Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Dance With The Dead - Out Of Body

self release: 2013

Going all the way back with this album. Back to the beginning. Back to where it all started. Back to the alpha and the omega. Back to your wildest imagination! No, wait, too far back. What is this, an '80s movie advertisement tie-in? Of course not, but as with most things synthwave, you bet Dance With The Dead would love to score an '80s love-in flick, even a video game. Come to think of it, I'm surprised they haven't appeared on something of the sort yet. Could it just be that, *gasp*, there simply isn't any interest in the synthwave scene anymore?

Honestly, I could see it. Yeah, when movies like Turbo Kid and games like Hotline Miami 2 made a splash, it was just about all the internet could talk about for a hot minute there. Lord knows I fell sway to the hype along with everyone else. A scene with that much exposure needs more than hype to sustain itself though. Many artists were able to push forward with their careers, but without that all-important cross-media penetration, it can only go so far before being relegated to faddery. I can't help but feel the game Cyberpunk 2077 was a make-or-break moment for synthwave as a whole, and while it certainly delivered on the musical front, the game's infamously buggy launch kinda' curtailed whatever momentum that scene still had going for it. Unless something truly fresh emerges, methinks synthwave is now and forever relegated to pure niche interests.

Which has absolutely little to do with the debut album of Dance With The Dead, Out Of Body ...or does it? Okay, it really doesn't. Justin and Tony seem to have found themselves a winning formula of synthwave-meets-metal that should keep them active for as long as they wish to pursue this career. You probably wouldn't have guessed it based on this first effort though, Out Of Body showing clear signs of still finding their voices. Frankly, there's little on here that would distinguish them from most up-and-coming synthwavers of the early '10s (and boy were there ever a lot of 'em, believe you me).

Yeah, Tony's guitar solos are present, but far from the prominent feature they would become. In fact, of the fourteen tracks (plus an intro), only five of them have a proper shred-out moment, and only at the climax of a given track. If there's any guitar leads or rhythm support, it's quite buried in the mix, which wouldn't surprise me given that Out Of Body does have that unfortunate bricked mastering a lot of synthwave used early on.

So this may not be Dance With The Dead as they became, but there's still a lot of fun synthy tunes on hand, some brisk, others slowed, a few epic, others sombre, and even a little disco-dancey. Erm, maybe too much, the album dragging a little by the end. Nice of them to pare their LPs down some later on, but hey, growing pains.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Natural Life Essence - Organic Adventures

Neotantra: 2020

Ah, finally, an ambient artist debuting on Neotantra that isn't hopelessly obscure. Well, okay, Natural Life Essence probably is hopelessly obscure to a lot of folks out there, maybe even among ambient fans, but unlike some of the others I've covered from this label, he has a rather robust discography under his belt. One Juan Pablo Giacovino, the Argentinian local has been releasing music for close to a decade now, initially getting his start on German based CYAN, sharing digital domain with the likes of New Age Hippies, Musik Magier, The Mixing Chef, Fortadelis, Jaja (3), and Smooth (8). Perhaps more noteworthy is a short stint with psy label Ovnimoon Records, a lone EP and remix album to his name there.

That's just what Lord Discogs tells me he's done though. Follow a link to his Bandcamp page, however, and holy cow! Chap's been a busy lad, to say the least. To be fair, his Liquid Frog Records print isn't just all him, sharing projects with names like Kiphi, Yahgan, and Spiritual Fields. Still, there's a lot to check out there, all of it looking mighty tempting for a splurge. Space ambient, polar ambient, naturalistic ambient, meditative ambient, abstract ambient, long form ambient... just, so much ambient. What would I even begin to choose from this selection? What, buy the whole catalogue? Don't be daft, the whole thing is eighty-six items! It'd be ludicrous of me to just blind-buy that large of a Bandcamp page and I've already gone and done it, haven't I? *sigh* Well, I guess I needed something to keep generating content for this blog next year.

Anyhow, back to Juan's debut on Neotantra, Organic Adventures. Far as I can tell, three of the self-titled tracks come from an earlier release of N:L:E's, Organic Adventures (Those Other Lands). Which isn't all that uncommon when it comes to Neotantra releases, often serving as much a re-issue print for releases long forgotten or ultra-obscure. 1, 3 and 4 (Part II) are all quite lovely in that slightly psy-chill sort of way, never getting over-indulgent with effects and gimmickry, keeping things just melodic enough to hook you in while tones and drones drift along. Organic Adventures 8, which far as I can tell is an original for this release, is a slightly different outing, gentle washes of white noise dub effects and spoken dialog lending more of a spaced-out vibe.

And speaking of fresh music for a label debut, the first two tracks also appear new, and honestly kinda' clash with the original Organic Adventures sessions. Opener Polinizaton runs a lengthy twenty-one minutes, and is more of a shoegazey dronescape with field recordings of chirping birds. It's quite nice too, very relaxing, kinda' reminiscent of a Slaapwel Records session, and- oh, God! Why did those gentle pads suddenly cut out like that? Talk about sonic whiplash. Liberation (Flying Free) follows in similar fashion, though more emphasis on building upon an uplifting synth pad melody. No sudden cut-off? Now that's an Ace Track!

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Dr. Alban - One Love (The Album)

BMG: 1992

The man known on his Nigerian birth certificate as Alban Uzoma Nwapa led a fairly pedestrian life before becoming a pop star in Euroland. He had no ambition to score a clutch of dance hits in the early '90s, no desire to become fodder for Swedish tabloids. All he wanted was to practice dentistry! He had to pay the bills somehow while going to school though, so took up some DJing gigs at local clubs, even commanding the microphone during his sets on occasion. That was enough to catch the attention of another Swedish DJ by the name of Dag Krister Volle, who was looking to get into the production side of things. The two joined forces, the former performing as Dr. Alban, the latter taking on the nomme de plume Denniz PoP. Yes, that Denniz PoP, the Godfather of Contemporary Swedish Pop (Max Martin came up under his tutelage).

The result was one of the earliest and most famous of the eurodance stars – yes, more so than even Haddaway! Dr. Alban's success lay in fully embracing his ethnic roots, sing-rapping with a heavy afro-accent, all the while honouring his heritage with songs like Hello Afrika and Proud! (To Be Afrikan). Then he and Denniz topped it with an anthem for the ages: It's My Life.

Seriously, this song seems to age like fine wine. Already packing in the best of what italo house had to offer in rousing piano hooks and unashamed choir choruses, this is peak time eurodance, setting the template for what the genre would morph into in the coming years. Of course the Swedes would get there first.

What I find so resonate with it though is the song's message, especially in our modern clime's. It's a simple declaration from Dr. Alban, of letting him just be, without the intrusions of those who should mind their own business. Far as I know, it was written as a means of dealing with his newfound fame, but the doc' stumbled upon something that can apply to so much more, just... so much more. How hasn't this song become a rallying cry for the LGBTQ+ community these days, who's lives are nothing but intruded upon when they just want to live their lives unhindered? Or maybe it has, I just haven't heard about it.

Oh, right, the album, One Love. The titular single is more of a dancehall ditty, while Sing Hallelujah! was another big house hit off here. The rest mostly runs the gamut between hi-NRG dance cuts, and nods to Alban's musical influences of reggae and afro-dance. Oh, and the obligatory safe-sex song in Roll Down Di Rubber Man, because early '90s. Honestly, aside from those big singles, One Love really does show its age. It's well produced and remarkably diverse for a '92 record, but if this era does nothing for you, nor will these songs either.

Except that BASSLINE in No Coke, another timeless slice of reggae boogie! ...Erm, as performed by Swedes.

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Sync24 - Omnious

Leftfield Records/Sidereal: 2018/2019

Figured I may as well get this one too, complete the Sync24 collection and all. Yes, the entire four-album discography! I guess there's also that trio of EPs listed at Discogs, and an archive of Daniel's early ambient music called Ambient Archive [1996-2002]. Can't say I'm as interested in those efforts, though who knows how many sonic seeds lurk in those sessions that bore fruit in later Carbon Based Lifeform outings.

But yes, Omnious was indeed Mr. Segerstad's return to his solo project, often trotted out shortly after a CBL album dropped. My suspicion is there's only so many ideas he and Johannes can work into a project, leaving many off to the side for Daniel to make use of elsewhere. That ultra-minimalist ambient excursion titled Suspended Animation too sedate for World Of Sleepers? No problem, put on your own album! Dance Of The Droids just a little too chipper even for Interloper? No problem, put it on your own album! A Deep Sea Meditation Experience perhaps a bit overtly fairy-tale twee for anything released on CBL's new home of Blood Music (Blood Music!). Fret not, your fellow Ultimae Records alum Solar Fields has his own label now, where such music will fit right in!

Yeah, if the quirky cover-art with gathered characters from some indie platformer wasn't a giveaway, Omnious is a rather light-hearted affair. Ain't no wild TB-303 workouts as heard on the 'nighttime' follow-up Acidious, no sir. Well, okay, Bunnies On Mushrooms does feature some prominent acid as a lead, but it's sparse in use, casually bobbing along to a bouncy, psy-dub rhythm. Nothing ground-breaking where this sound is concerned, but a fun little knob-twiddler just the same. Lungs Full Of Clean Air is somewhat similar, though heavier in its use of ...side-chaining? Oh, wow, I thought that gimmick was long dead, but guess it can get trotted out for occasional service.

Mostly though, Omnious is all about tunes on the downbeat, when there's even a beat at all. Second track The Morning Before It All Happened gets on that cinematic ambient vibe that'll have all your vintage Ultimae triggers flaring – why is such a mellow tune at the number two spot though? The Tale Of The Lonely Apothecary gets widescreen with layered dub tones while a melancholy melody glides through, while Coffee Break In Orbit is exceptionally well-titled. Man, nothing but casual reflection while sipping a cuppa' over Callisto.

The final two tracks - That Boring Autumn Day and Wise Whispers In The Wind - really reach down through your aorta, tugging at the heartstrings with their tranquil, graceful melodies. It really makes you wonder why Daniel didn't make use of these for that CBL debut on Blood Music (B-L-O-O-D Music!!), at least until you remember what that label's name is.

Unfortunately, like Acidious, Omnious runs all too short at just eight tracks long, none breaching the six-and-a-half minute mark. Boy, could some of these use an extended remix or two.

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Lucette Bourdin - Oceanic Space

Dark Duck Recordings/Fantasy Enhancing: 2006/2021

We're not quite done with Ms. Bourdin just yet. I mean, obviously not, since I'm only half-way through a twenty CD box-set, but in this recent clutch of reviews, she's taken up quite the bundle of them, the sixth out of the last ten. Fret not, folks, for this will be it for a while now, at least until we hit the 'R's ...I think. To be honest, I keep forgetting just how many there are. Seems every time I figure there's a gap, *boop*, suddenly, another Lucette album.

That certainly happened here, Oceanic Space. To be fair, it is something of a 'blink and you'll miss it' outing. There's only three tracks, making it Ms. Bourdin's shortest album in that regard. However, they're lo-o-ong tracks, Space taking up over twenty-five minutes of your time, and Ocean a whopping twenty-eight and a half minutes. Opener The Beginning, by comparison, runs a 'brisk' nine minutes, and believe me, does it breeze on by. How weird that our sense of passing time can do that, eh?

But hey, just because some ambient music pushes the half-hour mark doesn't mean nothing happens. Plenty of sonic twists and turns can occur in such an excursion, right? Sure, if that's the sort of ambient you're composing for said piece. As should be abundantly clear by now though, Lucette generally engages with the more meditative, droning sort of ambient. And while I've heard her take some interesting paths in such lengthy compositions, those have mostly come from later albums, wherein she's had time to hone her musical craft. According to the order of which these CDs come in her retrospective box-set, Oceanic Space is her second LP, and, well, you can kinda' hear it too.

The Beginning is a nice enough opener, spacey synths gliding along sine waves in such a manner that treads the line between classic ambient and New Age music. There definitely is a bit of the ol' Fax+ vibe to this one, so maybe that association germinated with fans of Namlook's label started much earlier than I suspected. And again, I'm surprised that, despite its nine-minute run-time, it seemingly plays out in quick fashion. Maybe my brain just wanted it to go on for longer. The fade-out certainly hints at something more on the horizon, subtly tugged away just as you're getting warmed to it.

Space gently sets off with tranquil pad work, gradually layering more tones as the piece progresses. Once the elements are all in play, however, it doesn't really go anywhere, Lucette content in letting things play out as her muse sees fit. Again-again, this would be fine for a shorter piece – say, a dozen minutes or so – but at nearly half an hour, tends to slip into background noodling for its own sake. Same goes for Ocean, an even subtler piece in its use in harmonic tones. It's fine for ambient of this nature, but doesn't do much to stand out from an overcrowded field either.

Friday, November 11, 2022

Sykonee Surveys Discographies While "Sportsing": ATB

The turn of the century saw a lot of big, gimmick anthems from seemingly fly-by-night producers. DJ Jean with The Launch (bad horns). Zombie Nation with Kernkraft 400 ("whoah-oh-oh" chant). Darude with Sandstorm (Fruity Loops acid). Mario Piu with Communication (that f'n phone). Got'dang Hamsterdance! Yeah, some of these acts parlayed their insta-fame into some short term success, but few ever did much of note after.

At the time, you'd be forgiven thinking André Tanneberger would go the same route, his ATB alias forever tied to 9PM (Til I Come) (the slide-guitar anthem). And while I'm sure a large chunk of clubland still regards him as such, he's mananaged a fairly sustained career since, regularily among the top jocks billed at many a festival for two decades now. Not only that, but he's maintained a rather robust discography in that time. Well heck, I actually did like his two early anthems in 9PM and Don't Stop!. Maybe there's something to this man's muse that gave him a career more sustainable than all the other acts he got lumped among so early on. I wager that's worth a Discography Dive, so let's check it out.

Well, that took longer than expected. I had no idea André had released so many double-LPs. Can't say I came away overly satisfied with this one, but there were very few moments that had me cringing either. Solidly middle-of-the-road dance pop for the most part, with enough interesting chill-out moments to keep me engaged for the long haul. I think, though, I need to hear something a little more dynamic for my next Discography Dive. Maybe it's about time I got Shpongled...?

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Iempamo - ...Now What?

Lemony Records: 2021

I feel bad for Iempamo. Oh, not specifically for the life she's had, though as a trans individual in the state of Kentucky, I can't imagine it being terribly easy. No, I'm talking about with regards to this review. It was requested via Patreon, but not via the 'Skip The Queue' tier, so the CD sat in the regular alphabetical stack like everything else. Unfortunately, the last time I dealt with 'N' albums was July ...of 2021! Not that ...Now What? has been waiting that long, but it has been over a year since I received this. Matters weren't helped that I also grabbed not one, not two, but three full discographies of artists in that time too, substantially inflating the length of my alphabetical queue. The fact I dealt with an 'N-titled' release from each of these artists right before Iempamo's (hell, four from one!), I wouldn't blame her for feeling a little bit trolled over this.

Anyhow, Iempamo's kept up a modest music pastime these last few years, releasing some dozen items through her own Lemony Records label, self-described as “sour and abstract electronica”. ...Now What? was the latest of these releases on her Bandcamp, and looks to have remained as such since. She freely admits to going through depressive states in our recent bought of Strange Days, music serving as an outlet like so many artists old and new. ...Now What? was apparently crafted as something of a reconciliation, coming out the other side maybe not so worse for the wear, but nor as hopeless as what was once thought possible. Hey, if even The Bug couldn't help himself succumbing to such trepidation in Fire, what hope any of us? Iempamo ain't sayin' it's all hopeless – after all, she got out of it – but what does one do in the aftermath? I don't know about any of you, but me, I go swimming a lot! Ain't no way I'm taking open pools for granted anymore, nosiree.

Anyhow, this all comes off as dressing to hang a concept off for a round of twee-leaning IDM works. Ol' school Aphex Twin and the like are definitely an inspiration, but then what isn't in this lane of music genres? I'm hearing more a connection to the output of Suction Records, who for sure occupy their own ambient-electro-pop lane as well, though Iempamo's sound goes a little more crunchy than theirs.

Some tracks, like opener What Now...?, Uncertain, and Hustle, bring heftier beats for sure. Mostly though, we're in that pitter-skittery, digital scratchy style of rhythms, often getting quite frenetic by track's end (Trans gets especially noisy).

Regardless, this album's strengths are in its melodies. If you like yourself some charming, IDM-pop jangles, you'll dig Iempamo's go with 'em. Again, I'm reminded of acts like Solvent or Skanfrom, music where you can imagine some robot coming to terms with weird, human concepts like positive emotions. Seems appropriate for someone coming out of a depression.

Sunday, November 6, 2022

Lucette Bourdin - Nordic Waves Vol. 4: Autumn

Dark Duck Records/Fantasy Enhancing: 2012/2021

Seriously now, is there any season more pointless to The North than autumn? Yeah, I get that not all of the Nordic regions are True North, the good ol' Atlantic Gulf Stream providing temperate climates to latitudes not typically suited for it. But indulge me here a moment (as if you're not already doing so by reading my thoughts about music on a blog): what do you typically think of when it comes to fall?

The cooling temperatures, the changing colour of leaves, the shedding of said leaves, the harvesting of fruits and vegetables before the big freeze, and all that, right? None of which is applicable to tundra, and barely so even in taiga! Like, that temperature change is pretty abrupt, going from summer to winter almost in an instant. And those mosses and lichens sure ain't gonna' do anything fancy in the back end of the calendar year, no sir, much less in need of harvesting. Migratory animals are about the only thing I can think of associating autumn with The North.

Not that Lucette was unable to conjure up some music feeding off traditional imagery of fall in temperate clime's. I just think it would have made for an interesting, and even hilarious, bit of thematic consistency to make Nordic Waves Vol. 4: Autumn basically an EP. Y'know, a short excursion for a season that doesn't have much impact in the region as we know it. Heck, maybe even do the same for Vol. 2: Spring. And while we're at it, make Vol. 1: Winter a double-LP! Vol. 2: Summer can stay a standard album length though. We don't need anymore non-setting sunlight than we already have around the Arctic Circle.

Actually, I need to backtrack that a bit. After listening through Nordic Waves Vol. 4: Autumn, I'm not so sure Lucette was able to find much inspiration from the Phantom Season. Yeah, there's titles like Caramel-Colored Trees, The Smell Of Fallen Leaves, and First Frost, but I don't get the same sense of sonic imagery with the music on hand as with the previous volumes. Don't get me wrong, this is still a very lovely collection of moody, atmospheric ambient drone, but I feel like these pieces could have almost anything associated with them and sound just as fine. Heck, maybe even go the extra, classic-ambient step of pure abstraction, no need for a season's themes.

Take Shower Of Stars, a piece of shimmering synths and gliding pads. Beautiful, yes. Invoking autumn, not really. Or Pale Sun, as moody an ambient composition as we've yet heard in this series, but again, no feelings of fall coming to mind with it.

It's a funny one, this final entrant in Ms. Bourdin's Nordic Waves series. Musically, I actually kinda' like it the most, even if it almost have nothing to do with the season it's supposed to be inspired by. Maybe it needed to go spookier, tap into that Halloween vibe. Can't think about autumn without that day.

Friday, November 4, 2022

Lucette Bourdin - Nordic Waves Vol. 3: Summer

Dark Duck Records/Fantasy Enhancing: 2012/2021

Isn't it funny how when we think of Nordic clime's, we never think about the summer months? Heck, any Far North region for that matter. Our perpetual image of the world above the 60th Parallel is always one of ice and cold, and fair enough, it's that even when the sun hangs over the sky for over twenty hours a day (note: may no longer be valid in the near future from whence this was written).

But in terms of inspiration, it's the frigid winter months that get the most nods. Whether the melancholic reflection one does when wanting to hibernate, or challenging one's sense of self against inhospitable dark ambient tundra desolation, it's the long dark that gets the most rep'. Heck, even Ms. Bourdin wasn't immune to it, kicking off her Nordic Waves series with Winter. Summer, for all intents, gets the shaft in this regard, despite 'lasting' just as long as winter.

And well it should, as summer that far north actually kinda' sucks. Maybe not as much in Nordic regions, since they do benefit from some good propah' summer weather thanks to the Atlantic Gulf Stream, but that eternal sunshine, man. Just... never going away. It sets, but it's still light out, twilight lingering well past midnight. How can one get a good, recharging sleep when the sun wont set? Yeah, the winter may be bitter cold and dark, but at least you can sleep it off, recoup for another day. Folks have known to go crazy over summer insomnia, yo'!

Let's not dwell on that (for now...). Instead, Lucette opens Nordic Waves Vol. 3: Summer with Reindeer Frolic, a relatively light, airy piece of classical ambient with dancing electronics and glistening synth tones. It honestly feels more... wintery? Sorry, I just have a hard time picturing reindeer under a hot summer sun. Follow-up Midsummer Bonfire does a little dance with its shimmery, pulsing synths, which I suppose captures the essence of flickering flames nicely, but I dunno'. Ms. Bourdin's typical choice of synths have long had something of a cool, icy sheen to them, and that doesn't change much here either. I'm just not feeling Summer out of these tracks. Even Undulating Grasses, another fine pieces of 'dancing ambient', has me thinking springtime awakening over anything hot and humid.

As I said though, the idea of 'summer' in the far north has always been a little skewy, and perhaps that's the vibe Lucette felt as well. Light Waves, Twilight, and especially Heat Stroke mostly do the contemplative ambient drone tone thing, the latter of which stretching for nearly a dozen minutes in length. Even The Engine Of Nature, comparatively light-hearted with some piano, guitar, and percussion action, can't help but contain an ominous synth drone in support. It's almost as if Lucette can't wait for summer to be done. And as if to sell that perspective, final track August Buzz sounding positively uplifting and hopeful in its ambient tones. Yay, the season's almost done!

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Lucette Bourdin - Nordic Waves Vol. 2: Spring

Dark Duck Records/Fantasy Enhancing: 2012/2021

Anyone else feel weird about seeing spring sitting at the second position of a seasonal series? I get why it's Vol. 2 of Ms. Bourdin's Nordic Waves run of albums, what with the whole thing kicking off on Winter and all. Spring had to follow, because spring always follows winter. Okay, maybe not on a planet like Venus, where its rotation is in reverse, so I guess winter would follow spring there. That's not a good example though, Venus' whole seasonal deal about as messed up as any planet can get – even the rolling ice giant Uranus has regular seasons, extreme though they may be.

Anyhow, what I'm getting at is we just assume spring would be the kick-off for any conceptual seasonal series, because of astrology or something. I find it rather nifty and, dare I say, daring, for Lucette to buck convention like this and shuffle spring over onto Vol. 2 of Nordic Waves. Take that, attention hog Aries!

Vol. 1: Winter ended on something of an upbeat tick, the subtly percolating synths of The One Hundredth Name Of Snow hinting at a world stirring from hibernation. Well, Vol. 2: Spring doesn't waste time in letting you know life is back to its busy, shining self, opener Return Of The Snow Goose all bright, shining synths harking more to the realms of modern classical synth composers than the usual Lucette ambient fare. Oh, and honking geese fly above on occasion, because that's just what I needed: reminders of the Canadian Cobra Chicken. I thought this was relaxing music!

You know what else spring is known for? Showers! ...or unrelenting rain, if you're in coastal regions like Norway and British Columbia. Nice of Ms. Bourdin to craft a track titled as such, though this one is a bit melancholic with its use of violin. Compared to the general moodiness of follow-up Anvil-Head Cloud, however, Unrelenting Rain is downright chipper. And speaking of geography shared by the Nordic regions and the Pacific Northwest, here's the gentle ambience and mysterious tones of Fjords, followed upon by more tranquility and subtle rhythms of Where The Forest Meets The Shoreline. We certain this hasn't turned into a Silent Season outing now?

That's all well and good if you're down for the fjord-pjorn (*cough*), but how about some propah' spring-time sonics? Lucette does spend some tracks bringing us from the ebb of March into the dawn of April, A Month-Long Sunrise doing that ambient drone thing of tones ever morphing into brighter timbre. Crossing The Equinox, meanwhile, gets more on that classic synth vibe, with rhythmic pulses and even pitch shifts. And what spring season is complete without the flooding of alpine meltwater, as captured by White Water – Calm Water, as peppy a tune as we've yet heard out of these Nordic Waves sessions? Not sure how The March Of The Trolls fits in with everything though. Probably Norwegian folklore, such critters forced into retreat from the increased sunlight, lest they turn to stone?

Things I've Talked About

...txt 10 Records 16 Bit Lolita's 1963 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2 Play Records 2 Unlimited 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 20xx Update 2562 3 Loop Music 302 Acid 36 3FORCE 3six Recordings 4AD 6 x 6 Records 75 Ark 7L & Esoteric 808 State A Perfect Circle A Positive Life A-Wave a.r.t.less A&M Records A&R Records Abandoned Communities Abasi Above and Beyond abstract Ace Trace Ace Tracks Playlists Ace Ventura acid acid house acid jazz acid techno acoustic Acroplane Recordings Adam Ellis Adam Freeland Adham Shaikh ADNY Adrian Younge adult contemporary Advanced UFO Phantom Aegri Somnia AEI Music Aes Dana Afrika Bambaataa Afro-house Afterhours Agoria Aidan Casserly Aira Mitsuki Airwaves Ajana Records Ajna AK1200 Akshan album Aldrin Alex Smoke Alex Theory Alice In Chains Alien Community Alien Project Alio Die All Saints Alphabet Zoo Alphaxone Altar Records Alter Ego alternative rock Alucidnation Ambelion Ambidextrous ambient ambient dub ambient techno Ambient World Ambientium Ametsub Amon Amarth Amon Tobin Amplexus Anabolic Frolic Anatolya Andrea Parker Andrew Heath Androcell Anduin Andy C anecdotes Aniplex Anjunabeats Annibale Records Anodize Another Fine Day Antendex anthem house Anthony Paul Kerby Anthony Rother Anti-Social Network Anzio Green Aoide Aphasia Records Aphex Twin Apócrýphos Apollo Apollo 440 Apple Records April Records Aqua Aquarellist Aquascape Aquasky Aquila Arcade Architects Of Existence Archives Arcturus arena rock Arista Armada Armin van Buuren Arpatle Arts & Crafts ASC Ashtech Asia Asian Dub Foundation Astral Engineering Astral Projection Astral Waves Astralwerks AstroPilot AstroPilot Music Asura Asylum Records ATB ATCO Records Atlantic Atlantis atmospheric jungle Atom Heart Atomic Hooligan Atomine Elektrine Atrium Carceri Attic Attoya Audion AuroraX Autechre Autistici Autumn Of Communion Auxilary Auxiliary Avantgarde Avatar Records Aveparthe Avicii Axiom Axs Axtone Records Aythar B.G. The Prince Of Rap B°TONG B12 Babygrande Balance Balanced Records Balearic ballad Banco de Gaia Bandulu Barker & Baumecker Battle Axe Records battle-rap Bauri Beastie Boys Beat Buzz Records Beat Pharmacy Beatbox Machinery Beats & Pieces bebop Beck Bedouin Soundclash Bedrock Records Beechwood Music Benny Benassi Bent Benz Street US Berlin-School Beto Narme Beyond bhangra Bicep big beat Big Boi Big Dada Recordings Big L Big Life Bill Hamel Bill Laswell BIlly Idol BineMusic BioMetal Biophon Records Biosphere Bipolar Music BKS Black Hole Recordings black metal black rebel motorcycle club Black Swan Sounds Blanco Y Negro Blasterjaxx Blend Blood Music Blow Up Blue Amazon Blue Öyster Cult blues blues rock Bluescreen Bluetech BMG Boards Of Canada Bob Dylan Bob Marley Bobina Bogdan Raczynzki Bombay Records Bone Thugs-N-Harmony Boney M Bong Load Records Bonobo Bonzai Boogie Down Productions Booka Shade Botchit & Scarper Bows Boxed Boys Noize Boysnoize Records BPitch Control braindance Brandt Brauer Frick Brasil & The Gallowbrothers Band breakbeats breakcore breaks Brian Eno Brian Wilson Brick Records Britpop Brodinski broken beat Brooklyn Music Ltd Bryan Adams BT Bubble Buffalo Springfield Bulk Recordings Burial Burned CDs Bursak Records Bush Busta Rhymes Buttertones C.I.A. 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