The Ministry of Inside Things — Contact Point
(Synkronos Music SYNK 027, 2006, CD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2007-03-01
The Ministry of Inside Things is the Philadelphia-based space music duo of Chuck van Zyl (synths) and Art Cohen (guitar). Individually, both Chuck and Art have been involved in the Philadelphia electronic/space music scene for well over 20 years. Chuck is best known for hosting the Philadelphia radio show Star’s End. He has a number of solo releases (cassette and CD) as well as collaborations with Peter Gulch of the Nightcrawlers. Art has a number of solo releases as well. Chuck and Art formed The Ministry of Inside Things about six years ago and have released two CDs of live material, Everlasting Moment (2002) and Contact Point (2006). Their music is firmly rooted in the Berlin space music school of Tangerine Dream, Ash Ra, and Klaus Schulze. There are seven tracks on Contact Point that take you from quiet ambiance to energetic rhythms. The obvious comparisons are with Tangerine Dream (cyclical pulsating sequencer patterns), but I also detect the influence of Pink Floyd’s Echoes. On top of this are some artistic found sounds peppered throughout the CD (lapping water and chirping crickets). The duo of Chuck and Art, with their musical roots in two different genres (electronic and rock), work together to craft beautiful music that can stand the test of time. Highly recommended to all fans of space music.
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more