interesting post at mnml sggs where both MS dudes take turns to write their impressions of the new Monolake album Ghosts, more or less concurring in the harsh verdicts
chris: "it feels like the ghost of Monolake - you can see the shape, you recognise who it is, but there is no life. It just exists in an awkward netherworld somewhere between good and bad. But for me the defining characteristic of the album is ultimately how deeply boring it is."
PC: "Not dead, just lifeless..... I'm realising as I listen to this that music 'must' strike out in some direction (eg toward the heart), or remain in the inertness of its own directionless inertia."
the most interesting part of the double-review is the connection made between the fact that Robert Henke invented Ableton and a kind of stasis, or entropy, or something, entering into his own music almost immediately upon Ableton's entry onto the music-tech marketplace
Ableton and similar digi-audio programs do seem to have had an overall effect on electronic music production in the 2000s, there seems to be an inherent tendency within them that is hard (if not impossible) to resist, a tendency leaning towards what Matt Ingram calls "audio trickle"... a haemorrhaging away of thrust and drive, as a result of an infolding into recessive detail, a kind of minimalist ornamentalism... if you'd come up through the 90s, it was hard i think not to respond to the gradual onset of this vibe-lessness as a malaise.. the decadent phase following a period of vigor and advance...
when it comes to Monolake specifically, after those initial amazing 12 inches on Chain Reaction and the grey-metal-canister album, when i bought the subsequent Monolake CDs, they seemed to get progressively less involving .... less
memorable... to the point where i stopped bothering picking them up
i've listened to Ghosts once, it left no impression on me at all... but i'm going to give it a proper go on the Big System (not that big but certainly mighty c.f. this computer)
for now some flashbacks