Stakker Humanoid - How 25 years ago Future Sound of London brought Acid House to the mainstream.
Muslimgauze was the sound of an angry Middle East, a prolific source of music dark, spacious and smothering. Tension was a constant theme not only in the music but in the packaging. (For example, Betrayal shows the hands of Yassir Arafat and Yitzak Rabin, and guns, knives, and news photos of an Arab world at war were a common motif in titles and sleeve art.) However, the music wasn't the usual agitprop fare: Music meant to rile a public to a cause isn't normally pigeonholed as ambient, electronica or musique concrete. But the band, hidden from public view, was rumored to donate proceeds to Palestinian terrorists, and that they were eventually silenced by Mossad. Despite the prodigious output -- issuing almost a hundred EPs and albums between 1983 and 1998, over a hundred more since -- limited distribution and perpetual obscurity ensured the rumors were easier to find than the music. While the facts about Muslimgauze have little in common with the fictions, they are, if anything, stranger... [more inside]
The Orb, known as one of the principal architects of ambient house, have receded into relative obscurity since the popular heyday of the electronic music movement in the US. Despite changes in the lineup - the group now consists of a duo featuring founding member Dr (Duncan Robert) Alex Paterson and Thomas Fehlmann. Paterson's DJ sets are the stuff of legend and I was pleased as punch that they've just put together a podcast (actually a 50.8mb .zip file containing an mp3) that's available through their minimal website.
Window Exchange, Snowflake Series. Ambient techno with nice imargy for your enjoyment.