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The Enticing Electronic Music of General Fuzz

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General Fuzz is James Kirsche. While generally soothing, his electronic tuneage is rich with a thrilling energy.

All of these worthwhile releases are available as free digital downloads online.

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GENERAL FUZZ: General Fuzz (DDL on General Fuzz Music)

This release from 2002 features 73 minutes of bouncy electronic music.

Sparkling electronics operate in tandem with rhythms to produce a tasty assortment of lively tunes blessed with engaging character.

Bouncy electronics create a pleasant pop sensibility which is then elevated by a strong keyboard presence. Several riffs run at once, generating a layered melodic demeanor of delightful intricacy. The notes are crisp and crystalline, evoking glistening panoramas which persist in maintaining a spry mood of contagious cheer.

While keyboards guide most of the electronics, the mix is rich with clever embellishments that flavor the melodies with their radiant mien. Bass tones lurk in the flow, establishing a hidden foundation of durable stability.

Percussion provides ample locomotion to propel this music. Displaying a satisfying complexity, the tempos are agile, but hardly harsh. The beats possess a snappy sound that bestows an amiable groove to the music.

A sense of congenial whimsy marks these compositions, imbuing the tunes with a sprightly nature that is immensely appealing. While exhibiting pop properties, this music has been crafted with a cerebral expertise that makes them of distinct interest to aficionados of contemporary EM.

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GENERAL FUZZ: Inner Sunset (DDL on General Fuzz Music)

This release from 2004 offers 75 minutes of manifold electronic tuneage.

Nimble-fingered electronics and snappy e-perc combine to produce another dose of delightful electronic tunes.

Keyboards generate a plethora of inventive riffs. Sweeping chords create airy breezes. Swishing spirals decorate those air currents. Bass grumblings achieve sprightly rhythms. Surging pulsations inspire the listener's shoulders to bop with whimsy. There's even straight-ahead piano--in fact, there's a lot of piano in this music; often the regal keys are flavored with hints of ragtime or funk.

Kirsche overlaps these keyboard tangents, combining divergent passages into melodies of lush vitality.

The percussion is equally varied. Conventional drum machines describe bouncy tempos. Meanwhile, quirky sounds contribute otherworldly rhythms, frequently utilized as dramatic punctuation in the mix. A quota of non-impact sounds are employed as auxiliary rhythms too, thickening the crisp mix with their guttural pulsations.

A distinct complexity is evident in these compositions. While they are catchy and engaging, they also exhibit a skillful intricacy that imbues each tune rich with excitement. This fusion of fun-time and cerebral stimulation is continually satisfying. Riffs are always expanding, exploring variations of pleasurable depth.

There's nothing dark or dangerous about this music. While some tracks pursue a level of intensity, even these pieces retain a mirth and a sense of universal celebration.

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GENERAL FUZZ: Messy's Pace (DDL on General Fuzz Music)

This release from 2005 features 60 minutes of down-tempo electronic music.

Joining Kirsch on this release are: Jesse Culter (on guitar), Tony Jurado (on saxophone), and Jason Parmar (on tabla).

Sultry electronics and undulant rhythms result in tasty tuneage with emphasis on he "tasty" part.

A bevy of machinery is utilized to generate a lush assortment of sounds which are in turn fed through more equipment (many of which are hooked up to keyboards) to produce riffs of languid beauty. (One must not overlook the sans-keyboard gear where things are controlled and triggered via switches and dials, for these auxiliary effects augment the music's glistening nature.) The real trick (and actually, it's no "trick," just unbridled talent) lies in Kirsche's predilection to harness these electronic sounds in the pursuit of delightful melodies. His manner of assembling tenuous layers into luscious constructs is quite awesome.

As mentioned, rhythms contribute to the overall sound. While generally down-tempo, the beats establish a certain vitality that may be all the more effective for their understated presence. The percussion possesses a relaxed character, lurking immersed within the mix and sneakily spreading a subtle bounce throughout the tuneage.

These compositions display a more cerebral disposition than previous releases. The joviality is still there, but it carries a more subconscious effect this time, allowing the composer's creativity to bask in a more contemplative spotlight. The result is thoroughly enjoyable.

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GENERAL FUZZ: Cool Aberrations (DDL on General Fuzz Music)

This release from 2007 offers 54 minutes of uptempo electronic music.

Joining Kirsch on this release are: JP Cutler, Adam Blomberg, Sean Lehe, and Noah Reid (on guitar), Jason Parmar (on tabla), Stara (on vocals), Anthony Rogers-Wright (on bass), Peter Medland (on trumpet), and Steve Sparaponi (on cello).

With this release, Kirsche diverges from his previous works in two manners: he switches from down-tempo to uptempo; and he explores the potential of collaborations with other musicians. The results are dazzling.

The electronics are versatile and complex. Textures and keyboards are employed in strength, generating lush panoramas of vibrant melodies. The textures maintain an atmospheric foundation for the compositions, while the keyboards provide agile definition, producing melodies of remarkable appeal. Astral airs lurk within the mix and are teased to sonic acrobatics with alluring results.

The percussion is quite lively this time, with nimble rhythms stimulating the tunes into bouncy excursions into cosmic territory. Complex tempos unfurl, expanding with each passing moment into grandiose expressions of motivation.

The collaborative aspects serve to expand the music's sonic range. Flutes add a pastoral flair. Vocal effects bestow a heavenly disposition on the pieces. Searing guitars add passion of a very tasty nature. Bass introduces a funky subterranean rumble to the sparkling tuneage. Horns instill a regal quality that is quite jazzy.

While the compositions flourish with energy, they retain a dreamy character, glistening with pleasant stamina and gripping cadence. The emphasis is on animation, though, as each track erupts with invigorating puissance. Several pieces exhibit traces of rock-out buried in their liquid sound.

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GENERAL FUZZ: Soulful Filling (DDL on General Fuzz Music)

This release from 2008 features 50 minutes of gentle electronic tuneage.

Joining General Fuzz on this release are: Dan Lebowitz (on guitar), Michele Weaver and Ryan Charset (on violin), David Phillips (on pedal steel guitar), Audio Angel (on voice), and Steve Sparaponi (on cello).

With this release, Kirsche returns to his down-tempo roots to deliver a dose of tuneage of wondrous nature.

Stately electronics provides a foundation for keyboards and percussion and guitar, all aimed at generating remarkably pleasant tuneage.

The electronics are dreamy and understated. Texturals are used to establish vaporous airs, while keyboards supply a steady supply of undulant melodies, crystalline and pacific in their delicate definition.

The guitar adroitly describes endearing chords with crisp fluidity that floats immersed in the main themes. The pedal steel contributions shine with an arid beauty, bringing warmth to the comfortable passages.

The percussion provides gentle tempos, slick and tasty but relegated to a soft perspective that enhances without being too obtrusive.

In some tracks, mellow violins lend a cerebral flavor to the serene tunes, injecting a classical edge with their romantic flux.

These compositions embody a wonderful example of affable tuneage. The melodies are easygoing and endearing. Their sentiments are uplifting, but in a subtle manner. The overall effect is one of welcome mesmerization, promoting daydreaming with eyes turned inward.

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