The Qobuz Ideal Discography
With the Ideal Discography you (re)discover legendary recordings, all whilst building on your musical knowledge.
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Dance - Released July 1, 2015 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)
Electronic - Released March 23, 2015 | Planet Mu Records Ltd.
Trip Hop - Released August 1, 2013 | Mute, a BMG Company
Electronic - Released August 1, 2013 | Mute, a BMG Company
Trip Hop - Released June 29, 2013 | Inflamable Records
Electronic - Released June 3, 2013 | Domino Recording Co
Between Insides and its follow-up Immunity, Jon Hopkins worked with King Creosote on the charming Diamond Mine, which set the Scottish singer/songwriter's ruminations to backdrops that were half rustic folk and half evocative washes of sound. Immunity isn't nearly as acoustic as that collaboration was, but its gently breezy feel lingers on several of these songs: "Breathe This Air" expands from a pounding house rhythm into a roomy piano meditation that recalls Max Richter as much as Diamond Mine, while the title track -- which happens to feature King Creosote's vocals -- closes the album on a whispery note. This feeling extends to the rest of the album in less obvious ways; Immunity is often a more blended, and more expansive-sounding work than Insides, particularly on songs like the Brian Eno-esque "Abandon Window" and "Form by Firelight," which offers a playful study in contrasts in the way it bunches into glitches and then unspools a peaceful piano melody. Some of Immunity's most impressive moments expand on the blend of rhythm and atmosphere Hopkins emphasized on Insides: "Collider" uses sighing vocals courtesy of Dark Horses' Lisa Elle as punctuation for almost imperceptibly shifting beats and a heavy bassline that helps the track build into a moody, elegant whole; meanwhile, the aptly named "Sun Harmonics" turns Elle's sighs into something angelic over the course of 12 serene minutes. Despite these highlights, the album still reflects how Hopkins' polished approach is something of a blessing and a curse. Immunity shows how he's grown, in his subtle, accomplished way, as a composer and producer, yet its tracks occasionally feel like the surroundings for a focal point that never arrives. Even if it doesn't always demand listeners' attention, Immunity is never less than thoughtfully crafted. © Heather Phares /TiVo
Electronic - Released May 13, 2013 | Domino Recording Co
25 years old, his third solo album and first masterpiece. In Spring 2003, Four Tet secured himself as one of the United Kingdom’s unmissable electronic producers with Rounds, an entirely instrumental album in which some 300 samples are used! The most famous, that of Winter by Tori Amos on Unspoken, has since been dropped due to rights issues – the track has now been reworked. For the rest, Kieran Hebden rummaged deeply though the record trays, to places where others wouldn’t dare venture. This pays off with the surprising and tenacious sample from French 70s folk group, Malicorne, where the scarcely retouched loop from Le Bouvier features on the remarkable As Serious As Your Life, and would go on to be the object of an equally splendid remix by Jay Dee with Guilty Simpson that same year. Known for laying the foundations for the folktronica genre, Rounds is, from end to end, a muddle of drums, percussion, brass, bells and strings. It’s a truly industrious work that gives a rarely equalled sense of unity, from the nursery-rhyme-like My Angel Rocks Back and Forth to the hip-hop Unspoken. A masterpiece that’ll make your ears curl like no other. © Smaël Bouaici/Qobuz
Electronic - Released April 15, 2013 | Ninja Tune
On his 2013 release The North Borders, British producer Simon Green (aka Bonobo) continues along the organic-meets-electronic path that his 2010 release Black Sands followed, but this walk takes place as it's turning to dusk, and there are varying degrees of mist and chilliness along the way. Opener "First Fires" with Grey Reverend (singer/songwriter L.D. Brown) sounds like it could be quite warm, but it's entirely autumn-minded sweater music that wistfully wonders what to do with "faded dreams" as Green allows bits of glitchy sunlight to shine through his cloudy synth construction. "Emkay" is the clangs and echoes of a seaside port at night that wonderfully shuffles its way up to a lighthouse tune, then there's majestic songstress Erykah Badu wonderfully vibing ("We don't need no truth/Got plenty/Now it grows on trees") on "Heaven for the Sinner" over Bonobo's deep version of the broken beat. "Towers" suggests sleepy urban buildings in twilight with a vibraphone representing the little bits of life and light that will sparkle through the night, while "Don't Wait" is just before the dawn, as innocent chimes chase away the eerie things that lurk in the darkness. Still, it's not all drifting as the great "Know You" drops a jazzy breakbeat while the high stepper "Ten Tigers" struts to something sounding like an inverted handclap, although there's little here that will make sleeping cats jump off the couch. Fine song structure and an overall album flow that's nearly perfect are things Bonobo regulars might expect at this point, but his discography hasn’t offered up a rainy day soundtrack so fitting until this one, so hope the weatherman has bad news and plan on staying in. © David Jeffries /TiVo
Electronic - Released June 25, 2012 | Parlophone (France)