Saturday, March 23, 2013

Head east, young man.

I went to hear the Orchid Ensemble a week ago, not knowing what to expect. And I was blown away by the group. The instrumentation consists of a 12-string zither and a one string upright Chinese violin-like instrument, both centuries old instruments. And a percussionist. The group performs an incredible range of music, from traditional and modern Chinese songs, to music from various countries along the ancient Silk Road. The musicians explain the origins of all the songs they play and their love of the music is quite apparent. If you ever get the opportunity to see them, do yourself a favor and just do it!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Lawn Job

The ambient duo Grasscut was formed in the late 2000s in Brighton, England.The group is film composer Andrew Phillips and keyboardist/classically trained double bassist Marcus O'Dair. They've been compared to everyone from Hot Chip to Eluvium. I think they could fall under the banner of "folktronica."After signing with the well-known label Ninja Tune, they released the disc 1 Inch: 1/2 Mile in 2010 and a followup recording Unearth in 2012.