Exposé Online banner

Michel Banabila — Early Works - Things Popping up from the Past
(Bureau B BB227, 1989/2016, CD / LP/ DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2017-05-20

Early Works - Things Popping up from the Past Cover art

Dutch composer Michel Banabila has been recording and releasing music since 1983 and he has produced musical scores for films, documentaries, plays, and dance. This Early Works retrospective collects eleven out-of-print tracks from his early years, released either on cassette, vinyl EPs, or limited CD editions. The music is a mixture of minimal piano sketches, beautiful electronic loops, neo-classical pieces, and ambient drones. I am only familiar with his 1984 ambient EP Des Traces Retrouvees, which represents a small sample of what appears on Early Works. The piano sketches are ambient atmospheric gestures that flirt with Erik Satie with their simplicity. The harmonium sketches are either minimal repeated note patterns ala Philip Glass or approach cathedral organ chords. The looping electronics mixed with piano, guitars, and percussion take the listener in a different direction. And the ambient drone pieces allow the listener to focus on the music and hear inside the notes, between the notes, and be receptive to the music. The best tracks on this collection are “The Workers” with its quasi-industrial vibe and the closing track “The Lost Drones Tape 2” that sustains your interest for its entire eight minutes. Early Works is a musical map that documents Banabila’s journey, and one that crisscrosses back and forth between the old and new.


Filed under: Archives, 2016 releases, 1989 recordings

Related artist(s): Michel Banabila

Latest news

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

The Mother Hips - Kiss the Crystal Flake – The Mother Hips have been kicking around the Bay Area for at least a decade, having a half-dozen or so releases to date, though this is their first in a few years. Their stock in trade is great...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues