Amateur Dramatics Radiohead For a variety of reasons this record will be released only online, with no physical format. In a somewhat bold move, Edwards has laid bare the reasons for this on his website , which are well worth reading. Regardless of your opinions of the music, or indeed the artist it is a key problem with the download age, that continues the status quo: Downloading records by tiny artists and tiny labels means that they will no longer be able to afford to release records, or record records, or tour. It seems unlikely.
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Amateur Dramatics by Minotaur Shock on Spotify
To say Amateur Dramatics , the fourth LP from Minotaur Shock, the electronic mouthpiece of David Edwards, wants you to pay close attention to it classifies as a bit of an understatement. Rather, with its grandiose tangents, meticulous attention to texture and deliberate, pseudo-classical development, this record often seems as though it wants you to sit down with pencil and paper and start taking notes. And while an album that begs a schoolwork analogy might not seem like the most appetizing thing in the world, Amateur Dramatics buoys by a consistently playful air -- a class taught by the wacky, bow-tied science professor cool enough to let you perform the occasional experiment involving a small explosion. While Edwards does seem serious about wanting you to, ideally, sit down and inspect his work through a pair of opera glasses, at least he's good natured about it. Even the glitches -- things that should, by its very nature, introduce some edge -- pepper the album subtly, forming just another light sprinkling of texture in Edwards' half-electronic, half-organic orchestra. That's perhaps the most interesting aspect of Amateur Dramatics : The way Edwards' numerous traditional instruments rub up against his pixilated synths and still manage to form a perfectly cohesive whole. One particularly beautiful moment occurs in "This Plane is Going to Fall": Just shy of the three-minute mark, the beats break down to reveal sunset-drenched strings that weave in and out of the various peripheral synths, occasionally glitching out and becoming one with them, before the beats come back in and the sole female vocal sample on the album brings us back to the song proper -- all in around 20 seconds.
Minotaur Shock – Amateur Dramatics
Amateur Dramatics is the second album for 4AD by Bristol's Dave Edwards, following on from 's Maritime, and all that has previously been most charming and creatively successful in Minotaur Shock's universe has only become all the more alluring on this latest effort. It's no new trick to combine electronic beats with an orchestral ensemble, but it's seldom sounded so memorable and well-fashioned as on opener 'Zookeeper', which leads the charge with playful melodies and clattering drums. Over the course of the album, Edwards can switch between predominantly naturalistic, acoustic sounds and entirely synthetic ones, resulting in wildly differing sounds from the beatless keyboard and string swells of 'Two Magpies' to 'Jason Forrest', presumably a tribute to the Artist Formerly Known As Donna Summer. It's a fittingly digitised electronic discourse perhaps sounding jarringly whimsical within the context of the rest of the album, but then it's all a little kooky, with an especially manic turn on 'Accelerated Footage', balancing silliness with terrifically impressive synchronisation and technique.
David Thomas's career trajectory has been an odd one: Minotaur Shock's first album Chiff Chaffs and Willow Warblers was a pleasant and generally well-reviewed foray into the "folktronica" genre. Since then, he has been increasingly weird, self-indulgent, and freewheelingly eclectic. Of course, he has also become much more inventive and skilled as an arranger, but his muse has led him into a stylistic no-man's land that will likely appeal to very few people.