October 3, 2007


Serein was established on the 19th of October, 2005 as a venture for promoting musicians and their work online. A so called 'net-label', they release music in MP3 format under the creative commons license for free. Releases are grouped identically to how you would expect a record label's catalogue to be organised. In the music section you will find releases listed with a catalogue number (ser000) identifying each unique release. Within each of these are links to music files and artwork, with the option to download the whole pack as a compressed zip file.

They largely concentrate on releasing experimental, ambient and electro acoustic compositions.


Recommended releases:

ser013 (2007)

The Welsh Serein-Netlabel has always been a good address for undogmatic electro-acoustic music that combines expanded experimentalism with a certain amount of catchiness. Those who like Ambient music without an esoteric aftertaste will probably know about the label. 1.000 Hours Of Staring, Herzog or Neuf Meuf are just three names you once read if you’re a faithful consumer of this blog. Catalogue number thirteen is the latest addition to the label rooster and comes off as an self titled EP of the duo Nest. A special release, because 50% of Nest is Huw Roberts, the guy who founded and runs Serein.co.uk. He’s accomplished by Otto Totland of critically acclaimed Norwegian ‘engineers of emotion’ Deaf Center. Both are classically educated piano-players. Does this fact make you guess what their collaboration will sound like? Not really.

First track Lodge start with intimate piano chords. The microphone seems to be place very close to the strings, you can hear the dull beat of the hammers. You’re part of an exclusive family music-event while decent electronic noises arise from the adjoining room. Horns and strings stalk from the last row to your ears and create a dense ambient layer. A saw tooth synthesizer swells and ebbs away. Someone holds his breath. The second track is entitled Kyoto, and indeed, the first thing that came to my mind was Japanese folklore. Due to some decently pulsing drones and field-recordings that sound like Emil Klotzsch’ Tiefe Berge-composition, Roberts plays the Welsh Harp. A few piano tones at hand, the song comes up with some interesting and beautiful harmonies between art school and Popmusic. Clever composition, moreover. Reminds me of the Eve Future-releases of German intellectuals Kreidler. Same for Marefjellet. Track three joins the close piano-sound of the first song with the Asian flavours of the second one. The sound of distant rain and haunting string-arpeggios in the back make you think of film soundtracks, Arvo Pärt and Tom “Moondog” Hardiner.

We’re starting the b-side with a ray of light. Charlotte is introduced with loose field-recordings and cautious synthesizer drones. Back for good, the piano rushes in with a strong harmonic motive (probably Totlands’ play) that is accomplished with processed strings and synthesizers. Sweet! Maybe the track most songlike. My personal favourite is Cad Goddeu, though. A strange amorphous Ambient composition of slowly smouldering soundlayers it is, with filtered strings fixed like swarms of midges in the heat of the afternoon sun, concentric loops of solemnly clarinet-tones and sketches of a shady piano. Once again, references go out to Marsen Jules (see Yara) and the Grand Signor of suspension, Ennio Morricone. Finally, Trans Siberian is a fine fade-out for the EP. The track is composed around a steam train-recording and features some relaxed piano chords and smooth synth-layers.

Roberts and Totland fuse twinkle-toed Chamber Music and experimental Ambient. Though I’d have like to hear some more gutsy sounds, their EP is unearthly beautiful, ignores all genre-limitations and proves the huge amount of musical knowledge, and, even better, intuition, both Roberts and Totland invest into their compositions. Chapeau! ( Review by R U Bored)

Neuf Meuf /
It's cold in space


"So, what of the music? 'It's cold in space' says the title, but I'm hard pushed to find anything cold about this album. Listening to it seems the perfect accompaniment to the hot weather that's finally found it's way to British shores; gently plucked guitars lilting in and out of the sun drenched picture Neuf Meuf paints. Snatches of vocals and the rattle and whirr of percussion and field recordings will have you melting whether the sun is shining or not. There are darker moments here too, though. 'Unrest unsave', featuring vocals from 'Sepia Hours' plunges you into darkness and will leave you feeling quite unsettled, before raising the mood once again with the epic and enchanting 'goldberry dreamstream'."


DominoDub said...

Thanks for the Great Blog .!

Yes the NEST album is very good got it a few weeks ago, hard to think that it is on a free NETLABLE

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