Take ‘Couver 3/15/16 – Jantastic
Written by Spokane Andrew on March 15, 2016
Oh heavens! A huge block of music!
This fine-looking fellow is Jan Jelinek.
Herr Jelinek is a German ambient techno producer whose album Loop Finding Jazz Records is featured on today’s episode of Take ‘Couver. Released in 2001, the record finds Jelinek composing in a gorgeous range of ambient styles, reminiscent of everything from Gas-style 4/4 techno to Matmos‘ pop-in-disguise to glitchy headspace dreamweavers. It’s done in a surprisingly warm emotional style. Not many laptop artists can make such a claim, but Jelinek pulls it off through an excellent ear for texture and plenty of attention to detail.
Personally, this album blew me away, which is why I chose to play the whole thing front-to-back for today’s show. I think it has more variety than most records that can be tagged as “ambient,” which makes for an unusually diverse, but arresting full listen. It’ll alternately get bodies moving and draw minds into introspection, which, frankly, makes it a rather sensual listen. Also unlike most ambient music, Loop Finding Jazz Records is approachable to inexperienced listeners. It’s inviting. Part of this phenomenon is due to the presence of recognizable, logical beats that still manage to diverge into unexpected realms; they manage to be both catchy and interesting.
Still, it fills the Eno-defined ambient billing quite nicely. It works at both high and low volumes. I found it useful to play in the background while building furniture, but it’s also served as background filler while reading books. As Eno says in his liner notes for his album Ambient 1: Music for Airports, “An ambience is defined as an atmosphere, or a surrounding influence: a tint. My intention is to produce original pieces…to induce calm and a space to think. Ambient music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting.” And while Loop Finding Jazz Records certainly leans more toward the interesting than ignorable side of the spectrum, it certainly can fulfill both roles and thus has a great place on our little show.