3VIEW :: Maps & Diagrams / x.y.r. (Handstitched*)

We catch up on three recent releases from Tim Martin’s Handstitched* imprint, two from the head of the house with his Maps & Diagrams hat on and one from relatively unknown Russian Vladimir Karpov, aka x.y.r.

3VIEW :: Maps & Diagrams / x.y.r. (Handstitched*)

First impression of Ariel and Turmeric is that they lean less towards the default Maps & Diagrams ambient drone than a more automated Kosmische synth-y bent once in the catchment area of the Atlantis wing of Handstitched*’s musical operations. The Diagram man has decided to be somewhat enigmatic, his bandcamp bearing the legend ‘I prefer to remain a mystery,’ so we reciprocate, similarly elliptical. Track list teaser: 1. 88-21 02:40 2. 1864-67 03:34 3. 0161-870 02:18 4. 5000rx 02:35 5. Five & Three 03:11 6. c-3po 06:00; the rest is left to your imagination (and Soundcloud). Wrought in his Roadmap hidey-hole in Cambridge, each is a ltd. ed. of 50 (nifty mini CD-r with nice handmade sleeve), so hurry scurry or you’ll be sorry–it’ll be just ho-hum humdrum digital downloads for you, young man.
Contributing Editor’s note: on second thoughts, by the time this gets to an igloo page near you each set of 50 objects of desire will doubtless be sold out, so chill out, chaps (artwork shown is for dull-clad digital versions).

St. Petersburg’s Vladimir Karpov aka x.y.r. lets his formanta-mini (‘vintage Soviet keytar‘), pedal effects, loop station, mic and field recordings (Indian Ocean, Varkala Beach, Thiruvananthapuram, India, Winter 2015) peal out from a bedroom bliss bunker of retro-New Age glo-fi ultra-dreamwave (something like). Each release on his bandcamp appears linked thematically with a mythical/adventure destination, e.g. the Arctic, El Dorado, Robinson Crusoe. The object under scrutiny, waves t*pes vol.1, offers a ‘tidal tetralogy of enlightening electro-magnetic evocations which inspire the listener to drift effortlessly through the coastal waters of the subconscious mind,’ which suggests another nautical theme. Sure enough, like Arktika, another thematically related mini-album, waves t*pes vol.1 alludes–titularly, narratively and graphically–to the romance of those seafarers intrepid enough to venture beyond Russia’s frozen periphery; first track, “Dolphin Smile,” for example, which has lush, bubbly synths percolate perkily over a softly shaded field recording.
Trainspotter’s footnote: Karpov’s nom de disque is drawn from Gogol’s Dead Souls, a character from which is pretentious enough to build his own ‘Temple of Solitary Contemplation’–Russian translation of whose initial letters are ‘x.y.r.’ (perhaps the artist mocking his own romantic leanings).

Ariel and waves t*pes vol.1 are available on Handstitched.

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