when the moon comes through

by Menelaos Tomasides

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1.
02:02
2.
06:07
3.
06:42
4.
06:27
5.
06:40
6.
01:32

about

About the album - when the moon comes through

Where does electronic music lead you? To the inside, to a calm and warm place where sound resonates with your body in quiet bliss, or to the outside where the rhythm wants you dance, even without moving? „when the moon comes through“ gives an answer to these questions that is complex yet extremely easy to understand in an immediate sentient and emotive way.

Cyprus born Menelaos Tomasides is not an unknown in Colognes thriving electronic scene, even though he mainly creates music for specific singular events and settings, like his conceptual „31 Minuten“ works, and like the tailored live set he made for the „Klang und Raum“ Ambient Festival, which was taking place end of November 2018 in the very distinct space of the beautiful brutalist church St. Gertrud. The site-specific sound material created for this concert found its way into „When the Moon Comes through“, reconsidered, rearranged, and remodeled for a home-listening experience. And an experience it is!

Radically friendly and accessible throughout, the album feels like a calm echo of the legendary „Total Confusion“ techno nights of Colognes Michael Mayer and Tobias Thomas, translated into the language of Ambient. At the same time the tracks are daring and nonconformistic. They are thinking and feeling outside the box of the established Cologne styles.

Menelaos music is unusual and unlikely both with respect to the structure and arrangement of tracks, and the materiality and spatiality of the sound. And yet these sounds convey an immediate sensation of familiarity and ease, of beauty and relaxation. Menelaos utilizes loudness and extreme dynamics in a thoughtful and intriguing way to accentuate strange runaway sounds while maintaining the continuity of the flow of the tracks, which is Ambient to the core. This is a rare art in our time, where hypercompressed and superoptimized glossy sounds dominate most of Ambient, drone and even deep listening music.

In this aspect the album follows and refines the subtle production skills of seminal electronic artists like Jan Jelinek or Terre Thaemlitz a.k.a. DJ Sprinkles. What is genuinly special about Menelaos music is the natural and seemingly effortless fusion of challenging experimentalism and a warm and soothing organic sound-design. This shows exemplary in the collaborative tracks with trombonist and bass trumpet player Achim Fink, a founding figure of the Cologne jazz and free improvisation scene of eighties. Achim is uncompromisingand in times disruptive play merges perfectly into Menelaos serene soundscapes.

This way „when the moon comes through“ became a genuine album. It tells a story. It invites deep exploration but it does not demand it, thus transcending common notions of how Ambient or Electronica should sound.

Text: Frank Eckert

credits

released March 12, 2020

2020/ All tracks written, performed, produced and recorded by Menelaos Tomasides
except track 4: bass trumpet by Achim Fink, track 6 electric guitar by Ben Merz.
Mixing and digital mastering: Michael Springer-Phanton Studio Cologne
Vinyl mastering: Bob Humid
Artwork: Eckhard Langen and Meike Diedeling

Menelaos Tomasides, 31 Minuten, Cologne 2020

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