Glen Velez: Internal Combustion

Schematic, 2003

Internal Combustion cover

Schematic may not see like the obvious choice for reissuing an acoustic percussion album from the mid-’80s, but in this case, the match is perfect. Glen Velez’s hand-drum improvisation is simply amazing, and electronic music fans will surely appreciate his rhythms and style. Quite a few laptop musicians are creating similar sounds, albeit with sequencers rather than frame drums. Velez’s hypnotic compositions are inspired by ancient forms of music, but he fits right in with modern-day minimalists. (He’s even worked with Steve Reich.) On Internal Combustion, each cut is long and trance-inducing. I find Velez’s music incredibly relaxing. Careful listening creates an almost meditative state. Velez’s work is an important link between electronic music and its prehistoric predecessors.