The Audio Gourmet netlabel curated by sound designer and musician Harry Towell (aka Spheruleus) has released a string of successful EP’s over the last year with the focus on fifteen minute ambient/experimental works by each artist. A fifteen minute compilation (fifteen one-minute tracks) was also produced called Coffee Break Ambient. The idea behind all of these 15 minute offerings is that they can easily be listened to within the standard British tea break 🙂

The Hidden Landscapes album is the first full length compilation to break with the 15 minute tradition and includes fourteen tracks composed around the theme of winter and wintery landscapes. To complete this project Audio Gourmet teamed up with Hibernate Records (design, distribution and sales of CD copies) and Byron from the Felt Collective (mastering).

The tracklist is full of well known names from the ambient/experimental field and the album as a whole is a very successful mix of drone development/field recording/processed acoustic guitar or piano pieces (Ibreathefur, Fabio Orsi, Hessien, Spheruleus, Marc Ostermeier, Pillowdiver), heavily processed electronic noises (Machinefabriek, Maps and Diagrams), semi-industrial sounding, electronic driven pieces (Martin Herterich, Philip Sulidae, Damian Valles), experimental pieces using a complex array of sounds and techniques (Offthesky and Pillowgarden, The Green Kingdom) and some that are just plain quirky fun (Nicola Ratti).

You will be hard pushed to find the direct connection with winter (other than the track name) in a number of these tracks, particularly the more heavily processed and noise driven electronic pieces, but this actually helps to give the album more longevity than a strictly interpreted ‘winter listening’ compilation would have done.  

Hidden Landscapes is an accomplished and varied work of finely crafted experimental music showcasing some of the best talent in this diverse genre and is well worth picking up in limited CD or download form.        

Tracklist:

1. Offthesky and Pillowgarden: Abandon Leaf

2. Maps and Diagrams: Everybody’s got Something to Hide

3. Ibreathefur: My Resonant Heart

4. Hessien: Hypothesis

5. The Green Kingdom: Velvet Landscape

6. Spheruleus: Frost

7. M.Ostermeier: Central

8. Nicola Ratti: Nordich

9. Machinefabriek: Toendra

10. Martin Herterich: Black Branches

11. Pillowdiver: Drugged on the Permafrost

12. Damian Valles: Antumbra

13. Fabio Orsi: Tropfen

14. Philip Sulidae: Broken Toes

Hidden Landscapes Compilation: Various Artists.  Audio Gourmet Netlabel (digital downloads) and Hibernate Records (200 limited edition CDs currently selling on preorder).

Audio Gourmet Netlabel: http://music.audiogourmet.co.uk/

Hibernate Records: http://shop.hibernate-recs.co.uk/product/hidden-landscapes

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