George & Caplin — Electronic Eulogy
((Not on label) no#, 2004, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2006-05-01The electronic duo of George and Caplin (AKA Jason Fredrick Iselin and Jeffrey Wentworth Stevens) has obviously been paying attention in their History of Electronic Music classes. On several of the tracks, there’s a definite vibe of early Kraftwerk, tempered with an 80s melodicism along the lines of New Order. There’s also a definite post-rock sensibility at play, with reverb-heavy sonic environments populated by minimal acoustic guitar strumming and low-mixed vocals, rather like mellow Sigur Rós. This surface simplicity and directness belie an inner complexity, for there are almost always subtle countermelodies and interlocking parts weaving in and out of the arrangements. I’m also reminded a bit of the deceptive, almost child-like simplicity of Brian Eno’s work, for example the instrumental pieces on his early solo albums. All in all, it’s quite an engaging concoction, with moments of darkness contrasted by bouncy, happy parts. Another lesson of history they’ve learned is to avoid the Pure Electronic Trap, where good compositions are sabotaged by the absence of human feeling. Live (AKA real) instruments blend with programmed ones, and all are subjected to a wide variety of manipulations, from old-school like reverb and backwards masking to new-school like sampling and quick-cut chopping. This is an enjoyable CD that should find fans both among lovers of pop music and electronic experimentation.
Related artist(s): George & Caplin
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more