VITAL WEEKLY 984: Error Log

This is the third collaborative effort of Michel Banabila and Rutger Zuydervelt, also known as Machinefabriek. The first two were released in 2013, in a time span of nine months (see Vital Weekly 860 and 898), but no doubt it's not easy to get these two busy bees together, hyper active as they seem in working with electronic music, collaborating with others and playing live. There was, I think, quite some difference between the first two releases; the first one was perhaps what we could expect from both of them: ambient like, digital noise, improvised and yet very much composed. 'Travelog', the second one (the first being untitled) seemed less abstract, more songs (as in 'songs' as in 'pop') like, with great little melodies somewhere. So the third one was highly anticipated by me. 'Error Log' has three pieces (divided in such a way that it says 'release me on LP too, please'), which are quite long, compared to the shorter songs on the previous release. It's however not exactly a return to their first release either; it seems they are exploring the ambient side here more and more, but also in a more orchestral way, especially in 'Stemmenspel' and the title piece. 'Animal', the eleven-minute opening piece here works with more loosely improvised sound embedded in larger clouds of sound. It's all right, but not their finest moment. The violins and voices of 'Stemmenspel' (play of/with voices) have an orchestral feeling, along with those swift changes we know from Zuydervelt, the melody of Banabila and the electronic treatments of both. It moves the listener gently through an excellent set of moods and textures, almost like a soundtrack. The field recordings of the title piece are just a start to move into quite a cosmos of drones (courtesy of the guitar), small rhythms and rainy day recordings; Here too a fine trip, spanning some nineteen minutes but perhaps less soundtrack material. Having said that: it's an excellent piece, which once again brings out the best of both composers. Perhaps this third CD is less of a surprise, but it explores their joint interests further. (FdW)

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Music composer & sound artist. Michel Banabila releases music since 1983 and has produced musical scores for numerous films, documentaries, video art, theatre plays & choreographies. His music varies from minimal loop-based electronica, 4th world and neoclassical pieces, to drones, experimental ambient, and punk-as-fuck tape music. In addition to acoustic instrumentation, Banabila uses electronics, field recordings, and snippets from radio, tv and internet.

Bureau B, Eilean Rec, Séance Centre, Pork Recordings, Tone Casualties, Challenge Records, Steamin' Soundworks, Knekelhuis, Tapu Records.