s good for the goose isn’t necessarily good for the gander. So with the weight of expectation resting firmly on my shoulders it pains me to say that the tracks by Green End Listening Station (heavily strummed and treated guitar bollocks) and The Buff Monkey Ensemble (similar guitar treated voice added electronic pish) didn’t quite cut the mustard. To everyone else…come on down. I felt a great empathy towards Jebus (experimental glitches with dark electronic ambience), Directive 4 (sound manipulation taken to extremes), Swn (melodic sound sculpture), Ulysses Girelle (frazzled mellow electronics) and lastly Psychic Space Invasion (saving the best for last with a heavily induced textured electronic pulse n drone n voice piece ). As I said…a mixed bag which overall generally works. After all you may, if you decide to tip your toes in these murky waters, totally agree / disagree with my own personal favourite choices. Though to quibble over something that is basically FREE would be extremely harsh and undeserving.

ANM

[Elvis Coffee Records]

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