Review: For the deepest digging label out there Music From Memory brings together a highlighted retrospective of songs from Brazilian composer and multi-instrumentalist Priscilla Ermel. Drawn from a body of work that was originally recorded between 1986 and 1994, it's the label's first release for 2020 which dives deeper into an epoch of music touched upon in the label's Outro Tempo II compilation released last year. Calling upon new age sounds of percussion, deep double bass and folky, experimental field recordings, this album combines a history of Brazilian music with Ermel's own explorations into retro-active music technology that opens up a mystical space between the ancient and new age that evolves into an emotive language of love, time, space and folk instrumentality.
Review: Music From Memory has a reputation for doing the unexpected. It would be fair to say that few would have predicted the Dutch label's decision to release a collection "electronic and contemporary music from Brazil". As usual, the Red Light Records affiliated crate-digging crew has done a superb job with Outro Tempo, which was compiled by label affiliate John Gomez. Musically, it's predictably varied but always beautiful. It mostly focuses on tracks that fuse traditional Brazilian instrumentation, percussion and musical ideas, with elements of electronica, ambient, jazz-fusion and Reich style minimalism. The accompanying liner notes do a great job in putting the collection in context, explaining how the music was often inspired by political changes within Brazil during the 1980s.
Review: After 2017's first volume garnered widespread critical acclaim, Music From Memory present a second collection of "electronic and contemporary music from Brazil". We've moved a little forward in time, with this set focusing on the years 1984-1986 compared to the original's 1978-1992, but the general New Age ethos remains the same. May East's opener 'Maraka', a slab of slo-mo disco with almost Gothic-style female vocals, is a highlight but also something of an outlier, being one of the album's few dancefloor-oriented moments: elsewhere, more downtempo and ambient moods prevail. Chance's mid-80s cut 'Intro: Amazonia' is particularly worthy of attention, coming on like trip-hop about 10 years before the fact.