Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Machine Love is my WISH TANK and I am Lost in Transport: Hyper-sleeping

The music cascades. Long guitar whines interspersed with the delicate notes of piano lay over a steady, quiet drum line. And other sounds wash through the soundscape, like water sliding over a pane of glass, navigating around attached debris and other detritus. Electronic noises modulate at different frequencies wrapped in the soughing of disembodied vocals, rising and falling like a night breeze over dark waters. The melodies are harmonious and gentle, soft and graceful, polite. There is no jarring cacophony or dissonance. Though some tunes are more upbeat than others, all are atmospheric, ambient, and elegant.

Pretentious? Maybe. (Not them, me). I am trying to describe the divine sounds of this band and language seems insufficient to capture what they do with sound. Machine Love has a funk groove that is sexy and chill without being boring or turgid. Each song has a distinctive flavor but all share a common theme that is individual to Machine Love.

Ambient groove, sexy chill-out, or electronic soul. Machine Love fits the mood for rainy days or holidays with loved ones. They are contemplative and serene and yet instilled with a vibrant and elusive energy. They are the sound of the metropolitan zeitgeist.

I can’t believe they only have 482 friends.

On My Space.

482 friends.

Other musical acts that aren’t in the same realm of quality have thousands?

Why have so few people heard of this band?

Machine Love
is an electronica, soul, space rock duo based in San Francisco. Though its music contains no lyrics, Machine Love applies vocalizations and live electric guitar against an ambient groove backdrop of funky rhythms and spacey melodies.

Machine Love lists its influences as psychedelic, lounge, jazz, funk, and rock artists such as Thievery Corporation, Fila Brazilia, Visit Venus, Air, Pink Floyd, Cocteau Twins, Herbie Hancock, Porcupine Tree, Rise Robots Rise, Gus Gus, The Flaming Lips, Beck, Coldplay and Miles Davis.

Machine Love consists of Vincent James on Drums, Keyboards and Electronics along with Jim Hedges on Electric and Acoustic Guitars.

Machine Love can also be reached at MySpace.

You can stream of their music from their web site


There's also a great set up for their stuff at IT'S ABOUT MUSIC.

I acquired all seven of their albums via emusic. Please note that these are not seven albums of differing, original material. Some of these albums offer remixes of some songs or just repeat inclusions of the same material. Their music can also be found on Itunes and CD Baby.

For example, the original version of one of their most beautiful and chill songs, “Lost in Transport,” originally appeared on Space Travel Pak as a 7 minute and 34 second trek into a trippy flotation groove. But in a 2005 release by the spacey duo – Machinations – they trimmed the lengthy ride to a mere 3:26.

Whereas other doubles, such the six-minute-plus “Hyper Sleeping” also from 2003's Space Travel Pak (which is as far as I know only available on emusic) reappears on the 2005 Supermarket Vamps at its original length.

By far, their best work is the 2005 release Supermarket Vamps. Though I may love it best simply because it was the first album of theirs that I heard. I will delay a more detailed album-by-album set of reviews for a later blog post.

As listed on their own web site, the four main releases are

Net Works (2004)

Supermarket Vamps (2005)

Machinations (also 2005)

Pushing West (2006).

On emusic, I also found Space Travel Pak (2003), Atomic Power Pak (2003), and The Now Explosion (2003).

Most of the songs repeat, as mentioned, but sometimes in shortened versions. Check out “Stoner Girl,” which has some of the greatest groove sounds in their entire canon. I am also very found of “Night Digging,” "Wish Tank," and “Radio Ghost.”

CD Baby says: “Chillout moods, sexy vibes, retro funk. Trip Hop meets Space Rock. Think Thievery Corporation meets Pink Floyd or Zero 7 meets Porcupine Tree. Also sounds like Massive Attack, The Flaming Lips, Beck & Rain Tree Crow.”

Check out my tumblr where I have one cut posted and plan to upload more.

But with all the information here, go access Machine Love, listen, and then spread the love through the machine world.

PS: Yes, I know. Technically, the correct pronoun I should have used throughout for Machine Love is "it." Forgive me for a few "their" pronouns when they sound better in context.