Best of Dream Catalogue, 2814-2815

Dream Catalogue has quickly become one of my favorite music labels. Their aesthetic is a utopian ideal for tomorrow’s world. The music they release is futuristic, wrapped in a warm emotional embrace, full of nostalgia and hope. Everything I’ve heard is, naturally, painted with a deeply dreamlike palette. Edges are blurred, time vanishes, and the listener becomes unmoored from tactile reality.

You might recognize the colors of the logo from a certain album that landed on my Best of 2015 list. It’s another sign of the unified aesthetic Dream Catalogue has been laying out for over two years now. 2814’s 新しい日の誕生 (Birth of a New Day) was easily the biggest surprise for me in the past year, sending me tumbling down the rabbit hole that is the label’s roster.

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To celebrate their second anniversary as a groundbreaking, epoch-defining label, Dream Catalogue just released this 65 minute collection of tunes from their best artists, curated for a perfect sense of flow and pace. As someone moderately familiar with the copious output of this label, it’s a fantastic overview. This works as both a handy collage and incredible introduction for newcomers. One listen, and you’ll be immersed in this unique aesthetic, thirsty for more.

If you’re not already familiar, be prepared to have artists like t e l e p a t h テレパシー能力者, Nmesh, HKE, Death’s Dynamic Shroud.wmv, and Chungking Mansions floating in your brain for days. It’s pure bliss, and you won’t want to ever go back to life before listening.

Even cooler, the label is running a competition with some pretty awesome prizes available only to people who purchase the CD edition. I’ve included all details below the break.

Buy the album on the Dream Catalogue Bandcamp page or listen to the entire set streaming right here:

As the final second of the compilation fades, these words echo:

You’re dreaming.

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Best of 2015: 25 More Great Albums

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I hear a lot of great music almost every day, and it really adds up. I might not be rich or famous, but my life is wealthy with incredible music. I want to make everyone else as wealthy, too. Every single year, there are so many great albums that I’d recommend anyone, far more than I’d feel comfortable putting on a top ten list.

So here we are, my “honorable mention” list of 2015 albums. Every one of these albums are worth your time. Unlike my top list, they appear in the order that I heard them.

After you’ve checked this out, make sure to see the 17 Best Albums of 2015 here.

Read on to hear the best of the rest of 2015:

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Oneohtrix Point Never – Garden Of Delete

Oneohtrix Point Never has returned with a massive new album you can call G.O.D. It peels up the corner tiles of a thousand realities over 45 minutes, blooming micro-worlds of sound and immediately dissolving in head-on collisions.

For the first time in years, OPN – real name Daniel Lopatin – hasn’t completely restructured his sound, yet I’m feeling the same sense of dizzying vertigo that he’s made a career out of conjuring. In a real sense, the strongest component of his appeal has always been that daring sense of surprise, the act of an artist venturing over the edge of the known music world and bringing back sounds that I’ve never even anticipated, much less heard. More than a style, it’s an idea, a philosophy. In the wrong hands, it can become a cheap trick. This is something far more substantial.

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Flying Saucer Attack – Instrumentals 2015

So suddenly Flying Saucer Attack appears again, nearly 15 years after last contact, with a set of unnamed instrumentals. It’s gorgeous, droning guitar music that makes no apologies for its obliqueness and doesn’t try to reach out to the uninitiated.

This slab of ashen dream is ready and waiting for anyone interested.

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Oneohtrix Point Never will release his Magnetic Rose score on Record Store Day

So, this is more of a news item than music that I’m sharing, but I’m too excited to keep it to myself.

Last October, Oneohtrix Point Never (aka Daniel Lopatin) recorded a brand new score for the astonishing 1995 anime film Magnetic Rose, premiering it live along with the film itself at a live event in the UK. I obviously and regrettably did not attend. However, good news is afoot!

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Today Lopatin announced that he will be releasing a follow-up to last year’s Commissions I 12″ on Record Store Day, surprisingly titled Commissions II. The new release features selections of his suite inspired by the video game scores of Manabu Namiki, Bullet Hell Abstraction, on side one. The bigger news for this fan, however, is that side two includes music from his re-imagined soundtrack to Koji Morimoto’s aforementioned anime short, which was originally part of the Memories trilogy.

You might recognize Magnetic Rose as the film gracing this very blog’s headliner – that decaying future piano resides at the heart of the mind-bending film. I consider it a sort of psychedelic cousin to the original Alien.

The release is over 30 minutes long and boasts more minimalist cover art from Robert Beatty. Hopefully that blue X is another die-cut detail like part one had!

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So, fellow Lopatin fans, keep an eye out on Record Store Day 2015, which hits Saturday, April 18.

Black To Comm’s Gigantic Self-Titled Album

This album made a spot on my Best of 2014: Honorable Mention list, for a lot of great reasons. Here it is, streaming free in its entirety.

 

It breaks traditionally stone-faced drone music into wondrous, almost funny eruptions of surprise and joy. Its 83 minute running time seems monolithic and impenetrable until you actually hit play and topple inward. The first track bursts with a mischievous philosophical rant, peaking with the line,

“Grab yourself by the anus and turn yourself inside out. Reveal your inner workings! Put that which is most basic out into the light, and put the decorative outer wrappings where they belong.”

The final track ends in a fever dream of early industrial rock vocals and manicured feedback swirls. A whole lot of really fun, weird music happens in between. Fans of Fennesz, black metal, drone rock, David Lynch, and fucked up dreams: listen now.

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Black To Comm is the artist name of German musician Marc Richter. He doesn’t have a lot of pictures online, so I just thought I’d share the album art in high resolution.

Best Music Of 2014: Honorable Mention

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Welcome to Part 1 of the Best Of 2014. Part 2, the very best albums of the year, can be found here: The Best Music of 2014

For my official Best Of 2014 list, I wanted to be concise and honest, brutally direct. I trimmed the full list to just 14 albums that affected me in some grand fashion. This did not leave much room for the most of the amazing music I heard last year, became addicted to, and still listen to today. So, instead of making some sprawling list, I’ve crafted a full breakdown of my “Honorable Mention” albums of 2014. The music here is astounding, through and through. I just happened to love a handful of music even more than this. That list is coming soon.

I’ve included one song from each album, choosing a music video when available, and audio-only tracks for the rest. Click play and listen to these, especially if you’re totally unfamiliar. This is how new favorites are born!

Please let me know in the comments what albums you feel I may have missed, or share how you feel about what is here. I’d love the feedback.

Albums are listed by artist and title, with the record label below.

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