SSI — E Pluribus Unum
(Azra 0203, 2006, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2008-01-01SSI (Sonic Solutions, Inc.) apparently consists of California brothers Will and John Goff, who combine laptops and MIDI synths along with live and programmed percussion to create sounds reminiscent of, but distinct from, old-school electronic music. There are certainly elements of Tangerine Dream and Kraftwerk, as well as some touches of newer electronica, but there's a free-wheeling live vibe to it that really sets it apart from anything else I've heard in a while. There's also a random, maybe improvisational feeling to it, with sequences that wander erratically and toss off accents in unexpected places. While I don't think anyone would actually mistake this for TD, that's probably the closest comparison I can make, especially if you concentrate on the late 70s. The dominant feature is a cascading echo affecting various sounds in time with the sequencing. Tie a couple of those in knots, sprinkle liberally with washes of string sounds, and splatter with percussion. It's a very appealing combination of atmosphere and energy that really works for me. It's basically one long piece divided into six sections; there's a sense of continuity from track to track, though different elements and moods are associated with each. It's much too rhythmic to be ambient, but not suited for the dance floor either, so I just hope they can find an audience for this middle country. Now, if they just mixed in a Mellotron...
Related artist(s): SSI
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more