Nickolas Mohanna

“Neon Agents”

From Nickolas Mohanna’s Reflectors, a new 40-minute album of tone poems, comes “Neon Agents,” a lush, complex piece using a combination of field recordings and guitar/synth treatments. Australian minimalist label Preservation has one of the most consistent catalogs extant, recently releasing albums from Black Eagle Child, Quiet Evenings, Fabio Orsi, and Deep Magic, many of which are packaged in the same themed artwork “using a specially created abstract alphabet of shapes, determined by artist, title and catalog number for something both fixed and random.” It’s also worth scoping out the visual equivalent to this music — minimalist line drawings and zines — at the artist’s website.

• Nickolas Mohanna: http://www.nickolasmohanna.com
• Preservation: http://preservation.com.au/releases/nickolas-mohanna

Young Smoke

“The Space Zone (Special Edition)”

We’ve posted about the Ghetto Teknitianz DJ clique lately, so we thought we’d throw up a track from a young (under 20) footwork/flightcore/gutta house muzik DJ named Young Smoke, who runs with the Flight Muzik crew. Flight Muzik began in 2010 by none other than DJ Diamond, who released TMT favorite Flight Muzik (TMT Review) earlier this year on Planet Mu. But while DJ Diamond’s economic footwork is rooted in a G-funk/soul past, Young Smoke’s music is on a whole other planet. He’s, like, the Sun Ra of footwork/juke or some shit. Check out his epic 15+-minute (!) track “The Space Zone (Special Edition),” clearly the soundtrack to some truly interstellar dance circles. WELCOME TO THE SPACE ZONE!!

Young Smoke also released an album back in April called Gutta House Muzik V.1. Can’t find it anywhere, but you can listen to some of it here. It’s as equally mind-blowing as “The Space Zone.”

• Flight Muzik: http://flightmuzik.blogspot.com

Benoît Honoré Pioulard

“Calder”

As if Benoît Pioulard weren’t already hard enough to pronounce, Thomas Meluch has slipped another fancy French name into his musical moniker: Benoît Honoré Pioulard. But he’s still “just” some 27-year-old guy who lives in Portland. Meluch is set to release a new mini-album on November 1 on Desire Path Recordings (TMT News). Maybe the formality of Benoît’s new middle name, Honoré, implies a step toward seriousness. His new record, entitled Benoît Honoré Pioulard Plays Thelma, is a significant change from his clearly pop-oriented material, particularly his last few full-length albums on Kranky. The new sound is rooted in field recordings and ethereal, organic atmospheres as opposed to a guitar-centered, song-form style.

In the track “Calder” (streaming below), Meluch’s refined ability to conceive catchy, emotional melodies lives close beneath the surface of his new ambient endeavor, as a slow-motion loop dances along buzzing tones and pulsing bells.

• Benoît Honoré Pioulard: http://pioulard.com
• Desire Path: http://www.desirepathrecordings.com

Jakob Olausson

“Morning and Sunrise”

I’m thankful for Jakob Olausson. While much of today’s new music strives to break Earth’s gravitational tether, contentedly drifting through space, Olausson reminds us that there’s plenty of reverb and fog right here on Earth. Sure a title like “Morning and Sunrise” invokes our star, but unlike other notable dawns in music history, I imagine Olausson’s sunrise as one viewed from ground level, a light coming up over a barren hill; Olausson’s cheek pressed against the earth, rather than against the porthole window of a Challenger or Souvlaki.

Throughout the song, the meandering guitar never really picks up any pattern or structure, but the wavering vocals keep us on track with moaned repetition. It’s like traveling with no idea what road you’re on, but strong reason to believe you’re pointed North. Not quite a proper song, this track is from the realm of audiophiles or somnambulists. All this said, his voice and git-box have got a nice sound, and when it comes to music, good sounds are really the best place to start.

Morning and Sunrise LP comes out December 6 on De Stijl Records.

• Jakob Olausson: http://www.myspace.com/jakobolausson
• De Stijl Records: http://destijlrecs.com/055.html

Moon High

“Autumn Leaves”

Hah — listen to Moon High hammer that nail head. They got the honky without the tonk, while spangling fingers on that/there banjo and flute. Flute! Doing their sweetest rendition of post-New Weird Americana. Or, nu.alt.country. That’s a genre now, yeah. What.cd it #stat. Oh, and not to mention that subtle drumming. I saw these peeps play once in Columbus, OH at some house show built around a tree. Which was real, right? Like, I was talking to Dan and Marshall, and I think Mickey was in town, and I dropped my phone in a puddle outside. Needless to say, that drummer was one of my favorite parts. No reason; just nice. Yo, you remember Ohio? Shitty weird winters. Greene Co. and H1N1 outbreaks. Cheap weed and dangle slangin’. People worrying too much about nothing much. “Autumn Leaves,” man: ode to Ohio. Rural driving and yelling at nothing. Campfires after raking piles. Glow-in-the-dark costumes and that hometown shit. Moon High gonna represent at an “unofficial” CMJ show on the free-scrill Saturday @9:30pm, child. Sneak them peeps.

• Moon High: http://www.moonhighmusic.com

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we'll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.