It is with much regret that I must put The Panegyric Monkey on pretty much permanent hiatus – what with work, kids and wedding preps I cannot give it the amount of attention I would like. It’s been a blast!!

Peace, Love and music


Not a lot of time today – being dragged around shops – deep joy! So here are some vids of songs/bands that I dug in the 80s/90s.


Perc – The Power And The Glory [Perc Trax]


2 words – Freakin’ Awesome!!

I would like to leave it at that but…..

Perc’s 2012 ‘Wicker and Steel‘ still on heavy rotation at chez monkey, and so I was more than a little trepidacious about listening to the new one in case it didn’t live up to it’s predecessor. I needn’t have worried!!!

It’s a devasting album, with a more visceral and industrial feel than the first and, at times, an overtly political stance; ‘David and George‘ is the warped soundtrack to a UK being brought to it’s knees by the cackling eponymous duo (Cameron and Osbourne, the evil products of an elitist, class driven and antiquated public school system).

There are two, disparate, guest vocalists on the album – Dan Chandler from noiseniks Dethscalator struggles to get his gutteral screams heard over the waves of synths and bass of ‘Rotting Sound‘ while Nik Void from post-industrial outfit, and darlings of the cognescenti, Factory Floor sounds icily calm and controlled on ‘Speek‘ , possibly the most introverted track here.

Of the remaining tracks, standouts are ‘Lurch‘ with it’s intoxicated distorted bass, and ‘Dumpster‘.

The album is constantly surprising, constantly shifting in tempo and atmosphere (from the warehouse-y ‘Take your body off‘ to the almost ambient ‘The Living End‘) – those expecting a dancefloor filler will be sorely disappointed, but those looking for an absorbing, satisfying aural experience will be in hogs heaven!

I’m finding it hard to imagine this album NOT being top of my electronica albums come the end of the year (but then, I’ve yet to hear the new Lucy album!)


Soundtrack Mix


When I started this blog I was determined NOT to post/share albums etc (a firm believer in supporting the artists). I have nothing against bloggers who do this, but just not my thing! However, I thought I would share this mix I made for the car, to liven up my daily commute.

It is synth/moog heavy, with tasty tracks from Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, John Carpenter and Walter/Wendy Carlos, some prog from Goblin, some neoclassical from Philip Glass, more contemporary tunes from Cabaret Voltaire and Severed Heads and some more experimental electronic stuff from Laurie Speigel (from The Hunger Games soundtrack – I kid you not!). It ends with some freaky folk from The Wicker Man.


1. Vangelis – Main Theme (from Bladerunner)

2. John Carpenter – Main Title (from Assault On Precinct 13)

3. Cabaret Voltaire – Hallucination Sequence – DTs – Cold Turkey (from Johnny Yesno)

4. Severed Heads – Pour Chiens Moyens (from The Illustrated Family Doctor)

5. Goblin – Suspiria (from Suspiria)

6. Popol Vuh – Aquirre (from Aquirre, Wrath Of God)

7. Roy Budd – Get Carter Main Theme [Carter Takes A Train] (from Get Carter)

8. Laurie Speigel – Sediment (from The Hunger Games)

9. David Bowie – Warszawa (from Christianna F)

10. Tangerine Dream – Incarnation [Molasar’s Theme] (from The Keep)

11. Walter Carlos – Theme From A Clockwork Orange (from A Clockwork Orange)

12. Philip Glass – Koyaanisqatsi (from Koyaanisqatsi)

13. Carmine Coppola – Finale (from Apocalypse Now)

14. Paul Giovanni (arr.) – Festival / Mirie It Is / Sumer Is A-Cumen In (from The Wicker Man)

It can be downloaded here.


Boards Of Canada – Geogaddi [WARP]



Whilst I wait for my new purchases to arrive I thought I would revisit an old fave.

Boards Of Canada are two Scottish brothers, Mike Sandison and Marcus Eoin, who started playing around with sound and technology at a very early age. Their first album as BOC was ‘Music Has the Right to Children’ released in 1998 and made several ‘Best Of’ lists for that year. They soon became an essential part of an extremely impressive WARP roster (Autechre, Seefeel etc)

Geogaddi was their second studio album, and took them in a much darker direction, in fact Sandison himself described it as “a record for some sort of trial-by-fire, a claustrophobic, twisting journey that takes you into some pretty dark experiences before you reach the open air again.” It has the same nostalgic, childhood driven feel to ‘Music Has the Right to Children’ , but has the distinct feel that there is something quite disturbing beneath it all – it is the musical equivalent to repressed memories.

The gentle, countryside feel of the first is replaced by claustrophobia and paranoia; sampled vocals of a drowning woman (“The Devil Is In The Details”) replace the air of warmth and memory. It is the use of eerie samples and simple rhythms that produce a ethereal and sometimes disturbing listen.

This album was ‘hauntology’ before ‘hauntology’ became a big thing in the 00’s and I would imagine that the artists on Ghost Box and Mordant Music etc would hold this album up as a distinct influence.



Klaus Schulze – Moondawn


Found this lil’ beauty in a local charity shop over the weekend, and what a find it is!

Schulze was one of the founding members of both Ash Ra Tempel and Tangerine Dream, but left both groups after just one album. It’s easy to hear the influences of both bands in his subsequent solo work (stretching to over 60 albums, some under his ‘psuedonym’ Richard Wahnfried, and a series of collaborations with king of ambient Pete Namlook).

Moondawn was Schulze’s sixth LP, released in 1976, and is regarded as many as his greatest, and a classic of german electronica (I’m trying really hard not to use the term Krautrock!). It is his first album in which he uses a Moog.

The album has only 2 tracks – Side 1 is ‘Floating’ (27.15 mins long) and side 2 ‘Mindphaser’ (25.22). Floating is, as it’s title suggests, floating rhythmic experience. It starts with an exotic spoken Arabian prayer leading into ambient swathes of synthetic strings and tolling bells which morph into  sequencer pulses. This is accompanied by Harold Grosskopf’s drumming.  The piece builds in intensity and, by the end, Schulze and Grosskopf are in full flow.

Mindphaser is a more robust beast, beginning  with the crashing of waves leading to the sound of  string-synths with a woodwind lead overlaid. For 10 minutes or so it appears all very serene until it transforms into full on space rock with Grosskopf’s drums and Schulze’s electric organ, and some improv work on his MiniMoog.

Schulze was panned in his time, but the way he utilised the most contempory technology can still stand alongside many modern electronica artists.


All in all, not bad for 50p!!

“The New Sound Of Music” [1979 BBC Documentary]

Whilst trawling the internet a while ago I stumbled upon this old documentary from the BBC from 1979 (presented by Michael Rodd – people of a certain age will remember him from ‘Screen Test’ and ‘Tomorrow’s World’ – a bit of a precursor to Alan Partridge!).

It’s a fascinating watch, it charts the history of music technology, taking in everything from the Pianola to tape splicing, the development of the synth and even scratching! It takes in everything  from Musique Concrete to Pick Floyd.

It seems very very dated now obviously, when the world and his wife can produce music (of variable quality!) on a laptop, but as a piece of cultural history it’s ace. Check it out.

I’ve put all parts below for your watching pleasure and delight:

Jonathan Fitoussi – Polaris [Live]: Pan European Recording



Another Saturday night purchase (why do I always spend more at the weekend when I DON’T go out?!). This is a sublime piece of music recorded in concert October 27, 2011 at  La Blanchisserie , Boulogne Billancourt, France.

Fitoussi is a Parisian sound artist firmly entrenched in the minimalist school of composing.His recent works,and I quote from his website, “have explored a fusion of electronic 
and acoustic sounds with melodic textures, colors and emotions.” His ‘day job’ is as anAudio Restoration Engineer at Institut National de l’Audiovisuel.

It would be very easy, and very, very lazy, to call this record ‘ambient’ but this is a pure and clean example of minimalist composing, creating evocative soundscapes and textures. He is apparently inspired by Terry Riley (if you are not au fait with Riley’s work, check out A Rainbow in Curved Air from 1969) , and this shows, the same shimmering rays of light shining through repetitive melodies and analogue manipulation. There are hints of Komische: mid seventies Tangerine Dream, a touch of Faust and Popol Vuh.

I ordered the beautiful looking vinyl via the Pan European Recording Bandcamp page (has a stream to listen to the tracks), and while the vinyl won’t be with me for a week or so, the price included a download and so I sat in a darkened room in a house that had gone to bed and it was bliss!!