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Review: ShopLand World: Music for a Discovery Park of Miniature Supermarkets

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This recent compilation by the Strategic Tape Reserve is a daunting release, so I decided to break it down track by track.

 

Nicholas Langley – Prelude One

Very pretty sounding instrumental with nice synth work. It builds up nicely and doesn’t overstay its welcome.


Elizabeth Joan Kelly – What Penumbras

Song starts off with some very cool drums and effects. Great utilization of noise and rhythm. Some very alien sounds appear later in the song. Definitively experimental without demanding too much of the listener.


Fire-Toolz – μακάρων νῆσοι「Fortunate Isles」 (MindSpring Memories – Boat Float remix)

Another nice instrumental with warm synth sounds. Gets more experimental as the track progresses, which isn’t a bad thing in this case at all.


Phirnis – Stockpiling

Interesting noise track. Builds up to a more aggressive sound later in the song. Sounds like alarms going off in a spaceship.


Whettman Chelmets – Wait Line for the Bossa Nova Aisle

Very intriguing song. Almost sounds industrial? Already familiar with Chelmets’ work, so I knew going into this I’d dig this track. Especially love the orchestra hits.


MonoLogue – Prayin’ in Lalibela (long edit)

Synthesizer noise record. Cool sounds on this one. I dig the tone on the drums and the modular sounding bleeps (could be an actual modular for all I know.) Great use of ring modulation.


Robert Macbeth – Study into the Effects of Background Music on In-store Shopping Behaviour (See R. E. Milliman, 1982)

Very bizarre but good song. Love the synth sounds on here. Feel like I hear some Synclavier but I could be mistaken. A lot going on in this track.


Heiijin Jang – Orgel

Harsh noise record. Cool song but not for the faint of heart.


Hooded Communion – Your Visibility

More noise but this time with some drone. Sounds like the soundtrack to a horror movie.


qualchan – A Loop for Trinkets

Playful synth track with some great sounds. Some nice dissonance here as well.


Dere Moans – No Sleep Funnies

Lovely bell sounds open up this song, before it spirals into something like musique concrete. I can dig it. Very alien textures to this song. Psychedelic synthesizers.


dj))water)) – m1m1m

Bleeps and bloops. Fun song. Is this track even following a scale? Probably not.


Marsha Fisher – QVCCTV

Very harsh noise. Cool track, but not music to play for your in-laws. I’d like to play this in a supermarket and see people’s reactions.


Petridisch – Secret Supermarket

Lush synthesizers. Love the tone on the lead synth. One of my favorites from this compilation. Could easily work as a score for a movie or video game soundtrack.


Third Witness – PSA

“Welcome K-Mart shoppers.” Funny sample/recording and the music on this track also sounds like good video game soundtrack material. Interesting synth textures.


mzungu – I67

Very experimental electronic track. Not sure what’s going on here, but I like it. Great use of pad sounds.


moduS pony – Big Yellow Taxi

Okay, so, I don’t know why I thought this would be a Joni Mitchell cover. This one is all over the place in a good way. Are the drums on this track in any sort of meter? Think Zappa or Beefheart making vaporwave.


Suko Pyramid – Look Mother (My Own Tiny Supermarket) (Instrumental)

Melodic video game soundtrack music. Very nice changes and synth sounds.


The Tuesday Night Machines – Assets #10534 to #10542

Another amusing sample about supermarkets. Feels like I’m in a Shoprite on some psychedelic, only the Shoprite is on Mars.


Blank Holidays – Vous êtes un Client Très Distingué

I believe this track translates to “you are a distinguished client.” Interesting use of ring modulation. Sounds like I’m in the same supermarket further along in my trip. “You smell nice.”


Cyfrif Iâ Dur – In Some Ways We are Different and in Some Ways the Same

Great use of arpeggios. Also really like the synth sounds on this one. The changes remind me of Eno’s ambient work. Warm tones that seems to wash over the listener.


qualchan – A Loop for Closing

Sounds like this track was made at Sitar Center. Nice sounding closing track to the physical release of the compilation.


Karen Petrosian – Supermarket Filter Sweep (Dedicated to Dale Winton) (Digital bonus track)

Cacophonous synth noise track. Fun stuff, but again, not music for the in-laws.


VLK – Celebrate the Simple Moments (Digital bonus track)

Vaporwave noise? Never heard anything like this before, but I’m a fan.


qualchan. – A Loop for Lagoons (Digital bonus track)

Another nice closer to the digital release. Sounds like I’m underwater.

 

Overall, ShopLand World: Music for a Discovery Park of Miniature Supermarkets is a compilation that is both diverse and somehow cohesive. Highly recommended for fans of experimental music.


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Author: Sam Wade

Classical violinist and piano player. Mostly self-taught guitarist took lessons with Vic Juris who was sampled for Gang Starr's Mass Appeal hit. Appeared in Music of the Heart with Meryl Streep (d. by Wes Craven.) Long-time home-recording artist.

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