Taragana Pyjarama (or Banana in Pajama, as I like to call him) is Danish producer Nick Eriksen. Starting off around 2010 as Eim Ick, Taragana specializes in summery, glowing dance tunes with razor-sharp sampling and full-bodied beat pulse. He’ll whisk you away to a lakeside summer afternoon, legs dangling off the dock, idly fluttering wakes and rifts through the water, the sun glistening and shimmering off each peak, with swirls of fuel adorning the surface with metallic colours. The sounds are at once crystal clear, yet softened as a nostalgic memory. Jovial, but not blithely so.
Hopping from label to label, Taragana Pyjarama has crafted multiple gorgeous EPs, one LP entitled “Tipped Bowls” and a series of remixes. Pretty much everything is worth a listen, in particular his self-titled debut and 2015’s “Ariel” EP, featuring a killer title track reinterpreting Ciara’s “Sorry”.
Favourite track: Ocean… See you in the sunshine.
Wild Nothing is the bedroom shoegaze project formed by Virginia-based multi-instrumentalist Jack Tatum in 2009. The current dark horse of indie, he’s curated an impressive batch of catchy, stripped-down, chill tunes that appreciate with every listen. The DIY production quality puts an endearing twist on his songs, with little blips and quirks that only add to the sincerity and vulnerability. It’s like that kid down the street who has weird parents and conflicting opinions, but you still like having around. His songs rarely deviate from a fairly standard guitar/bass/keyboard/drums formula, but I nevertheless find myself returning to it on a regular basis… so the proof is in the Virginian pudding.
To date, he’s released a bunch of EPs (highlights being “Evertide” and this year’s “Empty Estate”), and 2 solid LPs “Gemini” and “Nocturne”. Update: Round #3 LP “Life of Pause” has arrived; a pretty, synth-leaning work that nestles stylistically between his first two full lengths (try title track “Life of Pause“).
Favourite track: Your Rabbit Feet… How ’bout that bassline?
Eluvium is prolific ambient artist Matthew Cooper, based out of Portland since 2003. What I enjoy most about Eluvium is his versatility of instrumentation, style and emotional overtones without sacrificing quality. With blankets of texture, drone, and white noise he gently washes over you, carrying you out to sea. Using piano, guitar, and occasional guest vocal accentuations, Eluvium provides tangible melody and pattern for the listener to clasp onto in this electronic soundscape.
Cooper works under many monikers including Miniatures, Window Exchange, Concert Silence, Martin Edin and his own name, often as collaborations or one-off projects. As Eluvium, he has released a whopping 6 EPs and 7 LPs, with my two favourites “Lambent Material” and “Talk Amongst The Trees” pictured above. His track “Under The Water It Glowed” is the first ambient song I ever liked, so if you’re not yet a belieber perhaps it could likewise act as your gateway into the abyss. Update: Eluvium has teamed up with Explosions In The Sky guitarist Mark Smith in a new project entitled “Inventions” – their killer self-titled album dropped this week and is a fantastic match up of heavy-hitting ambience, sampling and pop (try “Peaceable Child“). Update II: I really should make a second article for these guys buuut I’m not going to… Regardless, Inventions have a sophomore LP entitled “Maze of Woods” featuring some gorgeous whirlwind, submersing tracks and remixes from The Field, The Caretaker and AWVFTS (try bite-sized opener “Escapers“).
Favourite track: New Animals From The Air… Total immersion.