released December 27, 2014
A Gentle Touch was released on December 27th 2014 as Digital Download and five track CDr limited to 30 hand numbered copies and 4 hand numbered and signed copies.
CDr label nr. CScd005
All music and production: Core Shift
Mastering: Jos Smolders at EarLabs.
Cover: Mike Kramer
More music and info at:
Core Shift is the pseudonym of Mike Kramer, an ambient music producer based in the Netherlands. His previous musical effort is an ambient experimental project called The Evolution Garden. According to Frans De Waard, it was created with guitars, synthesizers and various electronics. On this album, Core Shift produce rhythmic electronic music that reminds me of the famous Selected Ambient Works 85-92 album by Aphex Twin as well as some of the most ethereal tracks on the Basic Channel label. There's a very retro electronic vibe to the album that I've found very enjoyable. All the music seems to be produced on a laptop, judging by the live shows pictures you can see on his Bandcamp page. Among the 5 tracks featured on this limited edition album (only 30 copies were made), my favorite track is without a doubt “Coastline View”, which is a beat driven blissful melodic techno track. I also liked the more “experimental” beats on “Mind Float”. Even though most of the tracks on the album are build on pulsating four on the floor rhythms, it wasn't boring at all. While not the most original music out there, Core Shift's music is appealing and engaging. If you're into ambient techno artists like Coppice Halifax, Fuse, Plastikman and the early electronic music on Warp Records, this album is for you. (author: Pierre Parenteau)
A foray into unashamedly sunny downtempo, if that isn’t an oxymoron. With all positive connotations imaginable, Core Shift, the ambient moniker adopted by Mike Kramer of the Netherlands, opens a back door wide and lets in the calming, summer scented breezes of the second wave of ambient, from back in the mid-nineties, when rave made the time ripe for Eno’s big idea to spread to a wider audience in need of a break. The chill room offered repose and recovery and in pitter-pattered ambient on little cat feet—soft, padded beats.
A Gentle Touch connects with this moment while remaining beholden to none, swirling dervishly, the simplicity of its template and deftness of execution inviting your imagination to open up the space it wants, inner, outer, the great outdoors, the leafy backyard. Pure escapist uplift. This kind of optimism never gets old. (author: Stephen Fruitman)
The fourth release of Core Shift in 2014 is again a beauty. This ambient project of Mike Kramer from The Netherlands is an ambient project with a lot of intensity. The repeating tones of the music sound easy and laid-back meditation music. But in between other tones and sounds, which are added which makes the ambient music to more worth listen. The listener can choose to which parts of the music he can focus on, so he can makes his own musical journey. There is a nice follow-up between the several tracks, from more dark ambient to more open atmospheres. The beats in some tracks give more power to the music so the listener can move with the flow in the composition. The track 'Stream of Consciousness' starts slowly and in silence. Slowly and with a lot of intensity the chords are building a massive sound which circles into your head. The last two tracks remind me to Ambient Works of Aphex Twin, a nice mix of beautiful pulsating beats, nice string sounds and edited voices in an open atmosphere. This album is a must-have for ambient music lovers, which is based in the nighties. (author: Jan Kees Helms)
Core Shift, het ambient project van geluidskunstenaar Mike Kramer, leverde in 2014 maar liefst vier uitgaves op. A Gentle Touch is een waardige opvolger van deze albums die eerder op Ravage webzine werden beschreven.
Mike pakt op de nieuwe cd meer uit en neemt de tijd om zijn muziek op te bouwen. Het album doet in eerste instantie denken aan toegankelijke ambient, met verwijzing naar de cd Ambient Works van Aphex Twin. Maar niets is wat het lijkt. De akkoordpartijen van de stringsynthesizer worden onderhuids ondersteund met allerlei geluiden die de rust enigszins verstoren. Het album is mooi qua opbouw, net als de nummers zelf. De intensiteit groeit naarmate je de cd verder beluistert. Dat zit met name in de ritmes die Mike toevoegt en die de muziek een meer open karakter geven.
A Gentle Touch begint in alle rust met donkere tonen die zich meer en meer op de achtergrond laten drukken door open harmonieuze geluiden. Het nummer Stream of Consiousness vormt een mooi breekpunt op het album. Het begint in stilte waarna het nummer zich langzaam opbouwt met herhalende akkoorden die in het hoofd gaan rondzingen. De daarop volgende nummers verwijzen met name naar het werk van de eerder aangehaalde Aphex Twin. Dit album kan ik sterk aanbevelen voor liefhebbers van meditatieve elektronische muziek uit de jaren ’90. (author: Jan Kees Helms)
ABOUT CORE SHIFT
Core Shift produces Ambient/Techno spiced with Experimental Electronics. The music is characteristic thanks to the typical use of layered sounds which is both intense and subtle; the listener is carried along in a sonic space similar to water in sea, where Core Shifts sound can be compared as currents that blend and always refresh. Added pulsating rhythms complete the sound to be described as 'Dance for the mind'.
Core Shift, founded in early 2013 is one of Mike Kramer's aliases. Mike is also active as a sound art artist recording and producing sounds for installations and releases. Besides that he is the initiator and artistic leader of (h)ear, a foundation which focusses on sound art and experimental music by organizing performances, lectures, workshops and exhibitions.