It seems like the FRKWYS collaboration series has been steadily releasing a slew of quality releases. Since RVNG Intl. launched the series, 2 years ago this past September, it has steadily produced a stream of high profile remix & collaborative projects with the 12" single format in mind, something that the label is all too familiar with due to it's dance oriented approach (it's in the name). It's first release was featured three Excepter tracks remixed by the like of Chris & Cosey & J.G. Thirwell. FRKWYS has continued its winning streak thus with it's worst offerings being forgettable at worst, something that is actually quite a compliment considering the inconsistent nature which can result in such one-off collaborative projects.
As a result it's no surprise to see another seemingly legendary meeting than between Blues Control & Laraaji. The former being covered here in the past for the duo's other band Watersports here. When I saw Laraaji's name next on the release page I was pretty stoked. Some may recognize his name, heck some readers may be hardcore fans, as his place in the new age / ambient scenes have been fermented ever since his collaborative and solo projects that Brian Eno helped shed light upon in the early eighties. When combined with Blues Controls new-age, or should i say noise-age, to "rock band" mentality the prospective results have a somewhat high mark to strive towards.
From listening the first utterances of LP opener Awaken Day the album is off towards meeting the previously mentioned expectations. Beginning with a steady, deep, drum pulse ebbs towards an altered conscious state, with bits and pieces of saturated tape sounds stream in and out of the mix. All the while the subtle sound of the ocean's movements provide a bed for all of the sounds called upon to be cover by and left all to itself once all else has departed.
So yea... it's pretty much what should have come of the project. It's an updated take on a now long running tradition of altered forms of listening and thinking about musical meditations. My only complaint could not be more minor, as I'm not sure at this point how Russ Waterhouse & Lea Cho distinguish and label their performances as either Blues Control or Watersports. Considering all the new-age vibes surrounding WS this seems like the perfect opportunity for a collaboration under that moniker. Something very minor indeed because if it sounds good why wonder.
The Blues Control & Laraaji album is being released by RVNG Intl. this Nov. 15th on LP, Double Cassette, CD, or Digitally (or pretty much every single format you can possibly desire).