EuroJams Spring 2019 Edition – Part 2: Al-jiçç, The Chi Factory & Alameda 5

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Al-jiçç: E

I hope you’re enjoying last week’s crop of European delights. We’ll continue with more, leaving Scandinavia for some new spots with an emphasis on the strange. Our first stop is in Portugal. The band is Al-jiçç, the album title is a symbol that I can’t find on my keyboard and this level of unpronounceability is probably a leading indicator on music that is tough to capture in words. Jazz? Sure, I guess. A world-spanning jazz that combines elements of klezmer and African rhythms and just plain rocks the heck out. Guitars match bass clarinet in some serious jammers. I have a feeling you’re gonna enjoy this one.

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The Chi Factory: The Mantra Recordings

If you’re looking for something even more mind expansive, check out The Mantra Recordings, the new release from Rotterdam’s The Chi Factory. This is ambient electronica at its finest. Consisting of four 21-minute tracks (exactly 21:00), each its own universe, the record is dedicated to poet Robert Lax. It traces the course of a day, from dawn til dusk, combining a range of field recordings and electronic whirls to create a very meditative listening experience. It takes some patience and a certain mood to get into such minimalism, but there are rewards along the journey.

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Alameda 5: Eurodrome

My final pick for this week also starts off in a very ambient place, but gets into some pretty deep Eurojams before too long. Appropriately called Eurodrome, it’s the latest record from Polish quintet Alameda 5. Hypnotic grooves, krautrock’y synth excursions, Eno-esque rhythms, plenty of guitar and a healthy dose of weirdness; it’s something different in a good way. Give it a shot, I think you’ll dig.

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