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484 music CD releases for Electronica ::
 
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Music CD Ray of LIght by Madonna
Madonna - Ray of LIght
Artist
Madonna
Title
Ray of LIght
Label: Warner Bros/Wea
Genre: Electronica

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Madonna - Ray of LIght
Never underestimate Madonna's power of persuasion: By nearly all critical accounts, Ray of Light, Madonna's first album of new material since 1994's Bedtime Stories, and her first since motherhood, is her richest, most accomplished record yet. While Ray of Light is being tagged as Madonna's big leap into electronica, it's important to note two things: First, her music has always had close ties to dance culture, and, second, her collaborator William Orbit is no Chemical Brother. Though it has all the latest blips, bleeps, and crackles electronica has to offer, Ray of Light is still largely an adult album, completely within Madonna's realm. Still, Orbit's tasteful sonic constructions provide Madonna with her most adventurous, hippest musical backdrop ever. What's more, the arrangements and production are understated enough to highlight an even bigger development: Fresh from singing lessons on the Evita set, Madonna's vocal range, depth, and clarity have never been stronger. But larger pipes don't necessarily make for deeper, truer music. Never a master lyricist, Madonna's words have worked best when they've practically been slogans ("Vogue," "Express Yourself"). This time she goes for more emotional depth, and even tries her hand at ethno-techno-mysticism ("Shanti/Ashtangi"). She largely stumbles, however. The tone conveyed on songs like "Nothing Really Matters" is a self-centered pat on the back that belies her claim to a newfound altruism. It's enough to make you wonder, now that Madonna's given up being our material girl, if maybe she's set her sights on becoming the center of our spiritual world too.
 

Music CD Selwa  by Choying Drolma
Choying Drolma  - Selwa
Artist
Choying Drolma
Title
Selwa
Label: Six Degrees
Genre: Electronica

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Choying Drolma  - Selwa
It's been seven years since Minnesota-born guitarist Steve Tibbetts and Chöying Drolma, a sweet-faced, crop-haired Tibetan nun, released their first collaboration, Chö. On this sophomore effort, the two have created another series of placid sonic journeys, wherein Drolma's nasal yet pristine alto-to-mezzo soars amid a restrained blend of guitar, electronica, drones, and overdubbed voices, augmented by Marc Anderson's hand-drums and occasional hints of whispery chimes touched by nothing human. Chöying Drolma is a proponent of Vajrayana Buddhism, in which obstacles to enlightenment are proactively cut free via intense forms of meditation that can take place in graveyards and other provocative locations. No passive convent recluse, she has founded a school for nuns and continues to reach out to the world via the beauty her voice, while remaining aloof from its frenzy. The album leaves a strangely energetic peacefulness in its wake; a profound relaxation that also encourages action toward betterment.
 

Music CD Solace by Mandalay
Mandalay - Solace
Artist
Mandalay
Title
Solace
Label: v2 North America
Genre: Electronica

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Mandalay - Solace
"Beautiful", is probably the top track on the album, with 3 variations, and the 12" Canny mix is my favourite. Some of the material reminded me of early Propaganda, but infinitely smoother. I prefer Mandaly to Portishead, who were always a little weak with their vocals, and after listening to them after Solace, that opinion is confirmed. The material blends well, giving the impression of a single hour long song. But it is the remixes on the bonus CD that make this version so good. The now familiar sound of a soft girl's harmonising voice over a throbbing beat is so good, it will be hard to find better material.
 

Music CD Sound of Water by St. Etienne
St. Etienne - Sound of Water
Artist
St. Etienne
Title
Sound of Water
Label: Sound of Pop
Genre: Electronica

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St. Etienne - Sound of Water
Saint Etienne's delicate, perfectly crafted blend of '60s pop and of-the-moment electronica has been replicated by so many other acts over the years that the band is threatened with losing its musical brand. The artistic achievement in Sound of Water has been diminished somewhat by competent musicians such as Broadcast and Mono having picked up the gauntlet Saint Etienne first threw down in 1988, and having taken the sounds to new places. Trends are fleeting by definition, and Saint Etienne, in the precarious position of being an inadvertent trendsetter, would have served their audience better with a little reinvention (the Cardigans made this transition magically with 1998's Gran Turismo). Rather, they stick to their overly precious formula, mixing cheap-sounding drum loops, Sarah Cracknell's snazzy-cool vocals, drawn-out melody, and subtle instrumentation (flute, harpsichord, bongos) with butterfly-fluttering techno. As lovely as it all is, by the end of the album, the ear is desperate to hear something more assertive--it's as unsatisfying as eating cotton candy all day when you long for lasagna. In all, the abundance of emotionless na na na's and la la la's result in no no no's
 

Music CD The K & D Sessions by Kruder & Dorfmeister
Kruder & Dorfmeister - The K & D Sessions
Artist
Kruder & Dorfmeister
Title
The K & D Sessions
Label: K7
Genre: Electronica

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Kruder & Dorfmeister - The K & D Sessions
Viennese trippers Peter Kruder and Richard Dorfmeister fry up beats like a fine Wiener schnitzel. With crisp percussion, tender melodies, and subtle bass flavor, they more than know their way around the production kitchen. Take the remix skills of these two chefs de musique; add a dash of fresh electronic ingredients, including Roni Size, Rockers Hi-Fi, David Holmes, Alex Reece, and others; run it through a beats processor; and you have one sumptuous and definitely not calorie-free meal. Tastier sound bites can be sampled during the Roni Size "Heroes" course, as K&D strip down and reconstruct a new and improved recipe for downtempo soul. Lip-smacking good.
 

Music CD The Pink Opaque by Cocteau Twins
Cocteau Twins - The Pink Opaque
Artist
Cocteau Twins
Title
The Pink Opaque
Label: 4ad Records UK
Genre: Electronica

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Cocteau Twins - The Pink Opaque
An early compilation of material culled from three albums and three EPs released between 1983 - 1985, showcases the early, musical brilliance of two young kids from Scotland (Robin Guthrie, Elizabeth Fraser) and a lad from England (Simon Raymonde). Collectively known as Cocteau Twins, the Twins became more well-known in the late eighties, early nineties, but their musical genius was laid during this time. This compilation showcases that brilliance. Whereas the Twins began to experiment with sequencers and more elaborate production in the mid-to-late eighties, the power of these songs is in the raw, emotional energy and sparse production. This was the period the Cocteau Twins laid the foundation for a sound that later became imitated and enormously influencial among musical artists. Standout tracks include, "From the Flagstones" (originally recorded for the "Sunburst and Snowblind" EP) which has a simple guitar, piano foundation, yet is such an elegant and romantic piece, "Aikea-Guinea (remixed from the the same titled EP from 1985 with slightly louder guitars) showcases how the Twins were able to evoke incredible feeling and emotion, and "Hitherto" which showcases the early guitar brilliance of Robin Guthrie.
 

Music CD Walking Wounded by Everything But the Girl
Everything But the Girl - Walking Wounded
Artist
Everything But the Girl
Title
Walking Wounded
Label: Atlantic/Wea
Genre: Electronica

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Everything But the Girl - Walking Wounded
Ben Watt and Tracey Thorn of Everything but the Girl have done their share of style-hopping, from jazz pop to Britpop to orchestral pop to contemporary R&B to jazzy R&B. Their seventh album, 1996's Walking Wounded, finds the duo landing, good as new, onto the dance floor with a batch of songs based around techno-derived beats. The shift toward electronics may seem extreme for a group that courted adult audiences, but given the huge success of their 1994 beat-driven remix single "Missing" and their fruitful collaborations on Massive Attack's breakthrough trip-hop record Protection, the rewards of embracing club sounds had already been well proven. Everything but the Girl's music has always focused on Thorn's lush, soulful voice--a tribute to its versatility, it weathered well through all the group's stylistic incarnations. Walking Wounded, however, introduces a second focal point in the insanely attractive, intricately sculpted beats of the jungle offshoot drum & bass. On cuts like "Before Today," "Single," and the title track, the interaction of a beat's minutely detailed rhythms and a voice that rides smoothly over the top makes for an elegant symbiosis. And even with the help of progressive dance specialists like Howie B. and Spring Heel Jack, Everything but the Girl retains a maturity that shouldn't alienate old fans.
 

Music CD Who Can You Trust? by Morcheeba
Morcheeba - Who Can You Trust?
Artist
Morcheeba
Title
Who Can You Trust?
Label: Rhino/Wea
Genre: Electronica

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Morcheeba - Who Can You Trust?
"I first heard Morcheeba's "Tape Loop" on one of my chill-out mixes a long time ago. But when I stopped listening to the mix after a few weeks, I sadly forgot all about them. However, after a four-year hiatus, I gave Morcheeba a second listen (quite by accident) a few weeks ago while on vacation with some friends. One of our group had brought with him this CD, on which I was immediately hooked. Morcheeba's debut album is hypnotic, trippy, quiet, and beautiful. The CD provides excellent backgroud chillout music. Comparable to Massive Attack and Portishead, Morcheeba features a whispery, female lead singer (Skye Edwards) and a host of electronic, ambient grooves. Starting with "Moog Island" the CD quickly sets the quiet and hypnotic tone with Skye's haunting voice and deep, calm baselines. The disc continues in a similar fashion with "Trigger Hippie," before breaking into the basy, quiet instrumental interlude of "Post Humous." Next is "Tape Loop," which was just as cool as I had remembered it to be."
 

 

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