Review

Various Artists

10

Music From Memory • 2023

Jamie Tiller, co-founder of the Music From Memory label, died last October. The label’s catalogue combined the simple with the tasteful, releasing ambient, beatless mysteries and psychedelic indie rock albums. The compilation »10« is a tribute to Tiller’s sound, and it’s hard not to read the 18 tracks as a musical farewell from and to him. 

The album opens with a gentle, melancholic guitar piece by Joan Bibiloni—camp fire music with a strong wistful touch. Jonny Nash takes a different approach to introspection on »Dream It Right«: more focused, more present, with plaintive choirs and cinematic strings that wouldn’t be out of place on »The Last Mohican«. Music From Memory often dabbles in kitsch, but it’s always transported in such a heart-warming way that it makes sense. Or as sublime and loving as on Terekke’s »Just Ducking Around«. Gigi Masin, on the other hand, contributes a thuddingly hammering trip on »Panama Girl« that gently blows New Age esotericism to smithereens. RAMZi’s pithy breaks are also fantastic, with the pads morphing back and forth as usual. The album closes with Vito Ricci’s 25-minute »Da Hamptons« from 1985, which creates the densest atmosphere not only because of its length, but also because it best embodies the essence of Music From Memory: birdsong, distorted guitars and synth coils that never seem to end.