THE AMBiENT PiNG http://www.theambientping.com Tuesdays @ HACiENDA - 794 Bathurst Street at Bloor (directly across from the Bathurst subway station) - Toronto Doors open at 9pm - 1st set at 9:30 - PayWhatYouCan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . This Tuesday July 26th - Planet Of The Loops Andrew Aldridge's quarterly series Planet Of The Loops lands at THE AMBiENT PiNG for an evening of creative loop-based improvisations. This edition will be a *must* for guitar fans as Toronto's two giants of looping guitar meet onstage for the first time since the late 90s. Aidan Baker is an ultra-prolific Toronto musician and writer making experimental/ambient/drone music using electric guitar, looping pedal, and various electronics to create music that ranges from minimal abstractions to maximal walls of enveloping sound. (rik, from the ping things CD table, will be bringing a wide selection of Aidan's works on CD and vinyl for this concert.) http://listen.to/aidan Andrew Aldridge is the founder of Planet Of The Loops & Sterling Moss and is an in-demand guitarist for artists like Wild Strawberries, Universal Honey, Little Man Hands, Swallows and many others. He's just returned from a European tour with Sarah Slean and will be in top form and ready for something completely different... Don't miss it! http://www.geocities.com/energymadeaudible/planet.html Between Sets CD - "Calling Down The Sky" by Robert Rich A live recording from a "living room concert" in Denver, Colorado on July 26, 2003 (precisely 2 years before tonight's Planet concert) during which ambient master (and looper) Rich states that everything "came into focus" as he created a completely improvised performance for this intimate audience. http://www.robertrich.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Coming Tuesday August 2nd - GeekWeekend Rob Hoare (sax, flute, laptop, words, dice) - http://www.robhoare.de Steven Sauve (synthesizer, laptop, dice) - http://www.karmafarm.ca . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ||: IN THE LOOP :|| by Luna Tek Tuesday, July 19th was a feast of "untouchable" music at the PiNG as the audience was treated to two different sets of music featuring the Theremin (played by moving your hands in the air near its antennae) as the central instrument. This was probably the earliest electronic instrument and was invented by Leon Theremin in the 1920s. More info at: http://www.theremin.info/ and http://www.thereminvox.com In the first set Gnostic Rocket (Steve Barber) played his own brand of experimental dub music. Across his downtempo grooves, he injected arcs of sound from his Theremin, which was channeled through a Korg X911 guitar synthesizer and then through a unique custom-designed device called the Springboard Dub, a "circuit-bent" analog delay unit in a charming toy piano casing with springs inside the keyboard area, which could be plucked or touched with probes to create short-circuit sound modifications. There's some photos and a detailed description at http://www.audible-ism.com/soundart/aconic/springboard.html the site of its creator, Arius Blaze. Gnostic Rocket's first show was a definite success with the PiNG audience, who were thoroughly chilled with his cool sounds and gently throbbing rhythms. Then electronic music veterans PHH!K took the stage to perform "Thereminstahs" taking a more abstract approach to their set. Each armed with a Theremin and other non-tactile instruments and controllers (like the Buchla "Lightning"), they soon had the sound system buzzing with sliding frequencies and sonic chaos with orchestral undercurrents. Luna last experienced PHH!K with special guests Christine Duncan on vocals and Rick Sacks on drums, so this night's core duo performance (Peter Hannan and Henry Kucharzyk) was a more challenging listening experience but was great fun to watch as their non-tactile techniques looked like conjuring tricks. Their set was very well-received and the duo obliged the audience with an encore. More info at: http://www.phhk.com *** iPOP PING magazine is shaping up to be a wide ranging, whimsical collection of ambient thoughts, experimental attitudes and innovative art. Articles, poetry and art submissions are still being welcomed. Luna Tek - firstname.lastname@example.org. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . rik maclean's *ping things* CD Reviews "Shadow Puppets" by the Machine in the Garden I've been a fan of the Machine in the Garden for some time now, having been introduced to them in the early days through a chance discovery on mp3.com. They've always impressed me with their sophistication, the elegance of their lyrics, their excellent musicianship. I hold them in very high regard and I look forward to each new release with a tremendous sense of anticipation. But nothing could have prepared me for the brilliance of their latest disc, "Shadow Puppets". Summer Bowman and Roger Frace of the Machine in the Garden have surpassed all previous expectations presented by earlier discs and created an epic, beautiful collection of songs that stand among the best I've heard so far this year. Opening with "This Silence", the tone is set with languid guitar arpegios and beguiling percussion leading into a swelled chorus that totally rocks. Summer's vocals sound sensual like honey on this one, drawing the listener deeper and deeper into a new plane of existence. Go ahead, step inside, you can thank her on the other side... Track two, "The Inside World", employs a steady kick drum beat and tension ridden guitar masterfully played underneath fully controlled vocals. Secrets, solopsisms and magic all rolled up into one. Brilliant. "Winter Fell" is next, a chilled piece of music that stands as one of my favorites on the disc. It's a slowly building track that draws from a slight intro into more intense emotional territory. Chilling, beautiful and all together wonderful. "Mantra" opens with a burbling, glitchy electronic intro, all feedback laden and processed noise, mad experiments in sound bubbling up from test tubes and beakers. Vocals take on a particularly automated quality here, a processed element that brings to mind images of black rainfall and Daryl Hannah using spray paint as makeup. This is a good thing by the way. Sheerly robotic in a most appealing fashion. "Suspend" uses fluid vocals over sparse keyboard work leading into guitar melodies and dramatic rhythm patterns. There's a theatricality to this piece, a really lovely cinematic quality that would lend itself well to a video. Ummmmmmm, Summer? Roger? Are you taking note here? kthxbye!!!1! The next song, "More Unto Fire Dreamt", is a slower paced, arpegio based track that reminds me of earlier work by the band. It's a lovely piece that allows Summer's vocals to stretch out and flow, a great showcase for her impressive talents. "Mother" is a cover of a song by Elaine Walker of ZIA, an incredibly powerful piece that captures the helplessness of illness. It's a powerful example of the way music can be used to vocalize emotions and sentiment, a very impressive work that stays with the listener long after its completion. "Spider's Bride" follows, a vaguely unsettling track filled with layered vocals and driving percussive patterns. Roger makes a brief appearance on back up vocals on this one, adding a dramatic quality that really complements the song. Vocals wrap around each other, intertwining, building in intensity. A lovely piece of string taut tension. "Illusions in Rain" features vocals and piano overtop a steady droning melody. Sparse, minimal, beautiful. Saying anything more would only take away from its wonders. "If Ever" opens with a lovely blend of acoustic guitar and ethereal vocals, a yearning need, reaching beyond oneself. As time progresses electric elements are added to accent the strength and desire in the piece and by the time the song is over, you want and need everything in just the same way. "Goodbye" closes the album with a steady synth line and swooning vocals. A lovely way to close a disc filled with beauty, wonder, secrets and mysteries. So what more is there to be said that hasn't already been mentioned? "Shadow Puppets" is a slick production, lyrically strong and mature, filled with great programming and a lovely blend of both organic and electronic elements. Whether you're a long time fan of the band or if you're looking for something new to check out, you owe it to yourself to investigate this disc. You'll be glad you did. rik maclean - email@example.com http://www.pingthings.com = ambient + electronic + chill things Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for updates on *all* the latest releases on sale at ping things . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE AMBiENT PiNG is a social sound/art event presenting live performances by Toronto's finest ambient, chillout, improv and experimental music artists plus performers from across the continent, every Tuesday evening at HACiENDA - 794 Bathurst Street at Bloor. http://www.theambientping.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Please forward this e-mail to any friends who may be interested in live ambient, chillout and experimental music performances or to any of your appropriate newsgroups. Thanks.